Church in the Bush
We always feel close to the Lord when we are outdoors enjoying his amazing creation and worshipping Him. In South Sudan, it is very easy to be worshipping the Lord ‘in church’ but actually be outside! Many churches are a group of people in a village gathering and praying under a tree. Four of our five church plants are in small villages with just humble clearings and the shade of a tree to give relief from the relentless heat and protection from the scorching sun.
It started with a burden for ‘Maloney’ where we have been conducting medical outreaches for the past three years. He recently moved to Maloney, which is not his home, and began sharing the gospel with the local community. As there was no church, he picked a tree and started praying and preaching on Sunday. Soon people started to gather to hear what he was saying and they stayed! As Santino taught the Word of God people listened and came back for more, week after week, totaling now over 70 people. What is so awesome is he used what he learned through our Community Health Evangelism to mobilize the church community to take ownership of their place of worship. Together they gathered sticks and made a fence around the tree and also benches to sit. Without the motivation of money or goods, this is not easy to accomplish.
Santino prayed and used what he learned and today he is so proud of his church in Maloney. And we are so proud of him, his trust in Jesus as Savior and the Holy Spirit to be his guide.
Once a week our medical team goes to Maloney to serve the community. Kingdom Assignment Sudan (KAS), a ministry from Australia partnered with us and funded the building of a small medical clinic. Until recently we always held our medical outreaches under a tree but this year we have been able to start seeing patients in the new clinic. Despite the heat of the midday sun, over one hundred people still come out to see Dr. Tom and receive healing. Peter, our community health worker in Maloney and Pastor Santino, keep the community informed of the medical outreaches and notify us if there are any serious cases needing immediate attention. Santino always shares a gospel message with waiting patients and invites them to his church. He has shown the Jesus film three times in the cattle camps and
This month we are hosting a team of missionaries from Uganda to lead us in Simply the Story (STS) training. This is a wonderful method to use here in Africa, where story-telling is a part of everyday life. Our pastors are trained in using this method and Santino has three elders in his church that are going to be trained. The other church plants also have raised up people to be trained and our
graduated pastors are all sending people from their villages. We are excited to host 30-40 people for this event.
We also are hosting the fourth and final Training of Trainers (TOT) for Community Health Evangelism (CHE). Each trainer has a committee in their village that selects Community Health Evangelists and then oversees their service to the community. We are excited to see this program get into full swing in the villages. Pastor Santino and Peter Malok are TOT’s serving the community of Maloney.
As CHE expands, we are looking for one year interns to help with the follow-up of the CHE’s and TOT’s in the villages and assist Pastor Kibe with the church plants.
“Oh, that you would bless me and expand my territory! Please be with me in all that I do, and keep me from all trouble and pain!”
– 1 Chronicles 4:10
- Pray for Agums’ visa, we still have no news from the embassy.
- Pray for the STS and CHE teams to be effective in communicating and teaching.
- Pray for Pastor Santino and his church to grow in knowledge and be a light in the community.
- Pray for Peter Malok (est. age 26) as he begins his final exams to complete high school.
- Pray for our team as we juggle the needs of our medical clinic with the medical needs in Maloney.
- Pray for medical cover for Dr. Tom for 2 months in the summer, so he can take his annual leave.
We are blessed to be part of the Kingdom Work. Please prayerfully consider partnering with us financially to further the territory for Jesus Christ.