Stones of Remembrance – Africa
Dr. Jim and Sherry Oxendine – USA/Africa/Russia
Global Pathway and TAG (Tanzania Assembly of God) It is really exciting to be a part of something that you know is going to affect an entire church organization for the Great Commission. That is exactly what is happening in Tanzania. At this last conference (Aug-Sept 2016), we had 187 Pastors from one region in attendance and it was hosted by the District Superintendent. We literally saw these pastors grab hold of the training—they told us “this is a turning point for our nation and the nations of East Africa”. Each of these leadersgave testimony that they were going back to their churches and implement what they had just learned.
The host Pastor gave testimony that they still needed $1,500 to cover the conference expenses (He was covering all the attending pastors’ expenses, as well as manual and conference costs). Two days before the conference began, a businessman in his church came to him, telling him that the Lord had told him to cover all remaining expenses. God is Good! And He always provides when you are following His lead!
Representatives from Uganda, and Kenya were also in attendance and requested that we come and do this training for their organizations. We gave the Ugandan pastor a manual to present to his Bishop—this organization alone has 20,000 churches. The North Western Kenya group has 70,000 members and they want all of their leadership trained in Global Pathway. God began opening the continent of Africa to us one nation at a time—we now have seven African nations asking us to come. We are training other leaders—national and international— to help us with this monumental task.
The Lord has continually over-whelmed us at the favor He has given us in Africa. In the last 3 years alone, He has allowed us to train over 1200 pastors and leaders in Global Pathway and facilitate the building of four village churches. Pastors have taken the training back to their churches and begun to teach their people; send out missions teams; plant village churches; and support full-time missionaries. Recently, we met with the Missions Director of the Tanzanian Assembly of God. He has requested that we train all of their pastors in 47 districts. We are in the planning stages of seeing that come to fruition. (Excerpts from newsletters)
Pam and Caroline Dagwom – Nigeria
I shared on the Challenge of Missions during youth fellowship at Church of Christ in Nations (COCIN) LCC Hwolshe Ring Road, Jos. There was such a mighty presence of God. Three (3) young men that responded to the clarion call to missions are willing and ready for training. Pray for direction and provision.
The free medical outreach to Ningha’an in Akwanga, Nasarawa State was amazing as 363 people were treated of various sicknesses and many children de-wormed. Retroviral Screening (RVS), Diabetes, Hepatitis B & C and Malaria tests were conducted. While 23 people made decisions for Christ during the medical about 50 during film show and open-air preaching. Eighty one (81) people had their hair barbed. The skill acquisitions workshop for missionary wives and 30 young widows was on Laundry Bar Soap, Body & Hair Cream, Beads Making and Queens Cake. The aim of the workshop was to empower the women economically so that they can become, to some degree self-reliant in terms of meeting basic family needs. Gift items such as clothes, shoes and mosquito nets were presented to the widows and their children. Also, Christian literatures, clothes and toiletries were presented to the missionaries while exercise books, pencils and shoes to pupils at Calvary Model School. The joy of these people knew no bounds.
Caroline and I were members of the Central Planning Committee for the International Missions Conference which held from 25th April to 1st May at Du in Jos South, Plateau State, organized by Christian Faith Ministries, Jos under the leadership of Rev. Prof. Kent Hodge. The theme was “Thy Kingdom Come.” There were 1554 registered participants of which 83 were from Ghana, Benin Republic, Chad, Niger Republic and Cameroon while 1471 from across Nigeria. Gift items were presented to the respective ministries that made it to the conference. These items include: bicycles, generators, grinding machines, sewing machines, irrigation machines, solar and electric power banks and Saber audio Bibles. Thank God for the success of the conference. I served as secretary for the committee and the Camp Commandant at the program. (Excerpts from newsletters)
Steve Wheeler – Thailand to Tanzania
This morning I was cleaning off my desk preparing for the move to Tanzania, and I came across this ring. Seeing it brought back a flood of memories.
In March of 2015, I received a Facebook Message from one of our missionary’s mom. Her message startled me as it was completely out of the blue. I hadn't communicated with her much at all and hardly knew her.
Her message was, "I sense the Lord say that by this time next year, there could be a special woman in your life, but only if it is the desire of your heart and if you enter into agreement and declaration about it."
I struggled and thought about this word for several months, and thought about it some more, continuing to wrestle with it.
I was in the United States about 6 months later, and decided to take a chance on God. I prayed and came into agreement that if the Lord had a woman for me, He could bring her to me. BUT I wasn't going to waste time looking for her. He was going to have to bring her to me supernaturally and in such a way that I would know that this was from Him.
As a token of my agreement, I decided to get this ring. The inscription is 1 Thessalonians 5:17 in Greek: "Pray without ceasing." I got this ring as a token so that whenever I would look at it, I would be reminded of God's Word and Promise and would be reminded of my agreement with His will.
Today, as I was looking back on the timeline of all of this, I can see that God first spoke to me about a wife in March of 2015, I came into agreement with Him in November 2015, and it was in April of 2016, (just about 5 months after entering into agreement with God about this), I met Veronica in Tanzania.
I just sat and stared at this ring for quite a few moments as I took in the goodness of God, feeling overwhelmed that He would favor me as He has.
Craig Kuehn wrote, “By the way, Steve first joined us as a single missionary in 1996. He has been willing to be married but really wanted what God had for him so this has been a 20 year journey for him. He really hasn't dated or pursued a wife while on the field. And then a year or so after he received this word he was introduced to a Tanzanian woman, a leader in the church we are training, who was also single and waiting on the husband God had for her. Quite an amazing story!”
As of November 2016 the Bible students from the new Calvary Bible School in Arusha, Tanzania have lead 620 people to Christ, planted 1 new church, begun 8 cell groups, and ministered to over 4500 people!! Go GOD!
Kate Royal – Burkina Faso
I am bursting with news to share with you. Last year we had 9 boys going to school and now this year its 23 boys!! WOW, what excitement, don’t you think?!!!!!!!!
Some of these boys who come to us were charming pests! But now they are taking pride in their appearance. They and their clothes are spotless and their hair is cut decently. You should see them go out from the land clean with their backpacks on and books enclosed and with pride in their step. They are turning heads showing what they desire to be as they set off, walking to school to improve and give themselves a future. The hunger from these boys for education is mind blowing. It seems all the time there is a boy studying - they go off in quiet corners.
Church is going SO well with scripture memorization growing greatly within each boy. The Saturday club is just growing well as the boys thrive on what is happening. Sunday Church is also going from strength to strength. There is such joy within the church. We are truly blessed in all we do on the land. Every day here is just amazing. God’s love is everywhere! His joy just bounds about from one boy to another. I have the honour of being part of this excitement daily. WOW, am I blessed!
Saturday two Fulani young men in their early 20s set out from Dori (north) of us having heard about what “Kids of Hope” has done over many years. They left as Muslims determined to arrive with us and ask to become Christians. Just imagine that each step they took was taking them one step closer to Jesus! That sure is a WOW moment!! (Excerpts from newsletters)
Ed and Barbara Louton – South Africa
We have just heard from one of our past students from the late ‘80s who has been working in Bible Translation projects in Ethiopia, and other places, for many years. He wrote, “Our work in Ethiopia is really growing. There is such vision among the (Ethiopian) churches to reach the unreached groups of Ethiopia. Still one third of the people groups have not yet had one verse of scripture translated.” He went on to say that the Bible Translation ministry that he is working with now has 20 full scale Bible translation projects running in Ethiopia. A report like this fills us with thanks to God for giving us the opportunity and privilege to have a part in his preparation for missionary work. Before coming to Africa School of Missions he was a dental student when an accident left him a paraplegic. Although he went on to complete his dental training and is a fully qualified dentist, he works as a bible translator from a wheelchair.
These days our work is mainly among Zulu students at Union Bible Institute. It’s exciting to witness Africans catching a vision for world missions. They are hearing the call of God to be part of those who “go” in fulfilling the Great Commission of Matt. 28:18-20. Currently, I have 23 students in my missions class. I am also assisting another group of seven doing a missions course, who are in a degree program. I am helping them in their research and when they write assignments it is my job to grade them. We are very thankful that we can still be active in such a wonderful calling. Truly God is good to us! (Excerpt from newsletter)