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All articles in category Western Africa

Missionary Spotlight-Visit to Mali
September 2004
Mali

Missionary Spotlight-Visit to Mali

  Monday 19 January   Arrived at Bamako at 06.45. It was warm and breezy. In the terminal it was chaos, but we were rescued by the only English speaker, an American. We had a long wait for a bus to Mopti. It was old and the air got ever hotter as we sat choking with fumes from a running engine while drivers argued about money. At last we set out — at 09.55. Welcome to Africa! The uncomfortable ride was compensated by views of goats, dust, old cars, mopeds, motor cycles, and ladies with large loads on their heads. We were fascinated by ovens...

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Missionary Spotlight – Northern Mali’s young church
September 2004
Mali

Missionary Spotlight – Northern Mali’s young church

The church in northern Mali consists of first generation Christians who need grounding in new attitudes to sin and morality. For example, in Islam stealing is no great sin provided nobody catches you! In Christ, people discover genuine honesty. Many Christians are under pressure from family and friends to return to Islam. Being part of the family group is important, so a new Christian usually finds himself rejected. He is refused food and lodging, and may be ostracised. He is treated like a dog. Most believers in Mali are young men still dependent on their families. But what if their biological family wants nothing to...

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Missionary Spotlight – Even the water is dry
September 2004
Mali

Missionary Spotlight – Even the water is dry

  Mali — a former French colony not yet reached by the twenty-first century — is four times the size of the UK, with a population of 12 million. Two-thirds of it is Sahara desert. However, it has an intriguing and glorious past — embracing the ancient Malian and Songhay empires as well as Timbuktu and the Tuaregs.   Today, southern Mali and capital city Bamako have Christian churches of many kinds, which coexist with animism and Islam (mixed with animism). Northern Mali had to wait more than 1,900 years for the gospel. The Christian and Missionary Alliance (CMA) started work in 1923, but found...

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Storm over the Ivory Coast
April 2003
Ivory Coast

Storm over the Ivory Coast

Who would have thought it? The September uprising in the Ivory Coast took many by surprise. The Ivory Coast has for a long time been something of a role model in terms of its stability and development. Even in Africa, where political stability is not necessarily regarded as a virtue, the country was heading in the right direction. Yet now it faces months, maybe years, of conflict and unrest. Everyone knew there was unrest following the disappearance of the former president, FĂ©lix Houphouet-Boigny in 1993. Politicians found it very difficult to fill the shoes of the ‘Old Man’. But recently, especially after the election of...

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Missionary Spotlight – Nigeria revisited
October 2002
Nigeria

Missionary Spotlight – Nigeria revisited

Nigeria is a country of contrasts. It is vibrant with life and activity, and yet shows enormous differences in lifestyle.   In the cities begging and corruption exist alongside splendid buildings (usually mosques). Many are being reached, but there are still whole tribes who have not heard the gospel of Christ. People flock to the churches, but there is much superficial ceremony and a great need for sound Bible teaching. Visits   Three of us from the UK landed in Abuja on 28 June and stayed with a Christian family over the weekend. We preached at churches in Abuja and conducted Creation meetings. On the...

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Missionary Spotlight : Nigeria: a satanic attack
October 2002
Nigeria

Missionary Spotlight : Nigeria: a satanic attack

The gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ recently stirred up an attack from the kingdom of darkness in Port Harcourt, Nigeria.   A ‘mystic’ woman, a Prophetess of the ‘Cherubim and Seraphim Eternal Sacred Order’, lives in front of our church (Christ’s Reformed Church), with a fence between us as the boundary. Her ‘church’ burns candles and incense to angels, and its adherents wear white clothes and walk about in bare feet. Livelihood   Before we started our church, many people consulted this woman for the purpose of divination, and to obtain magic potions to promote their business, marriage, health, fertility etc. Initially, the woman...

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Missionary Spotlight-Benin
June 2002
Benin

Missionary Spotlight-Benin

Europresse (the French branch of Evangelical Press) held its annual preachers’ course conference in Benin, West Africa, in February 2002. Students from both Benin and Togo attended. Pastor Robert Strivens from England and I were welcomed at the airport by Eric and Paulin, leaders of the Grace Church in Cotonou, Benin. Our hotel was quite run-down. Still, we were in Africa, and the smiling faces of the brethren made up for the lack of comfort! Conference A brother from Cotonou put his car at our disposal and we travelled about 100 miles north to Bohicon, where the conference was held in the compound of the...

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Missionary Spotlight – Nigerian churches today
October 2001
Nigeria

Missionary Spotlight – Nigerian churches today

A century ago our nation was in deep darkness. Superstition ruled and Satan was worshipped. Sacrifices were offered to deities in rivers, trees and rocks. The creature was worshipped rather than the Creator.   The earliest attempts by missionaries to penetrate Nigeria soon resulted in two missionary societies withdrawing from the area, after the death of 11 and 71 missionaries respectively mainly due to mosquito-borne disease. The West African Coast had become ‘the white man’s grave’. However, Nigeria was conquered at last largely through the work of black Jamaican missionaries, and the gospel spread like wildfire. The Acts of the Apostles repeated itself among our...

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