Short Takes Fall 2022
A New Headquarters Possible for Tanzania
The saints in Eastern Africa have been longing to see the Apostolic Faith anchored in Tanzania. And now God has provided funds, through donations to the Portland headquarters, to purchase land in Tanzania for use as a headquarters and camp meeting site.
The work in Tanzania began in the early 1990s and has grown to include thirteen locations, primarily in the southern region. Recent special meetings held by teams from our Eastern Africa headquarters in Lusaka, Zambia, indicate the work is ready to expand further. However, the current Tanzanian headquarters church is not equipped to meet the challenge. The location, near the main business district in Nzovwe, Mbeya, is inconvenient. Also, the building is not large enough for a camp meeting congregation, and the land leaves no room to expand.
In 2019, discussions were held about how to raise funds for the purchase of a new headquarters location. The goal was a more accessible parcel of land which could accommodate a larger church, an office, and a mission house. Several ideas were found to be viable but all projects except for one were cancelled due to Covid. When it became clear that it would not be possible to buy land, the limited resources that did come in were diverted to renovating the existing headquarters church.
Many prayed about this situation, and earlier this year, God provided the means for purchasing land. Praises went up and workers began to look for a suitable property. Since then, it has been discovered that the Tanzania work must reregister with the government. The Eastern Africa saints continue to praise God while seeking His guidance on both counts.
God Remedies an Unstable Roof in India
The Pedapudi congregation in India is rejoicing in the construction of a new church, which they hope to dedicate by the end of October should the Lord tarry.
The new building is much needed as seventeen families have been added to the congregation since the spring of 2020. This has increased attendance from fifty to ninety, which is more than the old building can accommodate. For some time, services have been held with a portion of the congregation standing outside, watching through the windows.
Initially, it was thought that the lack of space could be remedied with an addition to the existing church. However, at the start of construction in January, it was discovered that the roof was cracked and unstable. There was a danger of it falling in, so services had to be halted. When it was clear that the roof could not be repaired, the saints began to pray for a solution. God answered by providing funds to build a new, larger church.
Construction began in April, and God supplied a good team of builders and workers, causing the work to go much faster than expected. When the front doorpost was put in place, the pastors and their wives gathered. They prayed that all who entered through it would feel the Spirit of the Lord and give their hearts to Jesus.
There is much interest in the building project among the families in the neighborhood. The congregation is seeing God’s hand at work and prays the new church will help add many more souls for His Kingdom.
A Headquarters for the Expanding Work in Burundi
Construction has begun on an Apostolic Faith headquarters church in Burundi. Its location is in a suburb of Bujumbura, which is Burundi’s largest city and main port. Land was purchased for this project in 2019 and our congregations in this country have looked forward to this event ever since.
Edouard Nimubona, the Country District Superintendent, sent a report of the construction progress. He said the building project has been divided into three phases. The first phase, which included preparing the ground and laying a foundation, was completed on April 2. The second phase of raising the walls, installing doors and windows, and adding a roof, began immediately and continues as funds become available. To date, a majority of the walls are up and a temporary roof has been placed over the main space to allow for services while construction is ongoing. The final phase of the project is expected to encompass plumbing and electrical work, flooring, and finishes. Once complete, the headquarters church will include a sanctuary, prayer room, children’s hall, and bathrooms.
There has been an increasing need for a headquarters church to lead the Burundi work as it has expanded. What began in 2017 as a single Apostolic Faith group led by Brother Edouard has grown to include ten locations. In 2018, a team from our East Africa headquarters in Zambia traveled among the groups for three weeks holding revival services. They reported that the response was good and several new converts were water baptized. Souls continue to be saved and added to the church. Two revival services held in 2021 had a combined attendance of over six hundred, and nine received salvation while three were sanctified.
The headquarters church is especially critical for the Bujumbura congregation. After the expiration of a three-year lease earlier this year, they have been left without a place of worship. Currently, they gather in their homes to encourage and pray for one another. However, their activities are limited as the government does not permit conducting in-home church services.
We pray this construction effort will be used for God’s glory to establish the Burundi saints in the faith and add souls to His Kingdom.