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Ministry on the Go: Siberia Edition!

Rich and Carl flew to Moscow and traveled to Krasnoyarsk, Siberia, where they met with church leaders and ministry leaders from the city to talk about their ministries and the potential of partnering in the future.

Rich presented on the ministry of FFICM to train nationals to follow-up with new believers so that new believers will have a lifelong faith in Jesus, and Carl spoke about the unique need to minister to pastors, who are often isolated from the rest of the church by their position, and face emotionally and spiritually grueling situations alone.

The church leaders were moved by the presentation and would like to partner in the future! There were ministry leaders from other Eastern European countries there who said they would love to have Rich and Carl come to work in their countries as well. The pastor of a retreat center outside of Krasnoyarsk opened up to Carl and said that he felt as though Carl had come to speak directly to his heart.

Pictured above are Roman, Carl, and Rich, after praying with church leaders

While in Krasnoyarsk, they discovered that the follow-up training they were anticipating running in Ungut with 30 pastors from the area, only had about 8 registered, as the person Roman had been relying on to arrange the training (and had travelled twice to meet with) had become serious ill, and hadn’t been doing any of the arrangements. Rich, Carl, and Roman agreed that it was still worth it to train the 8 pastors and prepared for the journey to the remote location of Ungut.

As they drove to the retreat center in Ungut, Siberia, far outside of any form of cell or internet communication, Carl ministered to the pastor, Maxim, who was traveling with them, by having Roman translate for him, while the driver drove like a madman through the icy roads!

For the last bit of the journey, everyone had to get out of the car and ride in a cart drawn by a tractor. It was freezing cold, but they were all in good spirits and looking forward to the ministry.

When they arrived at the retreat center, they discovered that the 8 people they had been told about were actually recovering addicts, some of whom weren’t Christians.

Rich and Carl spoke to the group, and one of them, Yuri, made a decision to receive Christ at the meeting.

At this point, Rich and Carl decided it would be the best use of resources to return home and plan trainings for another time, as their ministries focus on equipping nationals to minister to new believers and on encouraging pastors!

Roman, whose ministry is primarily evangelism, stayed in Ungut to minister to the few new believers, and also shared the gospel with 30 children!

We thank you all for your prayers for the trip and for Rich, Carl, and Roman as they worked together! We would deeply appreciate your prayers for protection and wisdom for possible future trips to Siberia, as the enemy was able to thwart the training in Ungut by striking at the pastor who was responsible for the organization. Please pray for hm and his family. We thank God for bringing eternal fruit from the trip, and for accomplishing his purposes!

We were blessed to minister in this beautiful country, and pray that God continues to break in to Siberia in power!

 

Rich GardnerMinistry on the Go: Siberia Edition!
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Adventures in Kansk

Kansk is a beautiful town on the edge of the river Kan–a river which was once the site of a terrible battle, after which legend has it, the river tasted of blood for many years. Now the river Kan is a peaceful city where a pastor and his family hosted Sarina, Rich, and Roman in Kansk while they carried out their ministry.

pastor and daughter

While in Kansk, the pastor’s best friend, who is not a Christian, asked if Sarina would visit his family and hang out with his daughter, who is interested in America and is learning English. Her name is Ana–though they call her Anya. Sarina loved hanging out with Anya and her family; they talked about their different school systems, social media (Russians don’t use Facebook very much, they have their own version) and their families. They both like a lot of the same music and tv shows because Anya listens to a lot of American music and movies!

Sarina was overwhelmed by the hospitality of Russians in general and especially Anya’s family, “They offer you tea or coffee every five seconds and keep asking until you say yes, so you have to drink really slowly! They really pampered us.”

“They love their fruit and their drinks– they offer you tea or coffee every five seconds, keep asking until you say yes so you have to drink really slowly. They really pampered us!”

Christians don’t drink in Russia as drinking to excess has become such a problem, but they all drink Kvas, a Russian non-alcoholic drink that Sarina described as, “kind of like Kombucha, but instead of tea, it’s fermented bread excess.” They also drink a green drink called Tarragon that “looks like swamp water, but is bubbly and sweet!”

Anya’s family had Sarina over at their “dacha”—a summer house which is right on the banks of the river Kan. They have a banya built into their house. They told Sarina hat they sleep in their banya in the winter, which she could not believe she was hearing accurately until she saw them moving sleeping bags and blankets out of it before they turned it on.  

Sarina did the banya, 7 or 8 times–you go into the hot steam and then run out and jump into the river. She even up to the highest level (where it burns when you breathe and is 203 degrees!) and received the traditional Russian whipping with hot birch branches to improve circulation, before then running out and jumping into the river. They were all impressed with how many times Sarina let herself be hit with birch branches!

the river Kan

After the banya she went out to feed the fish with Anya. She had a hard time understanding that they really meant they were going to feed the fish, so she kept saying that she was a vegetarian, but at last they led her out to the river and she and Anya fed fish pieces of bread and relaxed while while a lightning storm flashed over the river.

Sarina and the rest of the team thanks you for your prayers for them on the trip as we continue to to get to know Russian culture and pray that our partnership in the gospel with them will continue to be fruitful!

 

Rich GardnerAdventures in Kansk
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Nigeria Evangelism conference 2017!

The Nigeria evangelism conference was a powerful time—The conference was held in a building that seated 1,000, but there were 2000-2500 additional people outside! The theme of the conference was, “The True Gospel”. Each of the speakers spoke about the nature of the true gospel, and warned about alternative gospels (such as the prosperity gospel and the gospel of good works). The prosperity gospel especially has taken root in Nigeria and other West African countries; everyone was greatly encouraged to hear so many wonderful teachings about the true gospel!

FFICM’s staff and volunteers conducted follow-up trainings with the 3000-3,500 evangelists that were there, along with smaller group sessions. Although we had some technical difficulties related to the printing of the materials, everyone was greatly encouraged by the teaching.

The governor of plateau state even showed up with his entire staff! He shut down the government in order to come and attend the conference. 

Rich also spoke on the true gospel on Friday following an all-night prayer vigil with all of the evangelists.

The FFICM team met with the Cameroonian delegation, and the Cameroonians urged FFICM to consider cancelling our post-conference trip to Cameroon, as there were youth from the English-speaking part of Cameroon planning to declare independence in early October. The military had increased its presence, and there was talk of shutting down the borders (which would have meant that the staff would have been trapped in the country, unable to return home.) FFICM decided to reschedule tentatively for November.

Please pray for the evangelists as they will conduct a massive joint outreach in the north at the end of October, and pray also for peace in Cameroon!

Thank you for your prayers and support;our hearts were greatly encouraged by this conference. We are in awe of the love, courage, and devotion to the true gospel shown by all brothers and sisters present–and we pray that you are encouraged with them as well as you are true partners with them in prayer!

Rich GardnerNigeria Evangelism conference 2017!
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God’s Bridge

Bonga is an economically depressed area far out in the wilderness, where there is no running water. They ended up changing accommodations mid-trip, because half the team got tired of having only Rich’s old coffee pot to heat water to bathe with!

Animism is the main competing religion to Christianity; the evangelists from the area told Rich there are over 1,000 witch doctors active. Bonga is well-known for a couple of other reasons as well, it is within a half a mile of where coffee was discovered, and has a beautiful natural bridge called “God’s bridge”. 

When Rich, Roman, Eskendir and Eyasu arrived, their local hosts urged them to come on a walk to see it before the training, saying it was only ten minutes away. They decided to go see it, as Eskendir also told the group that he had been baptized there in secret during communist times!

By the time Rich, Roman, and Eyasu realized it would take much longer than ten minutes, they had already been fighting their way through deep mud down treacherously steep terrain for so long that they did not want to give up. Rich said that this was by far the most physically challenging trip he has ever gone on–and he has hiked over mountains to reach people groups in Nigeria!

Along the way, they also saw a poisonous green snake that their guides told them if it bit any one of them, they would die if they didn’t get help in time.

The bridge was stunning to see, and Rich was glad to have seen it. However, on the trip back up, he fell completely down at last, was covered in mud, and had to be dragged out by the arms by the others. By the time they fought their way up to the training location, they were an hour and a half late. The rest of the team wanted Rich to take time to clean up, but Rich walked straight into class, and said, “Now, the rest of the team may remember it differently…” and proceeded to tell a long tale wherein he singlehandedly pulled all of the other men up the hill of mud, and fought off a poisonous snake to save their lives. The entire class howled with laughter through the story, and the training began with everyone in high spirits.

In Bonga, we had planned for 60 evangelists, but the local church paid for twenty three more of their people to come and join, calling back missionaries and workers from hundreds of miles away. Eyasu has already reported that they have begun training 1,121 church leaders and members in the evangelism and follow up training.

They need prayer as they begin doing this! Please pray for us and for them as we need more resources, more personnel and more funding, to do more trainings in Ethiopia to meet the need, and as they continue to work for the Lord in this challenging area!

Rich GardnerGod’s Bridge
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Eyasu’s report: trainees to reach 2,667!

Our training went very well by God’s grace, though it was so exhausting! Rich’s commitment is very encouraging. I’ve known him since 2007, studying together at Western Seminary, and the more I know him the more I see his commitment and strength.
We had two trainings in two weeks.The first week we trained 81 evangelists. We invited and budged for 60 but church leaders wanted to train more; at their own expense, they added 21. It was so awesome.

The second week we invited 60 again, as it is always our plan to train effectively and to have enough ministers for the area but again, 4 more people came, so we trained 64.

The total number of trainees was 145. When they go back to their assigned areas, they promised to train and disciple immediately, and have already written down the names of 2,667 people that they plan to train and disciple in how to evangelize and follow-up!

At the same time the trainers and trainees will evangelize and bring people to the knowledge of Jesus Christ.

I discussed with Rich that as we train them how to follow up new believers we have also to follow our trainees up too so that they may do as they have promised.

Please pray for Ethiopia and for all of these committed new trainees!

Rich GardnerEyasu’s report: trainees to reach 2,667!
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Peter’s report: Taraba

In May we went to Takum, where the headquarters of CRCN and RCCN are located, to conduct a refresher training for those we trained in October of last year. Some of the leadership of the churches and denominations were there. The leadership of New life for All also participated throughout the training.

This refresher training opened my eyes to see how much we need to go back to places where we have trained people, to see what they are actually doing, and how they are doing it—and to learn how we can help them. We need to know answers to questions like these: What are the challenges they are encountering as they begin to use the training? How can we help them to overcome some of these challenges they are encountering? What were their plans during the strategic planning and how are they working on achieving them? How can we improve on our trainings or materials? We were able to ask these questions of our trainees in Takum and to help them work through the challenges they were facing.

We had series of obstacles and challenges on the trip.  As we left Jos, after we had picked up all of the seven sets of the follow-up materials, we forgot the Gospel cards in the office! The good thing was that all those who were with us in Takum were people we had trained before, so all of them came with their own materials and that made it easier to teach. But on the second day we discovered that the follow-up materials we had brought had been printed with mistakes—some of the pages had been mixed up. So we had to call Jos so that they could print the materials correctly, and send them to us.

We then left for Jalingo, but on the way, the top gasket of our car blew off, and the car had to spend the night being repaired. We arrived in Jalingo to discover that there had been serious miscommunication between the leadership there and the training schedule had not been arranged—so we had to immediately work to reschedule the trainings for the middle of the week, and split up into two groups.

We started in the first group with just 12 people, but by the time of our short break, there were 26 people. The people that came had all come for the training before. Because of this, it ended up being a refresher training. We asked them to tell us what has been happening with the training they received before. They started by the explaining how they had been going out as individuals to use the materials, but not as a group. We strongly encouraged them to strategize together and to support one another. Those we had trained from CRCN (in Takum) had gone out as a team to use the materials. They were able to plant a church—their ministry was much more effective when they worked together! Also, those who went to Kebbi State with New Life for All for the outreach in October used the materials there. 

Others shared that they have not been using the materials because they did not fully understood how to begin to use them on their own, but with what we have taught them now, they understand how to work together and think strategically, and will be able to effectively use the materials.

 One of the leaders said that he did not actually fully understand the materials when we taught them the last time, but with this second teaching he now understands exactly how we expect him to use the training to evangelize and to work with new believers.

After that week, we went to a different location in Jalingo, where we were to meet pastors from different denominations based on the arrangements we had last year with one of the reverends from Reformed Church of Christ in Nations (RCCN). He was to work on the arrangement with other pastors in his denomination as well as the bishop of the Lutheran church (who was also among the people we trained at Numan in 2015). The bishop was to talk to 20 pastors from his denomination. There was a miscommunication when the man we sent to set the training up went to see Reverend Ande. The second time he went, he did not meet him personally, but left the message with his secretary, who did not deliver the message, and so they were not expecting us. This was why the mobilization was a failure. Also, a part of the United Methodist Church refused to come, because we had invited a faction of the Methodist church which is revolting against their bishop.

With regard to the Methodist faction that is splitting, the General Secretary for New life for All went and talked to the bishop to let him know that we were coming again this time to train pastors from the Methodist Church. But when we arrived at the venue, there was nobody in the venue. So Reverend Ande called some of the leaders of his denomination, and asked them if they could send some of their pastors and evangelists to attend the training starting Wednesday. Also  a man we who came with us from Jos called some his friends from the Redeemed Peoples’ Mission church, and we were able to have 23 people who came from Wednesday to Saturday.

The vice president of RCCN (who is one of those that sent his pastors to be part of the seminar) came again to see how we were doing and how many of his pastors were there. He said, “This is what the church needs now in a time like this”. He wants to speak with us to find a time we can come and do a presentation about our training to the general counsel (of which he and Reverend Ande are members). He wants us to come next year, or at the end of the year to train more than a hundred people. He also said that the RCCN and CRCN together have over a thousand pastors (five hundred in each denomination) that he would like us to train.

After the training, some of the pastors gave their testimonies;

One of them said this seminar is different from any seminar he has attended because this training made him understand that we need to go back to the basics, to the foundational issues of our faith, when working with new believers. He said that this seminar taught him how to relate with new converts. He said, “The materials were very simple, and I learn how to bring my teaching to the new believer in simple terms, the way one would talk to a young child.”

Another pastor said, “I went somewhere and opened the Gospel card, and some people were just looking, and they started coming to me. I started preaching to them, and they all gave their lives to Christ.”

One of them said, “I believe with what I have learned here, my life will never remain the same. From the gospel card through the seven follow-up lessons, the new believer will now not be a foreigner to me. I want to assure this ministry that I will go back and impact the church and the pastors that have not been able to come here.”

One of them said that before they were using a theological strategy in which they tried to impress the new believer with how much they had learned about the faith and how much they knew, but this training showed us how to keep it simple, to keep our teaching at the level of the new believer just as one would approach a new born baby. He said, “This actually changed my perspective, and now I will not over-feed the new believer.” He is among the eight people who will be going to a village where there is no church in order to plant a church there. So he believes that the materials will be of great help to them.

In the same way Rev. Collins said that even though this is his twenty second year in ministry but he has not attended a training like this anywhere, in which people are taught to relate to new believers, and how to translate wha they have learned to a new believer in order to enable them to have assurance in their faith. He said, “I have also learned how to be a model to the new believer. I have already planned to start the training with the elders of the church, the leaders of the agencies in the general church. I want to be sure that every member of the church knows his or her faith in Christ.” 

We then concluded with the presentation of certificates the the prayer of dedication. They also wrote down their phone numbers and emails so that they can communicate with one another. They want to call the group together again some time to hear what is happening with each member.

 

Rich GardnerPeter’s report: Taraba
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God’s people rise from the ashes

The Ekklisiyar Yan’uwa Nigeria-EYN (Church of the Brethren) headquarters is at Kwarhi, roughly 10 kilometers from Mubi, a town that was destroyed by the Boko Haram fighters. We were 30 minutes from the Sambisa forest, which is the location the Boko Haram operate from. Most of the churches, if not all, in the town had been destroyed last year, and many Christians burned alive within. Our coming there was a great encouragement to the church, as they saw our co-worker Rick had come from overseas and the rest of us had come from other places to help them rebuild the spiritual lives of the people.

The training was originally planned for 120 people, but we ended up with only 51 people. Some of the church leaders whose job it was to pass along information to the coordinators did not do so. This denomination has about 70 districts, and all the district coordinators and secretaries were invited, along with the evangelism leaders of other churches. But the president of the denomination was there to welcome us and the director of evangelism and all of the other coordinators stayed all through with us during the training. We had to start the training early in order to be done in time for people to make it home by 6 pm—all of the roads are blocked by 6 in an attempt to protect travelers on the road from being killed by the Boko Haram.

The first day of the training was about the gospel tract presentation, and they were trained in how to communicate the basic things that a person needs to know to accept salvation, as simply and clearly as if they were talking to a small child. This approach was interesting to many; they said after the training that they felt as though they now knew how to reach out to people in their area. So when it was time for the field practical, they all went out to evangelize, and used the tract. The next day they came with reports of how they were using it; of how many were giving their lives to Christ and of how effective the tract is in catching peoples’ attention.

The outreach was an encouragement to all who participated, even in the midst of fear of the recent attacks. The trainees were surprised that when they went out and shared their faith, many people were anxious to receive Christ, and were willing to come for the next day for the follow-up training. The trainees think that the receptivity of the local people to the gospel has a lot to do with what the Boko Haram have done—people are afraid of death.

The director of Evangelism of the EYN Church, Rev. Daniel, who stayed throughout the training time and listened to all the sessions as we were teaching, said, “You have really helped the EYN church. This is what the church needed, but I was not sure who to call on to come and help us…I believe the Lord is going to do greater things than the outreach we have had already, as a result of this training.” On the last day he spoke and said, “We want to thank Firm Foundation for honoring our invitation to come and train us in this follow-up and evangelism and how to begin to disciple the new converts.” He also pleaded that we not be discouraged by the number of the people who had not come, because now that they have seen what we can do for them, they will do everything they can and prepare even beyond what we expect.

Evangelist Helen said, “I have been attending seminars on evangelism in Jos and in other places but I have not learned what I learned during this training; how to relate with the new believer and to follow him with the mindset that he is like a new baby that I have to handle with care.”

Another man said, “This is quite different from the way we pastors have taught people here. We have been more like fault-finders. But I have learned a lot from the trainers since we have started this training. They were not looking for faults in people. Even in the training, they did not focus on pointing out what people did wrong, they asked each trainee to think about what they would do differently, which makes the person feel confident and encouraged and willing to try again.”

Mr. Luka, who is from Gombe State, said he has learned how to take initiative in evangelism and follow-up without waiting for his leader to give him constant direction on what to do or where to go. During the devotions, he felt that he learned that some pastors are like wheel-barrows; when you push, they will move, and wherever you stop, there they will remain until somebody pushes them again. He said, “I was waiting on my superior to give me directions, but during this training I felt convicted about doing that and I am ready to move on with what I have learned from here. I pray that the Lord will give wisdom as I begin to put it into practice”.

Another trainee said, “I have known God since I was a child, but I became lost, I was not praying as I am expected to, I was not witnessing to others, I was not living to the standard that God has required of me. When I came here, I listened to the teaching and I was just weeping quietly. I feel refreshed now, and I want to continue with this work. I have learned not just how to witness to unbelievers with patience and how to follow them up, but also how to relate to God personally as a son relates to his father.”

A trainee called Martha lamented that she has a lot of unbelievers in her house that she has not yet taken time to reach out to, and here we had in our company a white man (Rick) who traveled all the way to come and teach us how to reach out to our people in spite of the risk of this area. She said, “This training encouraged me about the need to devote my time and life to witness to others.”

Elder Aminu spoke on behalf of the coordinators and said that the life the trainers had led among them during the training was also a lesson to all of them, especially the way the trainers were relating with one another without showing any seniority or racial differences. It encouraged the coordinators as to how they should work with others under them. He then begged that we not be discouraged with the turnout and decide not to come to EYN again, that even though there were few of them there, they will put what they have learned into practice, and EYN will experience a change, and we will see the result of our work.

So far, one of the women that we trained has come and collected materials because she is preparing to train 150 people! Please pray for her, and for the other trainees as they minister in this highly dangerous area where they all have suffered terrible persecution.

Richard GardnerGod’s people rise from the ashes
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More on the Mbingo, Cameroon training–Peter Wash

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The training at Mbingo was a huge success with a good number of attendants. It took us by surprise, as the number of trainees we expected was 100, but the leadership in Mbingo begged that others be allowed to come in, so in the end we had over 200 participants.

The first day was the day of training on the use of the gospel card. To our surprise it took less time than usual for the trainees to understand the concepts on each successive page. They seemed to grasp right at the outset what we were trying to communicate and understood each page better because of that.

The participants after the training went out to practice what they had learned. They were deeply impressed by their experience of witnessing using the gospel card. Many of them told us that they love evangelism, but hadn’t felt equipped to go out and share, but with the gospel card, they can now go out with all boldness, feeling confident that the card is appealing to people, and is an effective tool to bring them to repentance.

Before they all went for the sharing, they were divided into groups: Mbingo 1, a. Lower quarters b. Upper quarters, Mbingo 11 a. lower quarter’s b. Upper quarter’s, Jones quarter’s, Jichami quarter’s, Mbingo Village etc. The outcome of the sharing was massive, we had over 107 people give their lives to Christ, and this the number only from those who kept track and submitted their results.

The follow-up series was a new experience for the trainees. They were glad and excited to learn how to provide follow-up for new believers, because they had not had it when they had first come to the faith. Some of the pastors shared with us that while they do have books and manuals on discipleship, they found our training to be both simple and effective. All of the trainees, after learning the follow-up lessons 1 & 2, were commissioned and prayed for as they then went out to follow up with the people who had come to Christ as a result of their sharing.

The participants got together to discuss where they all came from and formed an evangelism team so that they can continue to work together to share the gospel and follow up with new believers after the training!

Please pray for the trainees as they continue to share their faith and follow up with the new believers! Praise God for his work in Mbingo.

Richard GardnerMore on the Mbingo, Cameroon training–Peter Wash
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Nigeria Advanced Training and Testimonies from Cameroon–from Peter Wash’s report

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We started the year by receiving news of the wonderful results of the trainings FFICM has run in the past year. Then, after one week of prayer and fasting, we held a one week training in Jos for those who lead trainings. People all over the world flew into Jos.

We had Richard Gardner and Rick Cordell from the US, Roman Baronowski from Poland, Eyasu Farenj and Eskindir Elemeyahu from Ethiopia, Habibu, Umar and Tsahiru from Niger Republic. Of the Nigerian FFICM team members we had myself, Sunday Mallam, Ishaku Pate, Ibrahim Itse, and from other ministries in Nigeria, Joshua Izang, Samuel Adang, Moris Izang and Sarah Izang from Rural Frontier Missions, Innocent Samson and Benjamin Yamden from New Life for All, and Samuel Fom from COCIN. These people were all drilled as to how to teach in such a way as to stimulate a change in attitude that results in action on the part of the new believer; and not just to teach to impart information. They were also taught how to draw new believers into a relationship with God, to begin to love God and to put their faith in God more. After that we picked some of those that we had trained and went with them to Cameroon so that we could all run a one week program for trainees there.

The training in Fundong began with over 120 people (as apposed to the 100 that we planned for). In our next area, in which we had also planned to have 100 participants, there were more than 200, so we had to begin to make arrangements as to how to stretch the few materials that we had. When we asked them to go out to evangelize as part of the practical, every single person went out, including the leaders of the local churches that were there.

They all came back with testimonies of how people were listening to them, and prayed to receive Christ, from even the most hostile religions. One of the groups shared the gospel to 65 people in one night and 36 prayed to receive Christ. In a second group, they shared with 67 people and 58 of these prayed to accept Christ.

After this we separated them into four groups so that each trainer could observe and evaluate how they were doing, and so as many people as possible could practice teaching the class.

By Thursday when we invited them to worship God, people started dancing and singing with joy because of what they had learned. When we asked them to write and let us know what they valued most of what they had learned, many people wrote that they loved the gospel tract, which was so simple and straight forward; others stated that they were most excited about what they have learned about follow-up. A lot of them said they hadn’t known before that it was important to follow up with new believers; some even wrote that they were not followed up and had struggled with a lot of challenges, such as not knowing how to pray or study the Bible, having no interest in witnessing, or they did not actually love God or other believers. On Thursday evening, one of the trainees kept us awake for two hours, from 8 to 10 pm talking to us about her life and how this training has brought her back on track with God—she had previously decided not to have anything to do with the church anymore, but as we were teaching, she felt that her love for God will draw her back and enable her to continue relating with those of her church that have offended her.

 

After the teaching, we had the joy of presenting certificates to all of the trainees. After this we prayed to commission them, and all that were trained were asked to kneel while all of the ordained ministers and trainers present prayed for them.

We have over one hundred testimonies from the trainees, here is a small representation of some of them!

One pastor who was trained shared that he went out and began talking about the gospel with somebody, but the person did not want to listen because he was sick. So the pastor and his companion asked him whether he was willing for them to pray for him? They prayed for him that he would be healed from his illness, and left. The next day he called them to tell them that they should come, he wanted to accept Christ, because yesterday he was healed after they prayed, so he wanted to give Jesus his life. So the pastor went and led him in the prayer of confession. He was very happy after that, and they arranged another day that the pastor could come and meet with him to follow up with him. This pastor also spoke with a woman named Marceline who prayed to receive Christ. The next day, when they met Marceline for follow-up, they met another woman there who had given up on life and was considering committing suicide, but instead, she prayed that day to receive Christ.

Another woman from the training shared with five members of her family, and they all prayed to receive Christ. She shared the follow up materials the next day, after which her neighbor asked her to come to her house to speak with her family. So she went and shared with six people in that house, and they all prayed to receive Christ.

The Director of Evangelism of the Baptist Church was among the participants who stayed throughout the training said, “This is what we have been longing for in this Church.  We have been wanting to go out to evangelize as a group, but we didn’t know how to do it. You have come at the right time.”

A lady who had been trained with Campus Crusade for Christ said, “I have neglected the work of witnessing that I used to do before, but I have been revived by what you have taught us! I shared with many people during the three days we all went out together, and I feel so encouraged. Your materials were so simple to handle and speak right to the level of a new believer.”

Ebang Eric also said, “I have been struggling in my spiritual life to live a victorious life; it felt impossible for me, but I have learned during this training how I must live in the Spirit by allowing Christ to control my life, and to listen to Him through his Word and other believers who God can use to speak to me. I also learned that I need follow-up to be able to stand firm in my faith, and I need to follow up new believers to help them become mature in their faith.”

Nkwain Betila Mbu wrote, “Before I came here I could not really share the word of God with boldness but because of this training I am able to do it. When reading my Bible, I used to just read to extract a couple of points, but with this training I have learned how to look for what is God teaching me about Himself, about my life, and  about others. I have learned that nothing can snatch me from the Father’s hand. I have learned how to preach to people irrespective of their denominations.”

Marvelous Nanye also wrote that before coming to this training her spiritual life was weak, “I had no zeal to share my faith with others, I felt too proud.  I used words that are not good for a Christian to use, I didn’t pray, but I expected God to answer me. Because of this training, I realized my mistakes. I prayed to God, I went out to witness, and many souls were won to Christ. I pleaded with the Holy Spirit to direct me in my spiritual life now.”

Rev Joel said, “This is a very special training that is very clear and shows how to present the gospel briefly without causing any arguments. The follow-ups are wonderful, they relate easily to everyday life experience.”

Another trainee wrote, “I am so glad because of this program— before the seminar began, I had not learned how to preach, and any time I wanted to preach fear would just fill me. In this program I learned how to be bold.  I have always been ashamed to preach to people of other religions, but during this program I was able to preach to a Muslim who prayed to receive Christ. He asked me several questions, but I was able to give him the answers. I believe it was the boldness you people gave me that made me to be able to preach. I promise you before we meet again you will hear of the many things I have done with this training.”

Ngong Sandra said, “This training has done a wonderful thing in my life. Before coming here, I was born again, yes, but I had never undergone any follow up. I had a list of things I knew I should do as a Christian, but the greatest challenge in my life was sharing Christ with others. I wondered how to start and worried about what to do if the person said no or was already a Christian. Here I have learned so many things that I did not fully understand. Leaving here, I believe that I will be a good evangelist by God’s grace. It has always been my dream to do so, and so I thank God I have been trained to do it well, and I trust God to help me. I hope that the lives of the people around me like my family, friends, and classmates, will never be the same, with God being my helper. From the bottom of my heart I thank God and the trainers for this training, it has been wonderful.”

We thank God for his work among the trainees, and look forward to continuing to work in Cameroon, by His grace!

Richard GardnerNigeria Advanced Training and Testimonies from Cameroon–from Peter Wash’s report
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Safe arrival in Bamenda, and a flood of eager trainees

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We praise God for our team’s safe arrival in Cameroon! It was a difficult journey. The temperature on the trip soared above 100 degrees, and they could not make almost any stops because of the danger of kidnapping. The team sounds exhausted from dehydration during the journey, but thankfully the location where they are now are at a higher elevation and is cooler.

When they arrived, they found that many more trainees than had signed up were hoping to join. Rich’s group is going to try to train 190, by teaching into the night. Peter’s group will have at least over 120. Unfortunately, they’ve had to turn many people away, as they are already well over their capacity.

The team is staying at a hospital compound in Bamenda, and there are many doctors and nurses who are asking to join the training, because they want to minister to their patients. It is hard for our team to turn people away, but Lord willing, we can make a return trip to continue to offer trainings!

They all appreciate your prayers, and are excited by the level of enthusiasm in the region, despite the difficulties of the journey.

We will keep you updated as we hear more!

 

Richard GardnerSafe arrival in Bamenda, and a flood of eager trainees
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