From the Superintendent's DESK
The Western and Central Africa (WECA) camp meeting began this past Sunday, August 14, at the Faith City campground in Igbesa, Nigeria. I am scheduled to join the camp meeting on Thursday, August 25, for the last weekend of services. In the meantime, a report of the opening day and the preceding minister and worker meeting has been sent.
In preparation for the camp meeting, a minister and worker meeting was held the Friday before with over five thousand delegates attending. It was led by Isaac Adigun, the WECA District Superintendent, who started by welcoming everyone. After a song selection, Marcellin Kploka, the Republic of Benin Country Leader, gave an opening prayer. Then the meeting went forward in four sessions with the goal of reminding the participants of their binding duties as co-workers with God.
The first session focused on spiritual qualifications for workers, referencing 1 Timothy 3:1-10. The delegates were reminded that answering God’s call requires such virtues as strength of character, diligence, and a willingness to serve irrespective of challenges encountered. They were equally enjoined to be resilient and adapt during challenges, knowing that God’s callings come with His enabling.
The second session was on the unity of the Church and drew from Hebrews 10:22-25 as well as an excerpt from the Apostolic Faith Ministers Manual. Participants were reminded of their obligation to preach the pure Word of God, provoking one another to love and good works for the edification of the brethren. In addition, characteristics of the Apostolic Faith Church were emphasized, such as platform decorum and making use of the prayer room.
In the third session, general housekeeping business was discussed in preparation for the camp meeting activities. To begin, the various department heads were acknowledged and appreciation was expressed for their efforts. Then James Tifase, the Director of WECA Planning, gave an overview of the state of the camp facilities. Everyone was asked to do their part to promote health and safety.
In the concluding session, the ministers and workers were admonished to examine their lives and ask God for help in deficient areas. In addition, they were exhorted to maintain a personal revival in their own hearts while facilitating a group revival among fellow Christians. This session closed with the song “Revive Us Again” and prayer offered by Edet Bassey, a Nigeria Board Member. Then a fervent time of prayer followed the compelling call to take every challenge to the Lord in prayer as King Hezekiah did.
On Sunday, the camp meeting began in the prayer room with workers already on their knees many hours before the scheduled time. Then everyone gathered for Sunday school, which opened with the congregation singing “Now Thank We All Our God.” The elementary school children presented a program with the camp theme of “O Lord, Revive Thy Work.” Featuring a Scripture reading from Revelation 3:15-16 and a skit from the days of Elijah, it highlighted the dangers of being lukewarm. The listeners were encouraged to turn to God with all their hearts to receive His richest blessings during the camp meeting.
The assembly was dispersed to individual classes by age and language to study the lesson on “Hezekiah’s Sickness and Trial.” The English class was taught online by Johnson Okpo. It emphasized the power of God to do all things, the need to live holy, and the importance of humility and trust in God. Following the lesson, everyone gathered again for a review given by Brother Isaac.
The morning devotional service was attended by over sixteen thousand and started with heart-warming songs presented by the choir and orchestra, including “How Excellent.” The congregational singing included “Revive Thy Work, O Lord” and was followed by prayer given by John Bekoe, the Ghana Country Leader.
During the announcements, camp meeting greetings were read from across the globe including a message from Superintendent General Darrel Lee. Other greetings came from the leaders of Botswana, Denmark, France, Eastern Africa, Namibia, Southern Africa, the United Kingdom, Zambia, and more.
For the sermon, Brother Isaac took his text from Habakkuk 3:1-2 and focused on the camp theme of “O Lord, Revive Thy Work.” He reiterated the urgent need for individual and national revival. He also enumerated the elements of revival: humility, obedience, and prayerfulness. In conclusion, he declared this camp meeting dedicated to prayer and challenged everyone to pray until an answer is received, as Habakkuk did.
The evening evangelistic service began with a piano solo followed by the choir singing “Let the Fire Fall” and “Let Us Sing.” The testimonies were restricted to ministers, and most told of God’s goodness during the pandemic. Before the sermon, a touching solo of “It Is Jesus” was sung. Then Godwin Uzoho, the Anambra District Overseer, took the exhortation from Haggai 12:19. He spoke on God’s intention and desire to bless the people and turn them from their iniquities. At the close, the altar call was given, and the sanctuary filled with hungry souls pouring out their hearts before the Lord.
This was an excellent start to the camp meeting and the Lord is sure to bless throughout.