|"GRACEVINE" Newsletter - November 2003|
November - our second to last newsletter for 2003 - and we praise God who is the source of all the blessings we have enjoyed these past months! "Thank you Lord for Your lavish generosity towards the Anglo Africa region"
A thanksgiving word from our Madagascar leaders, Dries & Valerie du Plessis (part of an email received in September):
"Exciting things are happening from all sides, and sometimes we cannot grasp it all - so that is why the Lord does not give it to us all at one time - we cannot handle it! We must say that our lives have changed since EHC! You folk are a great blessing to us and it is wonderful to have you as friends and co-workers"
I have recently returned from a trip to our Food Security Project in northern Malawi. This project was (and still is) sponsored by EHC Australia and the Australian Government over the past year where 1,500 farmers were involved and supplied with all inputs (seed, fertilizer, equipment and training). Key agricultural personnel were appointed to train and equip these farmers to ensure that this Food Security Project be as successful as possible, and we praise God for what has been accomplished this past year and the impact it has made on the nation. During a visit earlier this year along with our Australian sponsors, they were so impressed with what they saw and personally experienced, that they felt led to continue their support for the next three years! It was with such joy in my heart (and that of our Regional Team) that I was able to share this incredible news with our Food Security Project team! I had a meeting with 1,000 of the 1,500 farmers and was able to supply them with seed and fertilizer - to see the expressions on their faces and all those big smiles will be a memory that will remain with me always! They were rejoicing in the Lord as they saw 'tons' of seed and fertilizer being off-loaded from the trucks. The Malawi Government was also involved and we pray for our Malawi team, under the leadership of Simon Msowoya, that God will use them mightily in training and equipping these farmers and that they will have the most fruitful crops.
We pray a prayer of 'blessing' over our sponsors of this project and all those who are involved. Our desire is to be able to begin projects of this nature in the other nations we are working in as we have seen over this past year the amazing 'door opener' this project has been for the Gospel and the increased statistical reports (a ten-fold and more increase) from Malawi is proof of God's favor on our evangelism and humanitarian thrust in this nation!
Reflections of our September 2003 East Africa trip
I am included a few further edited testimonies from the US team who joined us in East Africa during September. What we are sharing below further testifies to the goodness of God in our Region and this scripture immediately comes to mind.
"O taste and see that the Lord is good"!
Ricky Keel (Mexico) begins his email to the Anglo Africa Regional Office as "Buenas tardes" which means "good afternoon" in Spanish! He says further: One thing I saw in you was great favor with God's work. I personally thank you for the level of comfort that was provided on this trip. I am a great outdoorsman and I was expecting it to be much, much rougher. I so enjoyed the day we got to go hut-to-hut giving the Gospel. God blessed us for every house we entered, everyone in the household accepted Jesus as Saviour! The Heart of Man chart and Gospel bracelets are both powerful tools for God's work. I could have stayed with the people from the Masai tribe the whole two weeks I was there. I see such a door opening for God's work in these people; they are so sincere.
Pastor James Smith (New York)
The mission trip to Tanzania and Kenya in Sept. 2003 was an answer to prayer and a dream come true. God, who does exceeding abundantly, did way more than I could have imagined during these conferences. To see men and women of vision, who have already impacted Africa, now join together means that many new doors of opportunity will be opened to reach people who are lost and waiting for the Gospel. It was an honor to be in their midst, and more of an honor to minister in these meetings. One day we will look back on these meetings as a time that something new began to happen. But, it is only the beginning, the rest of the story we will hear about for years to come.
Testimony - Heart of Man chart's effectives in Madagascar:
About 7 years ago our leaders in Madagascar visited a man whose name is Ben'Dalana (from the Sakalava tribe). He was not interested in the Gospel and said it was not for the Sakalava tribe. He hardened his heart and life went on. After his wife lost two children during pregnancy and the third child was born retarded, they decided to move to another village. This man was a spirit medium and usually went into a trance to communicate with his 'ancestors' and demonic spirits. Four years ago, after many hardships, he saw a presentation of the Heart of Man chart by his pastor at one of our village churches and the condition of his heart was explained to him. He received Jesus as His Lord and Saviour and has since grown and matured in the Lord and is now the leader of his own church in his village. His wife has been trained to do literacy courses and at the moment she is teaching their own village people to read and write. This couple have a heart for God and are prepared to leave their village and go out from village to village on the coast with the sailing boat to bring the Gospel to those that have never heard the Good News.
Please pray for Dries and Valerie du Plessis, our focus leaders in the Mahajanga Province in Madagascar. They have during October received 200,000 Gospel tracts and 1000 Discipleship Booklets from the Anglo Africa Regional Office, to equip them and their capable teams to 'get the job done'! Thank you to Pastor Ferdie Warwick (one of our partners) who gave us permission to photocopy the Malagasy copy of his discipleship booklet.
Birthday Greetings to:
November 12 - Albert Muleya (Zambia Focus Leader). Thank you Albert - you are appreciated and we 'rejoice in the Lord' that you are part of our EHC team in your nation. Your input is most valuable!
We have received a consignment of YAO Gospel Booklets from WMP. We extend our sincere thanks to Jay and Vicky Benson, along with their team, for this wonderful gift. This will indeed enhance our evangelism activities in Malawi 'beyond description'! We give God the praise for our partnership with WMP and for their continued partnership in reaching Africa with their Scripture booklets and tracts. Nicky (from our regional office) and her husband Jerry, drove down to Durban to collect this consignment and as they saw box after box coming out of the storage area for them to load onto our EHC vehicle and trailer, they just stopped for a few minutes and thanked the Lord for the thousands of YAO speaking people in Malawi who would soon be hearing and reading about the Good News (maybe for the very first time) - Thank you Jay and Vicky!
Pieces of Gospel literature distributed 76,861
Number of homes reached 66,657
People reached with a clear Gospel presentation 333,285
Salvations (responses to the Gospel) 42,124
Number of Christ Groups formed 282
Volunteer workers (Pioneer Missionaries) 6,180
Michael French (our National Leader in Sierra Leone) submitted an excellent Quarterly Publications Report for the 3rd quarter of this year. In spite of the most difficult conditions, lack of reliable transport and various other limited means, Michael and his team continue in their efforts to reach every home in their nation. Michael says "Mission Impossible made Possible" as EHC Sierra Leone continue to labor for Him through 'thick and thin' in a nation that has been plagued with a number of 'woes' for a long time.
Thank you Michael, for "running the race" to win the prize of His high calling!
SPECIAL PRAYER REQUEST
Passion is that zeal, fire, excitement and intensity that one feels on the inside towards things that are important to them. Passion stirs us to action and causes us to "do something". Each of us has a passion and destiny to fulfil in our nation. May the Lord continue to 'bless you indeed" as you continue on your journey to reach every home with the Gospel and partner with our ministry and His Holy Spirit empower you for the 'upcoming' leg of your spiritual journey to see Africa saved!
Hennie Hanekom and the Regional Office team