Below shows some of the happenings for our 2015 fourth quarter report and it has been an amazing year with us reaching more than ever before. To God be the Glory. Wow! This work now really has some momentum and as they say, momentum is a leaders best friend, and if that is true, who knows what lies ahead for 2016 and beyond. Our 2016 year planner has been completed with 12 chariots going into 19 countries. I am hoping to travel to Nigeria and some Central African countries later in the year to look into the possibility of a big gospel chariot for that region. Please pray for that as we continue to reach the whole continent of Africa.
2016 - New Ministry
I have been praying for 2 years about starting another GCM ministry, but this time in Australia due to me living there and commuting to Africa. I have toiled and waited on God and I believe the time has arrived for something that is close to my heart, and that is trying to reach unchurched people through caring and sharing and helping them worship God in their homes, but even more getting them to turn around and help their communities. We have to find ways of making the world a better place.
Australians are not very receptive, but many, many believe and pray to God, but they are tired of the religious confusion and land is way too expensive for church buildings. I believe God is showing me something that is driving me insane and I feel so compelled and so I have made the commitment on top of all our African work to start another work, but this time in Australia and we are calling it Gospel Care Missions. It's exciting and God will reveal more as we slowly but surely put structures in place. PLEASE PRAY that from nothing something bigger than ourselves can happen for the most CARING person who ever lived and that is JESUS CHRIST.
This is just a dream that has now just become a goal that I will promote over the coming years and it's not what I can do, but how many others I can encourage to buy into this vision. My goal is to get a gospel chariot camper and get retired brethren from the US and other countries to help follow up on possible house church plantings. We can all do a month in the camper reaching and teaching and getting these Christians to care for their communities. 12 months of the year.
PLEASE PRAY FOR US IN THIS REGARD. As I said I don't have to do this. I have a job, but I feel compelled and will only have peace if I TRY. Thank You All....Thank You Lord. More about this as the year progresses and when I return from 2 months in Africa.
NEW GOSPEL CHARIOT FOR EAST AFRICA
KENYA, UGANDA, SOUTH SUDAN and ETHIOPIA
The new 4x4 HINO truck has arrived at Ramcom, our bodybuilders in George, South Africa, where they are now busy transforming it into a Gospel Chariot that is really a "Church on Wheels" travelling and helping people know Jesus. This will be our 12th Gospel Chariot going into 19 countries in total. Who would have ever thought? God really does do amazing things, things that we think impossible.
As at December 10, the new truck had been stripped down and sprayed our GCM red.
The team at the bodybuilders is ahead of schedule. The sheeting has arrived and they will complete the body with baptistery, sleeping quarters and store room by early 2016.
Then the tent and equipment will be added and after that we will export it to our brothers in Kenya who will work with us in spreading the gospel in that whole region.
The Malawi outreach was once again a great success. More than 330 souls baptized this year. Amazing....Thank you Lord.
Below shows Stuart Kirkwood from Southern Hills congregation in Buda, TX preaching while Davis is interpreting.
The chariot then moved on to Nyanga and I joined them there with two brothers from the US, Don Godwin and Bo Shero. It was fantastic as we preached, encouraged and witnessed God's hand working through so many.
Sunday morning worship in Lilongwe before we left the region.
Below shows Don Godwin, on the right, who is a long time elder in the church and Bo Shero, a long time preacher, saying goodbye to me from the Johannesburg airport. It was a fantastic time with them. The Brownfield Church of Christ has been involved in African missions for many, many years and to travel with them and thank them and show them what they are doing was a dream come true. Thank you brethren.
One thing you'll see a lot of in Malawi is bicycles! Love how they parked their bicycles to come and listen to the gospel message on the chariot.
Layman worked with the children of the village and we were fed and had a full day of fellowship and preaching. Some Chiefs of the area where there as well and it's so good to see how the Church of Christ leaders plan these meetings months before the chariots get there. God Bless you brethren as you all work together.
Please pray for Lyman and Robert as they spend some time at home after an amazing 9 months of overseeing and working the Malawian Gospel Chariot. Thousands and thousands have heard the word and hundreds have been baptized. Thank you Lyman and Robert, you are true soldiers of the Lord.
Robert and Lyman will be at home with family and friends and putting roofs on two church buildings after the brethren made their own bricks and built the walls as you'll see in the photos below. Their chariot now goes in for repairs, roadworthy and check ups before heading out again in 2016.
Lyman and Robert are enjoying the rainy season, whilst trying to do WBS follow up, distribute maize to the poor and work with the local congregations. Moster sent us some photos of the roads due to the rain.
Please pray for them as they work during the rainy season. As you can see we pull all big chariots out of the region due to the rains and malaria. Below you can see one WBS student being baptised.
Lyman headed back to his home town where he grew up and he reports the following: "We had a meeting with Mini Chariot in Madede church of Christ from Friday up to Sunday, it is where I came from and we are now back in Mzuzu after a wonderful weekend reaching out."
The results of the Madede visit were as follows:
Baptisms : 25
Restoration : 2
WBS Registration : 35
Even though Robert and Lyman are home resting until February they have been very busy building and finishing two church buildings. They have been working hard travelling through seven countries baptizing hundreds and now they are home helping others.
And here's the other building:
The Ghana Gospel Chariot had a wonderful last quarter reaching many and pulling in the crowds to hear Gods Word. Evans Lartey sent us these photos and report from Ghana.....Just amazing. Thank You Lord.
Evans: I took the Heritage Bible students to the Assin area to work with the Chariot there. We were there for one week (12th - 18th October 2015) and worked in four towns. We did house to house and dawn preaching from 4.30 am till 6 am. The Lord added 13 souls to the church.
We also went to a palm wine plantation and had studies with the palm wine tappers. Another 3 got baptized and it was great joy for both us and them."
The churches in the Assin district in the central region of Ghana, where the Ghana Gospel Chariot ended a campaign in October, sent the following report to us. A total of 61 people were baptized - 43 people were baptized during the Assin Disctrict campaign and a further 18 were baptized after the chariot left the area, but the workers there report they were a direct result of the chariot having been there.
The team handed out tracts in the markets (above) and even to those stopped in the traffic! (below)
The chariot also worked in the eastern region of Ghana at Akim Oda and another 72 souls baptized there. On the day this photo below was taken 25 people were baptized at this one occasion.
After the Assin campaign, the Chariot worked with some towns and villages in the central region where 35 souls were won for Christ.
The Chariot was also engaged in two massive gospel campaigns organised by the Takoradi Central church of Christ in the western region of Ghana, and the churches of Christ at Sunyani in the Brong Ahafo region of Ghana. Each campaign lasted for one week. The Chariot was used extensively in broadcasting the campaign message in a float within the municipality. Below shows the chariot being escorted along the streets by the police in Sunyani.
Attendance during night street preaching was an average of two thousand in Takoradi (pictured below) and 39 baptisms were recorded.
The Sunyani campaign (below) also had a large crowd nearing two thousand at the night street preaching and 41 baptisms were recorded.
Look who is home! Machona flew back into South Africa on October 19 after studying at Harding and I was there to spend some time with him. We prayed and thanked God for his studies and degrees. How proud we are of him. He does not have enough hands to hold them, I had to help him. Ha ha.
He has come a long way from that first meeting when we met in a dusty town in the Free State and he has done all this himself with God's Power and a thing called motivation and determination. Machona is now working with us at Gospel Chariot Missions, under our future director Dimpo Motimele.
These two men go back a long way and and I am so HAPPY that they have each other again as I grow older and hand over the baton in 2020. Not forgetting Lazarus and Bongani. What a team they make! Not that I will be retiring, but rather working behind them and marvelling at how much more they can do without me and I can do some things to support them and take missions to new heights for Jesus on this amazing continent or wherever God leads us.
Please pray for us as we seek God's wisdom. Machona was our first ever chariot driver. Welcome home Machona, may the empowering begin. We give God the Glory and all those who helped you along the way. Thank you God.
Above shows (L-R) Leslie, Chuma, Paulus and France who organised the meeting. Lord Willing this will be a yearly event creating a culture of leadership. The South African Gospel Chariot with Bongani and team were also just 2 hours South of Durban preaching at a gospel meeting - see below.
In December the Durban office also hosted a graduation of their students. Paulus Sotetsi and Leslie Khumalo, who head up the office in Downtown Durban, teach thousands of students through the post and invite students in for Saturday extension lessons. Below you can see the year end graduation. Thank you to France and other leaders who assisted in this graduation.
CHARIOT ONE with Bongani
Visiting in KWAZULU NATAL
Bongani reports that they had a great week in Jozini where 10 people were baptized and the cooperation from the brethren was very good.
Below shows Victor, Bongani's "Timothy", as he teaches a lesson. He is growing in the Lord as he does his time working on the chariot. Please pray for these missionaries.
Bongani reported having problems in the area where they pitched the tent for the gospel meeting (the week of October 19) due to the community being angry and afraid of preachers pitching tents and claiming to do miracles and deceiving them.
Bongani says they put scriptures up on the big screen and let the word speak the truth and the community eventually accepted them, but more importantly, 2 people accepted Jesus and were baptized.
At the end of October Bongani had to get some maintenance and repairs done on the big tent for Chariot One.
Visiting in HAMMANSKRAAL
Below shows the big Gospel Chariot doing a gospel meeting in Hammanskraal, north of Pretoria, with Bongani and Tumelo preaching. You can also see those who came forward to put Christ on in baptism. Twelve people were baptized as a result of these open air meetings in Hammanskraal.
The Hillview Church parents gathered together to strengthen one another in their walk of faith regarding their marriages at home.
The Hillview Youth also went on an outing to Natures Valley, where there was leadership and team building and they also enjoyed a meal together.
You can also see minor repairs being done at the building,
and a bible study being held at brother Gladman's house.
Early December also saw the Hillview Church of Christ Sunday School graduation in Kwanokutula, Plettenberg Bay. Well done ladies for your teaching of the children. This is my home church when in South Africa. God helped us plant this congregation in 2007 and now the congregation runs itself with GCM's Lazarus Munetsi using this church as a base for missions in the Western and Eastern Cape.
Dimpo reported a number of baptisms and doors opening for young men to be sent to the north to help the struggling congregation there, but also having meetings with Nathan Holland who is part of the mission team in Angola. Please pray for Dimpo and the team in Namibia. It's hard pioneering work. Only 2 baptisms in Namibia compared to 330 in Malawi.
Here you can also see the new mini gospel chariot that has arrived in Namibia and is busy being sprayed red. 2016 is looking very promising!
Auswich, on the Zimbabwe mini gospel chariot, reported that "because of the good and visible label of our Gospel chariot vehicle, I got an opportunity to apply at Chitungwiza central hospital for Hospital ministry". He is very excited that he has been given the opportunity to preach, provide reading material and pray for the patients and staff at the Hospital.
He reports that as a result of being able to visit at the hospital he has managed to enroll fifty nurses at the hospital for World Bible school courses, he has been able to set up bible studies with some patients and their families, he has given reading materials to the patients and he has given the hospital two boxes of tracts to place in the wards.
In December (14th - 20th) Auswich and Chris Magadu and Nyamushamba did some World Bible School follow up work and held a mini seminar in Glennorah. They used the chariot tent (above) to study under and Auswich reports that they were so very grateful for the rain that fell during their campaign.
They report 8 baptisms as a result of this seminar and all converts were linked with their local congregations.
Amen. We will be campaigning in July again with a GCM team from South Africa, Venda, Harare and the USA. We will be working in the Beitbridge area where the GCM team planted a congregation last year, but at the same time visiting some congregations our Venda team planted in the Triangle area. Not forgetting our leadership seminar in Venda. Great doors are opening in the region with us encouraging our African brethren to cross borders and take the continent for Jesus. Please pray for Zimbabwe. Thank you Lord.
In November Bongani and his team headed to Botswana for a campaign. Below shows a whole lot of activity in Botswana. The team worked with the brothers from Serowe, who preached in Palapye, where 29 souls were baptised. They had one on one studies, visited clinics, schools and just outright sharing of Jesus.
The Benin team also reports that they have been to many places and they are so encouraged to hear that there have been baptisms after their passage through Dass, Natitingou, Parakou and other places.
The team then moved on to several villages and cities in the central part of Benin from November 5 - 23. Ten souls were baptized and 12 people enrolled in the WBS courses. The night time preaching was always well attended and there were also many children who came to see the bible videos.
As a result of the good reception the team had in this region they are planning to head back again in January 2016.
During December the Chariot is working with the congregation in Agla, a suburb of Cotonou. We will report on the results as soon as we receive them back from the team.
Willie Gley with the Togo mini chariot reports that there were ten souls baptized during a campaign in Kpele with the Gospel Chariot Team in November.
He then reported that the chariot moved on to the Central region. During their time there the team worked in 20 towns and visited 8 High schools. The team distributed tracts, enrolled students to WBS, planted a new church, held open air meetings at night and gave out several New Testament Bibles. Willie reports that at the end of this campaign there were a total of 53 souls added to the church.
In December the chariot travelled to Tubli Aveho were a new church was planted. Five people responded to the gospel. During their time in Tubli Aveho the team distributed tracts to the high school, they held one on one bible studies and conducted open air preaching at night.
Below shows the signing of the MOU between GCM South Africa and the now GCM Kenya. You can see Tom Opondo, Bro. Richard Karima (Eastleigh church leader) and Bro. Julius Ojunga from Kisumu, the west part of Kenya.
Dimpo and Machona then travelled up to Kisumu meeting, eating, greeting, preaching and getting to know more about Kenya as the New Big Gospel Chariot gets worked on back home.
Look at the skew Church of Christ sign! We printed 200 of them and nailed them on all Church of Christ buildings that don't have signs. We handed this one out as the chariots traveled from country to country.
Below shows some of the travels, the leaders getting together to discuss and pray and also a leadership seminar which took place with leaders being challenged to be more mission minded.
The Gospel Chariot in Liberia with Isaac Daye reports the following: "We successfully conducted our first WBS graduation in the city of Gbanga capital of Bong county in central Liberia on October 10th, a day that brought joy to the forty students who completed all the master series of WBS lessons, another 100 are currently working in their lessons for our next graduation."
The baptism of three of these students were the real graduation as they graduated from sinners to saints, that was our greatest joy.
Our Riso tract ministry continues to print and supply hundreds of tracts to individuals and congregations.
On November 27, Isaac reported that the Ganta campaign had yielded 15 baptisms and that the team were heading out for the Kakata lectureship and campaign.
"Great joy in heaven over one sinner saved, what will we say for 21 sinners saved and baptized from two campaigns conducted in Ganta and Kakata in Liberia, by our team in the month of November?"
Also, in addition to our joy, were the 80 WBS students who completed all their lessons and were graduated at three different locations (Lofa 18, Fleleh 12 and Monrovia 50).
November has come and gone as a very busy month for us. Well done Isaac and brethren.
Some years ago Ron Pottberg linked us up to Isaac Daye who oversees the Gospel Chariot in Liberia. Thank you Ron, you have been a good friend and partner in the gospel.
Below shows the arrival of 1,200 complete bibles with helps in the back for our Australian ministry. Please pray for us as we start reaching out in Australia from January, due to me living in Perth with my family and commuting to Africa. We need wisdom, guidance and creativity from our Heavenly Father. PLEASE SHOW US GOD.
That said, another container of 19,200 bibles has arrived in Pretoria, South Africa for outreach on that continent. We also received a small container of the Biblical Research Library books for bible students and preachers. Below you can see Dimpo with the South African shipment. To God be the Glory and the appreciation to all those who make these things happen. Thank you Lord.
Machona helping Patrick Kenee load 20 boxes of bibles. Patrick and his brother, Jeff, are working with us on this container of bibles.
Until next quarter in Him
Brother George Funk and the GCM Team
Brother George Funk and the GCM Team