The greatest commandment given to us is love; we are to love God with all our hearts and love our neighbors. This was our guiding principle as we set out to offer physical and emotional support to our church planters and their communities as they grappled with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Thanks to our partners, we were able to obey this commandment and safeguard livelihoods.
In East Africa, people in Turkana, Kenya, were among those who were reached with aid and the Gospel. Torrential rains and floods swept away homes and business premises, leaving many homeless and without income. One hundred fifty households were reached, enabling families to procure food, rebuild houses, and restock businesses. The aid targeted the entire community irrespective of their religious beliefs.
A disciple maker named Pauline was widowed in February and left to care for six children. She split her time between her small business and reaching her community for Christ, stretching every shilling and every minute to the maximum. With the dusk-to-dawn curfew instituted by the government in a bid to contain the spread of the virus and the floods that paralyzed the economy in Turkana, Pauline’s business suffered. She struggled to provide for her family, so the emergency aid was literally a lifeline. The relief did not go unnoticed by her sister, who was a non-believer. She felt compelled to be a part of the loving community of believers. Pauline’s sister accepted Christ, opened up her home, and a church was planted there. Our church planters in Turkana used such opportunities to reach the lost. They led 104 people to Christ and planted six churches.
Across the continent in West Africa, more than 100 training centers in nine countries received aid. They equipped the centers with handwashing points in conformity with the set restrictions. Thousands of church planters benefited from this as the centers resumed training. They were motivated to keep bringing the hope of Christ to those around them. As a result, evangelism efforts received a boost. In addition, 67 church planters and a few individuals from northern Nigeria also received relief. These church planters bought food items and shared them with the vulnerable in their communities.
The relief program contributed immensely to making disciples and strengthening churches planted in Africa. The testimonies that poured in from the recipients of the COVID-19 aid affirmed that obeying the Great Commandment is part and parcel of fulfilling the Great Commission. We pray that, with the support of our generous partners, we will continue to show the love of Christ to those in need.
In the last week of January, TTI’s East and North Africa field leaders gathered in Nairobi for our annual Vision Week. We reflected on the successes and challenges from 2019 and shared our vision for 2020. One of the things spoken and prayed about was igniting a...
A few weeks into the COVID-19 pandemic, Cotonou, the capital of Benin, buzzed with activity. Soap and water stations were set up in front of businesses, and almost everyone wore a mask covering their mouth and nose. Most laborers worried about contracting the virus...
“Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness sake, for theirs is the Kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 5:10) This promise is among many that Christians all over the world hold onto. For thousands in Nigeria, it is not just a Biblical principle but a reality that...