Tuesday, August 12, 2014

July 2014

Hi everyone, God is working and we give Him the Glory...Amen
There have been a number of baptisms this quarter taking place in all areas of the ministry and we give God the Glory. We now head into the most receptive months of the year. Please pray for the GCM Team and those being taught.

NAMIBIA

CHARIOT TWO

We held a leadership seminar in Windhoek before the church planting with the campaigners.  Below left shows our GCM leadership seminar taking place in Windhoek.  Key leaders attended from Windhoek, Walvis Bay, Rundu and Tsumeb.  Namibia has been neglected over the years and missionaries are not given working visas, making it a country that still has so much pioneering work to do.  Please pray for us as God opens doors and as we take Namibians and teach them to reach their own country. 



There was food and fellowship aplenty (above right).  I am so impressed as the group grows and the same faithful leaders come in every year to be taught and encouraged.  All these congregations have been planted using the Gospel Chariot and American campaigners and when they leave, GCM works alongside the locals to make sure the newly planted churches continue.  It's tough, but exciting.  One sees the hand of God year after year.

Below right shows Mike Knappier teaching a soul and his wife Diane (in the background) teaching the children and on the left shows myself baptizing a receptive lady.

 

CAMPAIGN AND CHURCH PLANTING IN ONDANGWA, NAMIBIA

We managed to get a small outbuilding erected for Sunday worship and there were 45 in attendance on the first Sunday.  Anton Ngabwe (below, left) will be helping as the missionary in the area.



Anton has been studying for the last 5 years at a University in Windhoek.  At the same time he has helped us preach at the Wanaheda Church of Christ near Windhoek which we planted some years back.  He has done a wonderful job and we believe God is calling him to be the missionary in Namibia.  He will assist the young congregation in the North, with another young brother called Bernard.  Between the two of them they will encourage all other congregations in the country.  It's easy planting congregations, but how do we keep them going?  I believe God has a plan. 

Some other news we need to share is that the Gospel Chariot, after campaigning in Ondangwa, Namibia, hit a cow on the way to Zambia.  Layman and Robert were not hurt, Amen.  It was repaired in Rundu and they then travelled on to Kalomo in Zambia.

ZAMBIA

Chariot Two crossed over into Zambia from Namibia and while they were in Kalomo (in the South) they enrolled 303 students to World Bible School, had 30 restorations and 35 baptisms. God is good! They then headed on to Chisekese about 165kms from Kalomo.

We have had our fair share of problems with having to replace a gear box and then hitting a cow on the road near Rundu on the way to Zambia, then we also had a tiny problem in that the projector was not working because of a burnt out bulb. We eventually bought a new projector.


All the photos below were taken at Kalomo. Preaching, teaching, loving and encouraging as the gospel chariot travels from country to country.







SOUTH AFRICA

CHARIOT ONE

Chariot 1 started out the year in the Eastern Cape - first up was Port Elizabeth (Missionvale) where we had 5 baptisms and then the Chariot moved on to Dimbaza, near King Williams Town, where 2 more baptisms were reported. After this they went on to Nthabankulu, about 200km from Umtata, and then planned on heading North into the Free State for two weeks. The brethren in the Free State unfortunately cancelled their gospel meeting - which actually worked out well for the churches in the Pretoria area because they were then able to put the Chariot to good use at Lotus Gardens, an area near Atteridgeville.

After the time in Lotus Gardens they then moved on to Zeerust to make their way up to Botswana for the yearly Lectureship that moves from region to region.

Church planting in Lydenburg:  Chariot One travelled to Lydenburg at the end of April with the intention of planting a church in the area.  The trip resulted in four baptisms (three new Christians pictured below right).  The chief in the area also provided land for the church to use (which is where the Chariot worked - below left) and a small corrugated iron structure was erected to use as a place of worship. 


 

Chariot One will then be going over to Venda on June 9 for an 8 week campaign. I will be joining them there and will do a leadership seminar.

PRETORIA

Twelve students were enrolled for our most recent intake at the Short Term School in Pretoria. By the fourth week 9 of the students had been baptised - at the church in Atteridgeville - and we are happy to report that by the last week of school all of the students had been baptised - some of them in the rain even!




The students were involved in some practical work in and around the Pretoria churches and also helped out during the time the Chariot was in the Lotus Gardens area.
 
Here are some of the students on their first day getting ready to go do some "door knocking" and also helping out pitching the tent. The students were so excited to be involved in the outreach program and for them to see the bigger picture of how Gospel Chariot Missions and the churches work together to teach the gospel.   





The gospel meeting at Lotus Gardens was well attended by the community and on our first day there were almost 80 people who attended. The attendance grew every day.   They went about from house to house and distributed tracts around the area with the students. They were warmly welcomed and encouraged by the church and the community.  Tebogo helped with the gospel meeting as well as with some of the preaching.  They worked and taught both day and night.





The Lord added 5 souls (some of them seen above) to their number and 8 people were restored to the Lord.

DURBAN

The Durban office hosted a WBS seminar in March which was well attended by students and their families and friends.

Paulus reports that the Saturday WBS classes are being well attended and he has seen an increase in students and more regular attendance at classes as they are becoming more familiar with the office.



Classes are also being held in Kwa-Makhutha on Saturdays and Leslie has been helped by Wiseman Mbatha, a WBS student who was baptised last year, who has been helping open doors in that area. Wiseman has been teaching his family and friends and has been able to invite them to the Saturday classes, which in turn has led to an evangelism campaign in the area and there are many doors opening there.


PLETTENBERG BAY/WESTERN CAPE


Lazarus and our team at Kwanokhutula headed out on a short round trip from Plettenberg Bay and back again. The trip started in Thembalethu (in George) for four days, then on to Mossel Bay for two days and then ended in Oudtshoorn before heading back home to Plettenberg Bay. They were doing open air preaching, recruiting almost 150 new WBS students and trying to make contact with and visit some WBS students in the area.






During the visit in Thembalethu they discovered a brother, Samuel Oseyi and his wife, from Kumasi Church of Christ in Ghana and they have introduced them to the church in Thembalethu.

Lazarus also spent some time preaching and teaching in Knysna and has reported he will be heading that way for fortnightly Bible studies as there are many doors opening there.


We have also had a door opening in Kranshoek (when the Gospel Chariot was in the area in March) and Lazarus has been following up with these contacts - as a result there are 5 people we are studying with in the area.  Lazarus and his wife Busi will be travelling out to Kranshoek every Sunday afternoon to help with the worship service there (below).  Busi has also been helping the work and has been studying and praying with some of the women.



Wow, look at this! Zonge, Gladman and Lazarus (L - R pictured below) on mountain bikes and all rigged out to cycle. As you know, I love exercise and when working that region, I get out early in the morning and cycle. I then heard about this development academy program for township youth. When I heard that, I immediately signed my 3 guys up and so they now help work with this program. Its good for them, but it also helps them connect with all the young talented youth in the township. Who knows where this program will end and how many will be invited to follow Jesus.


PORTABLE BAPTISTERIES

Below left shows 10 portable baptisteries we've had made for our outreach in different areas. Some 10 years ago we made 15 and they have been used and used to the point that they are no longer fit for use!


Below you can see Lazarus Munetsi, one of our key leaders, holding one. They just fold up and can be put into a small bag making them easily portable.



They will also be put to good use on the mini chariots and can be filled up as and when necessary if there is no body of water nearby.


PLEASE pray that many, many, many souls will hear the word and be baptised in these portable pools.

VENDA

There are currently 14 students enrolled at the Short Term School in Venda.  Brother O.T. Malindi (below - top) has been doing a great job overseeing the school and other mission projects for us.



DeVilliers (below) and Bro. Tshimomola (bottom), one of the former Short Term School students, held a seminar teaching a group of people from various denominations. It was very successful and they are hoping it will become a regular monthly teaching appointment as the group thanked them and asked them to come back and teach them as they realized there was still a lot they did not know and understand about the bible. Their theme is going to be "Searching the Scriptures" and they are going to base the lessons on II Timothy 2:15.



All of the seminar attendees signed up to study with WBS and one of them has joined us at the Short Term School, with two others wanting to study part time. I will be meeting Don Noles from Tulsa early next month and we will be travelling together to Venda. Don and the congregation in Tulsa have helped us help the Venda brethren teach, reach and cross borders doing mission work.

MINI CHARIOTS

Liberia, Zimbabwe, Malawi, Togo and Benin

Just a quick update on the mini chariots.  The mini chariot in Liberia is up and running and has baptized over 50 souls recently.  The Zimbabwean, Togo and Malawian mini chariots are also now up and running.

The Benin mini chariot was not in our plans for this year, but we can inform you that it is in the process of being built. Amen and Amen. Brother George Akpabli will be overseeing that mini chariot. He is an amazing leader and we so excited to be working with him, but also the other brothers, Liberia, Isaac Daye, Togo, Willie Gley, Zimbabwe, Washington Mhlanga, Venda, Obrien Malindi......Wow, these are great leaders. Thank you God. Please pray for them.

As you can see, these mini chariots are much smaller, but are just as effective.  They will travel around preaching and educating congregations on how to do World Bible School follow up.  They will also preach in prisons and plant churches and at the same time also be used to help mature those young congregations.  We are hoping to have 20 of these in years to come.  "Seeking and Saving the Lost".





Above shows the speaker horns we got put on for open air meeting and seminars.  This way they can have a number of meetings in one day as they travel from village to village.

ZIMBABWE

Chris Magudu has been travelling and planning ahead for the arrival of the mini chariot to Zimbabwe.  He has planned WBS seminars in Masvingo (17 - 20 July at Rujeko Community Hall) and Gweru (November 20 - 23) which will run concurrently with the chariot being in those towns.  He is also trying to find suitable venues in Beitbridge, Chiredzi, Zvishavane, Mvuma, Chivhu, Kamativi and Binga.

This is going to be fantastic.  Gospel Chariot Missions has a dream and Africa has the team.  This is truly "Africans taking Africa for Jesus" - PLEASE PRAY FOR ALL THIS, Thank you Lord.

BOTSWANA

Chariot One travelled up to Botswana to help out at the annual Lectureship on April 18 and 19. The tent was used for classes and also as a meeting place for those who wanted to study the word in smaller groups or one-on-one. We praise God that four people decided to be baptised during this time.



Dimpo and Bongani also travelled to Botswana to attend the lectureship and to help promote the work of the Gospel Chariots.   They also helped with handing out tracts and one-on-one Bible studies held under the chariot tent. They were also both speakers at the lectureship. The wonderful thing about the lectureship is that we get to network with all the Churches of Christ and the more we network, the more effective we become as a ministry.

GHANA

Evans Larty travelled to the northern region of Ghana to meet with the churches there. They were very excited and are looking forward to using the Gospel Chariot to help them spread the word and strengthen the church in their region.





The Ghana Gospel Chariot has been working with and among the brethren in the Volta region of Ghana from January until mid March. Within this period a total of eleven towns were evangelized and work in each town lasted between three to five days. 778 people were enrolled to study with World Bible School and 30 people were baptized.





The Chariot continues in the Volta region and there have been a number of baptisms and restorations reported - we are still waiting for the numbers to be confirmed.  This chariot will now be moving on to the North.

LIBERIA

MARGIBI COUNTY

Isaac Daye working on the mini chariot in Liberia spent two days in Margibi county, specifically in 27 Division on the Firestone rubber plantation, and reports that the results were beyond his expectations. 15 souls were baptised and added to the 27 Division Firestone congregation and the attendance on Sunday April 6 was 197 (in a bamboo structure!) - Isaac says it was crowded!


PAYNESVILLE

The Gospel Chariot helped at the G.S.A. Road church of Christ in Paynesville in a three day campaign. It yielded five baptisms. Isaac shared hundreds of tracts with the community, conducted nightly preaching and showing of The Passion of the Christ.  

Isaac also reports that one of the older brethren told him that, as a child, he remembered attending denominational churches mobile cinemas and never thought the church of Christ could do that kind of massive outreach, but now, with hundreds coming out to watch The Passion of the Christ, and for him to see the mini Gospel Chariot travelling across the city of Monrovia and around the nation, it is an answer to prayer and a dream come true for him.


KAKATA

The mini Gospel chariot has been put to work and has already helped with a WBS campaign to Kakata which yielded 21 baptisms and 62 new WBS enrolments. For three days Isaac was hosted by the Kakata Church of Christ where they went preaching from door to door and showed The Passion of the Christ nightly to huge crowds.


Isaac has left a box of 700 WBS Introduction lessons with the church for additional enrolment and also managed to enrol 130 school students in Weala - they will be using the WBS courses as text book material for religious educational studies.

The next port of call for Isaac and his mini Gospel Chariot is Logan town.
WOW!  Can you imagine when all mini chariots are up and running?   

PLEASE PRAY FOR ALL INVOLVED.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Church planting in Namibia

What if...

map showing location of Ondangwa Namibia...you started with an infinite, all-powerful God, added 7 servants ready and eager to do his work, and completed the mix with a community of receptive hearts, anxious to hear the Good News? Could the result be a new congregation of the Lord's Body, where none existed before? Not that God needs us to complete him, or to make him more of a God, but that's the way he's chosen to accomplish his work -- through fragile, imperfect jars of clay like you and me (2 Corinthians 4:7).

The task

The task was to plant a congregation in Ondangwa Namibia. The church is strong in Namibia, but not many congregations exist in the small towns and rural areas in Northern Namibia. Ondangwa was a good choice for many reasons, some of which are that it's a good-sized city of 23,000 people, and we had a connection through one of the Windhoek sisters to provide the location for the Gospel Chariot to park for the week.

The team

The 7 members of the team were from 4 different congregations in the U.S., 3 members being from Arkansas and 4 from Texas. In the photo below, you see (L-to-R, back row), Anthony Ngabwe, Mike & Diane Knappier, Bob Grinslade, Lyman Mpharo, Tommy LeFan, Joel Lewis, and Joseph Petrus. Front row, Robert Hara, Bob Mathews, and Charlie Worrell.

Mike & Diane are from the Northside congregation in Benton AR, Joel is from the Lawson Rd. congregation in Little Rock AR, Bob is from the Southern Hills congregation in Buda TX, and the other Americans are from the Fredericksburg TX congregation.



The work

Certainly the most immediate work was getting the word out -- letting people know we were there, inviting them to Bible study and evening worship, and letting them know where the congregation would be meeting after we left. We were encouraged by the receptive hearts and the willingness of the Ondangwa residents to hear the message.

Here you see Bernard  (L) and then him and Mike (R) greeting neighbors & inviting them to study. Tommy and Robert study with a local family, and Joel going door-to-door with Anthony and Bernard.
Clockwise, from top left, Tommy & Bob G. conduct a study; Robert & Bernard show the sign that we placed by the roadway so people would know who we were; Diane did a great work teaching the children every day; one of the families who heard the Word.
Charlie and Bob G. engaged in studies.
Charlie takes Liina's confession & baptizes her. Liina was the first convert of the week, and was present every day for study, and every night for worship.

New converts, clockwise from top left: Mike, Charlie, and Bob G. with Liina; Robert takes Ronny's confession, Tommy introduces some of the new converts to the congregation on Friday night; Tommy with Martinez.

Evening worship

We met for worship from 6 to 8 PM each night from Tuesday through Saturday. Preaching during the week were Anthony, Bob M., Joel, Mike, and Tommy.

Mike preached on Tuesday night. The crowd was light that night, but increased in number every day.
We met every night during the week for worship.
Mike teaching Bible class on Sunday morning.
Tommy gives some final encouragement to the new congregation on Sunday morning.

Off to a good start

We ended the week with 34 studies and 11 baptisms. After worship Sunday morning, Anthony held a business meeting with the congregation, and several stepped up to provide needed services -- taking care of the Sunday offering, building a meeting facility, and membership, to name a few.

Anthony (in the suit) and Peter (wearing a hat) meet with the congregation after worship on Sunday.
Baptismal garments & towels hanging out to dry. This is what it's all about!