For two millennia, God has been guiding the ministry leadership of the church from one generation to the next. In the book of Acts, the Apostle Paul was accompanied by Silas, and later Timothy joined them. Two of Paul’s Epistles were addressed to “Timothy, my true child in the faith.” One of the crucial principles of church leadership is training young people in the faith to become the next leaders of the church.[Read more…] about Generations Passing the Baton
The Testimony of Pastor Deuse
I was suffering from a demonic attack. I had begun suffering from a mental disorder at twenty-eight years of age and was going mad. By then, I was already married with three children. Finally, my parents and my wife tried to find a cure by consulting witch doctors in our region, but the situation worsened.
Finally, my wife and parents gave up looking for a solution, and I was abandoned at home. Out of that desperate situation, I was led to attend a church where they shared the gospel and prayed for me. That is how I received my deliverance from the demonic attacks. After that, I gave my life to Christ, got involved in ministry activities at church, and took on ministerial responsibilities. Now I am living in Nyamirama with my family, sharing the gospel, and starting a church.
I am attending the Uganda Bible College and studying with our God’s Embassy Pastors.
We serve in a predominantly Bakiga community that practices mixed subsistence farming. The dominant religion is a form of Anglicanism or Catholicism that does not believe in a true gospel of faith in Jesus Christ. Those churches require paying quarterly dues to reserve a place in heaven. Some members of the community practice witchcraft secretly. There are also some other cults, like the church of the prophets.
I have a substantial burden in my heart to preach the gospel of salvation to the people in our community, considering the suffering and bondage I was in before I came to know our Lord Jesus Christ. I look around our community and see many people suffering in the darkness under the demonic evil influence of witchcraft and false religious teachers in my community, so my heart goes out to proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ.
We are establishing home fellowships and meeting on Sundays in the township’s center.
There is much work to do to establish a church in this area. We are a remote village far from the schools and markets. With the White Fields’ support, I will be able to serve full-time, proclaiming the gospel and teaching young people so that one day they may be able to attend school.
We have seen God at work in the life of Gad Niwagaba, aged fifty-one years old, a resident of Kyiruruma cell in Kyantuhe village. He was demon possessed for over a month and could hear voices calling to him without seeing the people who were speaking. He said that sometimes he could hear sounds in his room and he tried to seek help from some witch doctors and it failed to work. His family invited us to pray for him, we visited him and prayed for him. God heard our prayers, and the spirits left him and he was healed. He has come to church to thank God for his healing.
We praise God for the people who have come to join us to worship our Lord and four have given their lives to Christ, two males and two females. Our church needs more land for the church to expand and for a nursery school.
Annet is thirty-two and a widow with three children, they are residents of Kagunga cell, Ntungwa parish. They live in a temporary house with two rooms. The names of the children are Sharon, aged ten, Danson, aged seven, and Gift is two. They survive through selling labor to others and subsistence farming on their small piece of land. We met Annet through home visits and found that before the death of her husband, she was a drunkard and quarrelsome. Now she was so full of stress that she could not care for her children and the demon spirits used to attack her when she was not drunk, especially during the night. This situation made her poor and for some time they lacked food. We prayed with her and that night she slept well, and the spirits did not come, she also arranged the next day for a family overnight and at that overnight, she gave her life to Christ. She is now an intercessor in the fellowship and has allowed her home to host the home fellowship with more than ten members. She is planning to build a permanent house. We pray that God will open the doors for finances so that she can also pay for school fees for her children. We are also praying for God to strengthen her faith.
We have choir where adults and youth meet and share the Word of God; they come to church to practice every Saturday for practice from five p.m. to six p.m. The Sunday school is where the children meet and share the Word of God through Bible stories and learn new dancing skills.
We train the members through the foundation class; and give them opportunities for leading intercession and church classes. The leader for the Sunday class is Innocent. Allen is an intercessor. Deus leads the choir, and the men are led by Alex.
Fausta is sixty-two and a widow with four grandchildren. She came to our church for prayer due to pain she had on her head and in her legs; we prayed for her, and she was healed. She came back to testify what the Lord had done for her and gave her life to Christ.
Eunice is married with four children, three of them have their own families. She is an Anglican that we met in the home of Annet. We shared the Word, and she was interested in our teaching and thought of joining the church to learn more about God. Eunice has been coming to church and has started bringing her friends. We pray the Lord will continue to draw her to Himself.
We are reaching out to the community through fellowships. This past month we visited thirteen homes and spoke with twenty-two males and thirty-three females.
The Testimony of Pastor Julius Mbesigire
My parents had nine children and were members of the Anglican church. Our family was known as a religious family, but we were never God-fearing because whenever one of us got sick, our father would send us to consult witch doctors.
Our father believed in the witch doctors and planned to start a family shrine seeking the spirits’ protection for the family. In primary six, I got ill and failed all my exams. My illness got worse until, mentally, I became a lunatic. My father spent much money going to different clinics, hospitals, and consulting witch doctors, but all in vain.
Finally, my father had a friend in our village who believed in Christ. He called him to come and see me and to pray for me that maybe His Jesus might help because my father had given up hope, and he was desperate. My father’s friend came and shared the gospel, and I believed in Jesus as my Lord and Savior. He prayed for me to be healed. I felt the heaviness lift and was eventually wholly delivered. I joined a church choir and served wholeheartedly for eight years.
But there was a problem because that church charged us taxes and required us to make monthly and yearly payments. They insisted on receiving the payments or threatened that we would lose our place in the church. I had nowhere to run to because I feared that I would fall sick if I left their church again.
Hope came when I started listening to Grace So Amazing radio program about the truth and grace in Jesus. Pastor Onesimus’ teaching was different and biblical; I said in my heart that I could leave this mission and join the Fellowship of God’s Embassy and learn more about true biblical teaching.
Julius was a subsistence farmer and a motorcycle mechanic. He joined God’s Embassy after hearing our radio program, Grace So Amazing. He joined a fellowship in his community and was identified as a leader. He has been studying with our pastors weekly and leading that Fellowship for two years. Due to his faithful ministry among the people that Fellowship has become a church. We plan to reach the surrounding communities through home fellowships and community outreaches. We are surrounded by people of different religions that need to hear the true gospel of Jesus Christ.
We have seen God at work in the life of Deborah, aged twenty-six, married to Obed Kiiza of twenty-nine years residing in Nyabitete cell. We met Deborah when she was pregnant; her pregnancy was challenging, and she was admitted to the hospital. We thank God that she was able to give birth to a healthy baby girl. Many women here lose their life while giving birth, but we thank God that Deborah is fine and the baby is growing.
We thank God for His saving grace and sustaining us in the ministry. The community is receptive to the Word of God and many people come to visit us. Some of these come to faith and surrender their lives to Christ. Many more are coming to join us for the first time to worship the Lord. This month, we baptized four members.
Our church needs are for land for the church building, machines for sound to advance our worship, and a school for our children.
We meet all the members willing to be intercessors every Wednesday for prayers. On Fridays, we meet for altar call and to share the Word of God. We also allow every person to participate in sharing Scripture verses in the fellowships. We let some ministers lead the church programs and Sunday school.
We have a choir that meets every Saturday for practice and the choir has eleven members. We begin with sharing the Word of God before we commence the practice. We have Sunday school for the children where they learn the Word of God through memory verses and Bible stories.
We met Joseph at his home. He is forty-five years old and married to Nantukunda Monic who is thirty-five years old. He had been a drunkard but after sharing the Word, he prayed to received Jesus Christ as His Lord and Savior. He now comes to church and testifies that since he received salvation, he no longer drinks alcohol.
We reach out to the community through fellowships. We have four fellowships that meet on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays. We also do home visits and this month we preached in eight homes, reaching out to twenty-three males and thirty-three females.
Pastor Gelevazio’s Testimony
I was born into a family of Catholics, and my father was a catechist at a church in Bugangari. I used to travel with my father to visit the sick members of the Catholic Church, but when we would get there, after praying with the sick, my father would advise them to seek help from either the witch doctor or a spirit medium.
Our Catholic faith was just for religious attachment, but we had continually worshiped spirits. What led to my salvation was due to sickness. I started suffering nightmares, where I would see a fire burning my house, and over time I became like a mad person. I had no peace at all. I consulted the witch doctors for help and tried the herbalists, but every attempt failed, I went to the hospital, and the doctors didn’t find anything wrong with me after much testing.
I was encouraged to try Jesus and see if I would find peace and escape the nightmares. The Christians shared the gospel, and I believed in Jesus giving my life to Christ. The nightmares left, and there was no longer any torment from the spirits. I thank God that He saved me from all the oppression.
I believe I am called to lead this church because this place is my home area, and people know my transformational testimony and the power of believing in Jesus to save those who are heavy-laden like I was. So I will point them to Jesus and proclaim the gospel to all the community members.
God is working in the life of Doreen, Rosalina’s fifteen-year-old daughter and a resident of Rutwe cell. Doreen woke up one day and was mad, they tried to get medical help, but nothing worked. She was mad for three years and since she was still young, her parents suspected that she was bewitched. They took her to different witch doctors, but her condition instead worsened. Her mother brought her to church when we were there for the Friday evening service and as a church, we stretched our hands towards her and prayed for her. The Lord delivered her, and she later joined us and gave her life to Christ. She accepted and chose to be baptized. Her mother is so grateful to the Lord for healing her daughter and we give all thanks and praise to the Most High God.
We praise God for the church’s presence in our community. People have come to testify that ever since God’s Embassy Katerampungu started, she has become a resting place for many even those who are not church members. Many people have changed from spirit worship and bondage to worshipping our Heavenly God Almighty and the freedom that He gives through accepting Jesus Christ.
We are increasing in number, people are coming to church and coming to Christ. Many are excited and willing to be baptised. This month we baptized six members.
We thank God for where we are renting the land, but we are still asking and waiting upon the Lord for the provision for the land of the church to be permanent. At that time, we will be able to put up a Sunday school structure for the children.
A family in our fellowship includes the family of Denis, twenty-four, who is married to Provia, twenty years of age with two children, Arnold, age three, and Ambrose, age two. They are residents of Katerampungu and live in a three-room semi-permanent house. They survive by selling their labor to do hard work in other people’s fields. We met them through home visits, shared the Word of God, and prayed with them. We invited them to come to church on Sunday and Denis did. While at the church, he gave his life to Christ after listening to the sermon and joining us. He also attends a home fellowship with us in Katerampungu. He later joined the church intercession department. We are praying that the Lord uses Denis as a vessel to reach his family because the other family members are not believers. We also pray that Denis will keep in faith and serve the Lord.
We have a church choir that meets every Saturday for practice. They begin with sharing the Word of God and encouraging one another to be strong in serving the Lord.
The Sunday school children meet to learn Bible stories and memory verses. The children also have fun with games. This photo is of a race to drink the fastest. This boy was the winner.
Six people gave their lives to Christ. Their names are Doreen, age thirteen, Rachel, age eighteen, Amutuhire, age nineteen, Kamusime Kellen, age fifty, Ambrose, age twenty-four, and Denis, age thirty-five. Total of two men and four females place their faith in God. Rachel, who is eighteen, lives with her grandmother and they both sell hard labor for survival. She dropped out of school because she had no money, and her grandmother was not able to raise enough to provide for them and also pay for her school fees. We pray that the Lord makes a way for Rachel to be able to go to school.
We reach out to the community through home fellowships, as a church we have two that meet on Wednesdays. We also do home visits, and this month shared the good news with twenty-three men and thirty-three women. We praise the Almighty God for His unending love and grace for the Katerampungu community.
Secondly, I am passionate about helping people know the Jesus that I have come to know and grow together in faith. So many people around our area are filled with religious practices that are not biblical. I have been studying at the Uganda Bible College, learning the truth in the Scriptures. I want to pass that knowledge on to our community by establishing a local church.
The gospel was proclaimed, and God moved in people’s hearts to bring life to those who believed. During Crossover on New Year’s Eve, one hundred people responded to the call to repent and believe in Jesus Christ.[Read more…] about Relying On God While Doing Our Part
Pastor Yoshiya Okita’s Testimony
I was born into a Christian family. My father is a pioneer church planter. From infancy, I grew up listening to Bible stories. Everything around me taught the Bible. I was involved with Christian picture books, Scripture Memorization, attending Sunday School, worship services, and family devotions. I accepted it all without question. Then, in third grade, I was baptized, just as the natural progression of things. I certainly believed in Jesus Christ, but I had just accepted what my parents taught me. It wasn’t my own faith yet.
I had always been a bit shy. After starting school, it was hard to get used to the new class each year, especially when I started 4th grade. I couldn’t break into the central circle of our classmates, and I felt like an outsider.
You get bullied when you’re on the fringe in Japan, and I went through bullying that whole year. One kid commented negatively about me, and instantly all the guys that had been my friends just dropped me and joined the in-crowd. I could see how easily friends could be divided swept away at that young age, and I realized, “This is what sin does to people.” I was caught in loneliness and anxiety from that point on.
When I was in Junior High, I started teaching Sunday School for the little kids in church, mostly because I was looking for a place to belong. One day I was arguing with my mother about how the church conducted Sunday School. She got exasperated and expressed, “I don’t know what’s the matter with you!” That question shook me to my core. I don’t know why I was so upset at the time, but I ran to my room sobbing, and I started to pray to Jesus. I asked him not to leave me alone. It was the first time I had reached out to Jesus in prayer. After that, everything changed, Jesus became alive to me, and I began a new life of faith.
Everything that I had been hearing about Jesus became real. Jesus was really alive, loved me, and was with me.
And, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.Matthew 28:20
From that point, I began a new life of faith, and I continually sought the Lord, learned to listen to His Word, and the Scriptures became the foundation of my life. Jesus Christ is my Savior and Lord.
This past November was a month of many inputs -learning new things -as a pastor. The KDK, White Fields Japan, Seminar allowed me to reflect on and summarize my pastoral philosophy again, especially with the opportunity to give a presentation and to receive feedback from other ministers with rich experiences. I was able to refocus on where I am at in our church planting with a more organized view. Above all, I received many encouraging confirming voices and comments and was assured about being prayed for by many people. We are thankful.
We held a memorial service for a late church member, Shigeo. All of Shigeo’s relatives were non-believers, and of the twenty or so people in attendance, only four were Christians, my wife and I, and my parents. The Word of God was read, and we spoke of salvation in Jesus Christ and the hope of heaven. After the funeral, His wife, Tomoko, promised to have regular contact with us and our church, and we invited her to our outreach events. We also invited their children to attend church to see what kind of place their father attended. We will continue to seek the salvation of his family and continue to fellowship with them. Please remember them in your prayers.
When discussing Christmas events, the church members said they want to have activities to serve local families and children. As a result of that discussion, we decided to challenge ourselves to hold a children’s cafeteria, inviting people from the community. We are thankful that church members expressed their desire to serve the local community rather than just having an event for their enjoyment. This is the first time for Sennan Chapel to have a church-wide ministry with church members participating as servants.
Pray for the Miyagi Junior High and High School Students Retreat with the Conservative Baptist Union. Pray for the relationship between the local children, their families, and the church. Pray that young Christian families will be raised in the church. Pray for Katsue, a church member in poor health. She visited a local doctor for a swollen fundus, went to a general hospital, and then went from the general hospital to a university hospital for more specialized tests. During the examination process, tumors were found in the fundus of her eye and her chest, and she is scheduled to go to another university hospital for further examination. Katsue has no close family nearby, so my wife and I take turns accompanying her to the hospital. Please pray for the doctor to be able to find out what the issues are in her body and for healing.
The summer school vacation started in mid-July and during that month we had many opportunities to interact with the elementary, junior high, and high school students. We are thankful for new encounters. Erkio (mother) and Kotone (daughter, eight years old) attended the Sunday school for the first time and then signed up for the sleepover event. Eriko was working at a church in a neighboring town and was introduced to our church by a missionary unit who had gone back to their home country. She also was acquainted with my wife because she used to send her older children to the school daycare center where my wife worked. We learned that Katone had not had many chances to hear Bible stories before, so we were grateful that we were able to share the gospel with her at length during the sleepover. Her mother came with her the first time, but since then Kotone has been coming to the church by herself using public transportation. We hope that her mother will be able to engage with us as a church fully as well.
- Pray for the salvation of the whole Yoshino family.
Masaya is nine years old and also participated in the sleepover and heard the story of the crucifixion at church. After returning home, Masaya shared with us that he searched, “Jesus Christ, nailed to the cross” online. He told us that he was strongly impacted by the crucifixion scene on the video. Masaya has an open heart to honestly believe what he has been taught. However, when he told his father what he had heard at church, his father told him it was a lie. Masaya seems confused about which is right, the church or his father’s words. His parents are divorced, and Masaya and his two older sisters live with their mother and only see their father on limited occasions. Their family uses a food bank run by a church of CBA and so we deliver food and have regular interactions and prayer time with the mother.
- Pray for Masaya and his family’s salvation.
This coming month we will be sending participants to a joint junior high and high school student retreat camp. I as a pastor will be serving there.
Other events for the children include the film screening, the summer festival, a hang-out event, and our regular Wednesday meetings.
Pray for follow-up after the summer youth camp. Pray for the decisions given and the horizontal connections between friends among churches to be maintained and to grow.
We are in contact with the Council of Social Welfare and local care managers to care for church members who have dementia. Pray that we will be able to open the way for our elderly people to attend worship services when and after they move into a care home facility.
I am currently taking an end-of-life counselor certification course at a local general non-profit entity. Pray for my qualification and also to be effectively used in this area to give advice to the community people so as to gain more contact in this vicinity.