From the Superintendent's DESK
Blessings continue to flow at the East Africa Camp Meeting as inspiring music, testimonies, and messages go forth, prompting many to pray.
The Tuesday morning teaching began with an organ prelude followed by a chorus of male voices singing “O Ye Be Reconciled to God.” Then a sister from South Africa presented a solo titled “Great Is Thy Faithfulness.” During the testimony service, one sister praised God for not only saving her, but healing her of asthma. A brother from Burundi said he received his three Christian experiences as a refugee in Namibia and now serves God in his own country.
Before the message, a group sang in Bemba “He Forgives and Forgets.” Then Isaac Adigun, the West and Central Africa (WECA) District Superintendent, gave the teaching on “Reconciliation,” taking his introductory text from Isaiah 1:18. He spoke on why reconciliation is necessary, how to achieve it, and the benefits of it. He said that reconciling to God through repentance is the first step and the ultimate benefit is Heaven. At the close, he invited everyone to reconcile all in their lives to God’s glory, and the altars filled.
Tuesday Evangelistic Service
The evening service began with an organ prelude followed by a violin solo. Then a vocal ensemble from Kabwe sang in Bemba and a group from Botswana sang in Setswana. Among the testimonies, one sister thanked God for settling a land dispute for her branch church in Kaputa. Another thanked God for healing her and making it possible for her to attend the camp meeting.
The choir sang “And Can It Be?” before Onias Gumbo, the Southern Africa District Superintendent, gave the message. Taking his text from John 14:14-15, he brought out that Jesus is the source of living water, which everyone needs to drink from. The response was positive, and many went to the altars afterward seeking God.
On Wednesday morning, a woodwind trio played “I Saw the Cross of Jesus.” This was followed by music specials featuring holiness. These included an ensemble singing “Holiness unto the Lord,” and the choir songs “A Clean Heart” and “Ndisalazya Ahisopo,” which is “Cleanse Me with Hyssop.” During the testimonies, one young man said he had been denied participation in the youth singing program because he was not saved. He was upset, but after hearing the teaching on reconciliation, he realized he was fighting God and decided to end the fight. He prayed through to salvation!
The last special was a male solo of “O Brother, Life’s Journey Beginning.” Then the theme of holiness continued with a message on “Holiness Exemplified” with an opening text from 1 Thessalonians 3:12 and 15. The teaching brought out that sanctification completes the work that justification began. At salvation, a person repents, and God forgives, no longer holding committed sins against that one. At sanctification, a person consecrates his life to God and He cleanses that one from the very nature of sin. This yields a life of holiness, which includes being hardworking, having integrity, not gossiping, and loving the things of God. As the invitation to pray went out, there was a good response at the altars.
Wednesday Youth Service
A youth service was held in the afternoon and among the specials was “Ulyowanakila Jesu” which translates from Bemba as “Whosoever Receiveth Jesus.” The testimonies included one from a sister who said she was saved through watching online youth services. A brother said the Gospel reached him through the Higher Way magazine and he received all three foundational Christian experiences. In addition, the Lord restored his marriage.
Before the sermon, the youth choir sang in Tonga “Undileleke Jesu,” which is “Bless Me, Jesus.” The sermon was given by Brave Chuuma. After reading his text from Luke 4:18 and 21, he asked “Whom do you want to go with?” Reminding the young people that this was the last youth service of the camp meeting, he urged them to take Jesus with them as they return to their homes. Many responded with prayer.
Africa Redistricting Announcement
The Wednesday evening service began with an organ prelude and then a trio singing in Swahili “Jesus and His Three Disciples. During the announcements, I conveyed that a decision had been made concerning the redistricting of the Africa work. Also, that earlier in the day, the Zambia Board and regional leaders had stood unanimously in a private meeting to affirm their support for the decision. I read a statement with the details, which is summarized in the following:
In discussions with Brother Isaac Adigun, District Superintendent of West and Central Africa, Brother Onias Gumbo, District Superintendent of Southern Africa, and Brother Boniface Banda, District Superintendent of East Africa, we have together concluded that each district will be more effectively served if we redraw some Apostolic Faith geographic boundaries in Africa. Rather than the three districts, it is agreed that all will benefit if we consolidate the Southern and East Africa districts into one district, with headquarters in Harare, Zimbabwe. Brother Gumbo will be the District Superintendent. Brother Banda will continue to lead the work in Zambia and work with other East Africa countries in coordination with Brother Gumbo.
Therefore, Zambia, Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Uganda will all be combined with the many Southern Africa countries to form this one Southern and Eastern region, with Brother Gumbo serving as District Superintendent. It corresponds to the West and Central region, where Brother Adigun serves as District Superintendent.
From a practical standpoint, Brother Banda’s role will not change except to gain reinforcement from Brother Gumbo and the Southern Africa district. This will be helpful both to him, and to all East Africa countries. We thank God for the unified approach of both Brother Gumbo and Brother Adigun, as well as Brother Banda. The three of them work very effectively together, along with other country leaders. God is a God of order. When we labor together within the framework of that order, blessings follow.
The congregation was given the opportunity to show their support for the district consolidation and they did so with a chorus of hearty “Amens.”
The service continued with John Musgrave preaching from John 21:1-6. He said the disciples had fished all night and caught nothing. Yet when they obeyed Jesus’ instructions and cast their net on the right side, they took in a multitude of fish. He brought out that a successful Christian walk comes through obedience to the Lord’s instructions. When the altar call was extended, many went to pray.
Brother John and I left the camp meeting Thursday morning, though it will continue through Sunday should the Lord tarry. We arrived a short time ago in Mozambique for the final weekend of that camp meeting, which is to include a church dedication. We expect to begin our return home on Monday.