February 2017: See what great things the Lord has done!

“Sing to the Lord, praise his name; proclaim his salvation day after day. Declare his glory among the nations…” Psalm 96: 2-3a (CSB)

Click here to be taken to a printable full color pdf of this newsletterSpecific highlights for several partners:

  • Mission Evangelique du Nord d'Haiti, in Plaine du Nord, Haiti - where nothing but Voodoo was practiced 40 years ago, Pastor Thony's dream has grown into 21 congregations providing “a great testimony for the gospel of our Lord" and who are "well received" by the population, a regular radio broadcast, schools serving more than 3,500 children, a clinic ... (MENH).
  • Good News Theological College and Seminary, in Accra, Ghana - Read about library developments, both short and long term teaching and ministry opportunities, the upcoming visit from the National Accreditation Board, the registration of a new name for the seminary, and more.  (GNTCS).
  • India - Bethel Mission (KGF); and Jehovah Shammah Children's Home (JSCH)

Current Prayer Concerns

A brief list to guide your prayers for our brothers and sisters as they labor in the work to which they have been called:

 

For a printable full-color 4 page PDF copy of this newsletter, click here.

Partnership at Work - In Haiti

Mission Evangelique du Nord d’Haiti (Evangelical Mission of North Haiti, MENH)

Pastor Thony Paul (MENH)When Pastor Jean Berthony Paul (Thony) began the work near Cap Haitian in northern Haiti more than 40 years ago, the practice of Voodoo was widespread in Plaine du Nord and the local Voodoo priests and shamans exerted enormous influence over the people of the area. Despite the great hardship and frequent physical attacks Pastor Thony faced as he began his ministry, he persisted. Ultimately a small body of believers gathered and established a church. Pastor Thony recently wrote that more than 50% of the local population have now stopped participating in Voodoo practices.

Today twenty-one churches scattered across Haiti are part of the MENH organization. Two were added in 2016 and one of these is led by Pastor Jean Alin, who had received a scholarship from East West InterKnit (EWI) that enabled him to attend Bible school. All these churches conduct prayer groups and hospital visitation, literature distribution and outdoor evangelism in addition to ministries geared specifically to the needs of children, youth, and women. Pastor Thony wrote that all these activities are "well received by the local population." He reported that 181 people made professions of faith during 2016.

Pastor Thony also has a one hour radio broadcast six days a week in addition to his other responsibilities. There is little way of knowing how many may have come to Christ because of these radio messages.

Photo form the 2016 March revival. 

MENH held special evangelistic meetings from February 5—12, 2017, during which 55 people committed their lives to Christ. [March 2016 gathering is shown here]

 

Since the children of the new believers were being excluded from the other local school, Pastor Thony launched an elementary school to educate them. This first school served only about 9 children. Pastor Thony believes the school should become a place where children not only learn to read, write and do arithmetic, but also where they come to know Jesus and consequently have an influence on family and friends. They began accepting children from the community and it is clear that some of the church growth in Plaine du Nord is due to the changed lives of the children and the loving care received in the school. MENH now runs twelve primary and four high schools. Some parents are able to pay small fees for their children to attend but a majority need ‘scholarships’. Through the partnership of many of you, EWI has been able to provide needed supplemental funds to keep the schools open and serving so many. They currently have more than 3,500 students.

With the help of EWI, MENH established a clinic in Plaine du Nord, the only clinic at the time in that area. Their current staff of 19, including a qualified doctor, serve those who could not get to hospitals in the city and who could not pay for hospital services. Thony said that, because of the services provided by the clinic, people are more open to the preaching of the gospel. In early 2016 a former clinic administrator walked away with much of their equipment which they were not able to retrieve. EWI has helped to replace the equipment and supplies as funds allow. The clinic has faced many challenges but has survived and is currently serving as many as 700 patients per month.


Partnership at Work - In Ghana

Good News Theological College and Seminary* in Accra

 Worship at an AIC
 

Worshiping at an African Indigenous Church (AIC)

 Searching the database
 

Students using the computer database to search the library for material to support their studies.

The GNTCS fall semester ended December 16th and spring semester began January 20th. In addition to the seminary classes, off-campus training programs, workshops, and seminars were held in various places. In one instance sixty students graduated with a Certificate in Leadership after taking a one year course conducted for leaders of a large African Indigenous Church (AIC).

The National Accreditation Board (NAB) is expected to visit the campus soon. The seminary has completed a number of updates and repairs in anticipation of their visit. They have also added a well-qualified Registrar as recommended by the NAB during their last visit. President Oduro informed us that many of the computers in the lab are no longer usable and need to be replaced. This will also be something the NAB will look at. East West InterKnit has been able to provide funds for a color printer and a little toward computers but more is needed.

Dr. Oduro preached, taught, or otherwise participated in workshops and seminars in seventeen AIC churches during 2016. He also has many duties as head of the Ghanaian branch of the Organization of African Indigenous Churches (OAIC). During the seminary’s second semester he taught five courses including Biblical Hermeneutics, African Christian Theology, Critical Issues in African Ethics, Basic Christian Beliefs, and Contextual Theology.

Good News Currently employs a total of 19 staff. President Oduro has indicated that they need additional lecturers to teach at the seminary as well as at other centers that have been opened. They also need and would welcome short-term and long-term missionaries to join the staff to teach at the campus and the other centers.

We hear good reports about developments in the library. Many books have been catalogued and are in the library automation system provided by East West InterKnit. Though there are still many to enter, the Librarian reported that students can now begin using the computer to search for material. The library hours have been extended to better meet the needs of students whose schedules did not always allow them to come during open hours. East West InterKnit continues to fund the annual fees for the cataloging software and to ship donated books for their library including those that we purchase to benefit their African Christian Studies Program.

____________________________

* The new name of the seminary will be Good News Theological Seminary once the name registration process is competed.

 


Partnership at Work - In India

Bethel Mission, South Central India (KGF)

Forty women received gifts of cookware at the New Year Day gathering.In addition to the distribution of gifts to widows, children, pastors and other workers at various Christmas programs, forty very poor women were selected to receive gifts of cookware at the New Year Day gathering. Pastor Frank gave praise and thanks for allowing them to bless the women in this way, many of whom shed tears of gratitude as they, too, gave thanks to God for these utensils.

Bethel Mission conducts an annual 21 day early morning prayer campaign from the 1st to the 21st of February. Pastor Frank reported that between 800 and 950 attended each day, and 102 committed their lives to Christ, most of whom are from non-Christian background. He asked that we continue to pray for them.

Jehovah Shammah Children's Home & Ministries, Southeast India (JSCH)

Clothing given to members of Pastor's congregation during 2016 holidaysA JSCH pastor of a village church in southeast India is pictured here as he distributes gifts of clothing during the holiday season. Pray for the pastors and evangelists as they go from village to village sharing the gospel and planting churches.

Pray for the JSCH evangelists who are in the midst of conducting special meetings in the villages. Pray that many would respond to the gospel. Pray also for protection as both those who preach and those who respond face potential persecution.


Current Prayer Concerns

Ghana:

  • Pray for resources to adequately equip the computer lab as this impacts not only the students but accreditation.
  • Pray for a favorable response from the accreditation committee and for renewal of the seminary’s accreditation.Jennifer's training is nearing completion.
  • Pray for Jennifer, the administrative assistant, as she completes her degree this semester to become a fully qualified secretary [pictured here].
  • Pray for Lidia, a student who is expected to have hip surgery later this month. Dr. Oduro stated that his greatest joy (in 2016) was the publication of his book on Church of the Lord (Brotherhood), a large AIC. Praise God for this and for the publication of his book, Leading People to Christ.
  • Pray for Mary Gomashie, a former GN student and recent graduate of a seminary in Korea as she returns to Ghana and to Good News to begin duties as an instructor. Pray for more student intake. President Oduro has been busy recruiting new students but this is always a challenge as most need financial aid in order to attend.

Haiti:

  • Pray for Pastor Thony and his co-laborers as they continue to seek ways to meet both spiritual and physical needs of the Haitian people.
  • Pray that the MENH schools will continue not only to provide quality education but also to lead boys and girls to Jesus.
  • Praise God for those who have responded to the gospel message and pray that they will grow in faith.

India:

  • Pray for the many Indian Christian ministries that are facing hardship as a result of the government cancellation of their international bank accounts.
  • Pray for the ministry of Pastor Frank following the 21 day prayer campaign which involved hundreds who came early in the morning to pray for several hours. Pray that all will see God’s hand at work in their midst and in the surrounding communities.