Subscribe now

Article

More in this category:

Missionary Spotlight

September 1999 | by Keith Underhill

Nairobi, Kenya
see image info

This church was begun in an eastern suburb of Nairobi in 1978. At present, it has two pastors and forty-three resident and ten non-resident members. One of the pastors is a Kenyan and the other an English missionary.

There are few people in Nairobi who sincerely desire to know the Word of God and, to many, non-charismatic worship appears boring. So the growth of the church has been slow. Many people, Christians included, are not committed to town life, and have relatives back in the rural areas where they were born. They plan to retire and be buried back home, and are constantly returning into the country for functions, especially funerals. This too has meant that church development has been a slow process.

Hub of the nation

Nevertheless, because Nairobi is at the hub of the nation, Trinity Baptist Church has been able to develop contacts down the years with different people outside Nairobi. Through these contacts, avenues have opened up to plant churches that teach the doctrines of grace in other parts of Kenya. Thus, seven further duly-constituted churches have been started, with eleven pastors in the various congregations. There are also now at least ten more congregations in different stages of development.

A three-year theological training programme was started in the 1980s to train men to minister in these churches, and there are presently eighteen students. Fifteen more students are eager to join in the year 2000 if we accept them. In the last few years a missionary has been fully occupied in teaching these students. Thirteen hundred copies of a bi-monthly magazine teaching the Scriptures, called Grace and Truth, are sent all over Kenya.

Opportunities

Recently, contacts have been made with two further communities that are strangers to the gospel. Somalis are solidly Muslim, but three refugees from that group have professed faith in Christ and are now members of Trinity Church. Secondly, a few Rendille people, originally from north Kenya, are beginning to listen to the gospel for the first time, even though by background they are steeped in traditional African religion. These people live in a slum area of Nairobi, their men-folk working as watchmen. Such openings demonstrate that opportunities abound on every hand to make Christ known. There is a need for more missionaries, whether from Kenya or from outside, to labour in this part of God’s harvest-field.