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Gospel Stands Up to Fierce Foes in Africa

Islamic extremist groups are a growing danger in Africa, but often the greater threat to Christians comes from Muslim relatives. In one country, a young mother who left Islam for Christ fears she and her two children will be left destitute if her husband discovers her faith.

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Prisoners in West Africa Find an Unexpected Freedom

Native missionaries in a country in West Africa did not know what to expect when they went to preach to inmates at a prison they had never visited, in a town unknown to them.

They had a plan for how to proclaim Christ in a way that would most resonate with the inmates, but some things you couldn’t plan for in the Muslim-majority country.

After a more than six-hour trip, they were stunned to be greeted by a social service officer who had witnessed their preaching in the prison closer to their ministry base.

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Zealous Muslims in Africa Find Paths to Christ

While conflicts between Muslims and Christians do break out from time to time, relations between the two groups in a north-central African country have historically been tolerant and cooperative.

So when a fervent Muslim who fanatically tried to convert Christians to Islam was offered an opportunity to translate the Bible, it seemed to him a task well suited to his education and abilities.

He welcomed the opportunity to mingle and discuss Scripture with prospective converts to Islam.

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Spiritual Warfare Waged Fiercely in Kenya

A native missionary who pastors a new church recently led an evangelistic outreach in an undisclosed village in Kenya where he met a man who appeared deeply troubled, forlorn and shunned.

He had a desperate air about him, but in time the missionary found he had charisma and an engaging laugh; why did villagers avoid him?

As they were talking one day, the man swallowed and decided to tell the pastor his secrets.

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The Forbidden Light of Christ Begins to Shine

In the countries of North Africa where only a scant few have heard the gospel, Muslims are taught that Christians worship three gods including the Virgin Mary, and they routinely hear that the Bible is riddled with major textual corruptions. While the Bible alone has been known to lead some people to faith in Christ, amid the region’s miasma of misinformation a personal connection is critical; one question leads to another, and nothing short of face-to-face answers will do. Following up with those who contact their website, native missionaries travel to different regions of the country – increasingly, with results forbidden by the surrounding society.

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When Demons Strike Terror into Souls

A Muslim woman was suffering from an illness that neither witchdoctors nor medical doctors could cure: She was convinced she was surrounded by snakes. Though nominally Muslim, Rachida was raised with voodoo belief in a prominent serpent spirit.

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Ritual Human Sacrifice Uncovered in Africa

Ben Adebayo was earning a good living cultivating human body parts from people he killed for witchdoctors who use them in potions or amulets, which in many parts of Nigeria are believed to make people invincible. “He used this to make so much money, and he became so deeply involved in killing that he destroyed more than seven girls,” a ministry leader said. With the same intent, Adebayo arranged to meet a young woman who, he was unaware, was a missionary with the locally based ministry.

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Kneeling Down Sick, Raised Up Healed

Caroline’s husband didn’t come home and beat her because he was drunk; he beat her because she was drunk. In a remote, undisclosed village in Uganda where few people could read, Bwambale Nakonde* believed that if he punished his wife enough times she might stop being an alcoholic.

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Muslim Witchdoctor Freed from Occult

Mamadou was a shaman in West Africa who made amulets and charms inscribed with verses of the Koran for people trying to ward off illness and evil forces. In the peculiar blend of Islam and tribal animism practiced in some parts of Burkina Faso, a shaman can make a decent living as a traditional “healer” providing trinkets and incantations attributed with power to keep malicious spirits and other beings at bay.

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September 29, 2022
At a Christian youth camp with distant views of snow-capped mountains in the Central Asian country of Kyrgyzstan, nearly 50 nervous children were having a hard time warming up to each other. At more than 5,200 feet above sea level, the camp center was warmer in July than during most of the year, but the kids ages 10 to 14 had arrived cold with gloom about how they were going to get through the week surrounded by strangers. “On the first day when the kids arrived, they were very closed and dissatisfied,” the leader of the native ministry said. “We began to worry a little about how we would do anything if they were so dissatisfied.”
September 22, 2022
Muslim extremists often appear in refugee camps, and word spreads that native missionaries bringing aid to the tents pray with refugees and leave Bibles for them. So workers were concerned when a grim-faced refugee camp leader summoned them to talk over tea. “Last week while distributing things to the children, you were praying, and you gave some people copies of the Bible,” he told them.
September 15, 2022
Kimbap was on her way home from work in Cambodia last summer when she saw a gang of teenage boys assaulting a younger boy. Though a lifelong Buddhist, Kimbap had been listening to a Christian radio program for several days, and when he screamed for help, she instinctively began praying to Christ. “I had very little belief that He was there for real to help this boy, because I am a Buddhist worshiper,” Kimbap said.
September 8, 2022
Burma’s internal military conflicts have curtailed ministry efforts, but the chaos also has helped expand God’s kingdom as displaced people take refuge at a Bible college and Christian camps. Among those fleeing to the jungles or to neighboring countries are young people, a native ministry leader said. “Many young people, however, remain in the country and do not know what to do with their lives,” he said. “Some young people run to Bible colleges and Christian camps.”
September 1, 2022
A ministry leader in North Africa arrived at the home of dying woman to say farewell, pray for her and, at her parents’ request, baptize her. Only after he arrived did he realize she had often attended his church, then mysteriously stopped. “She was aware that she had a few days left before she would die and had no hope for healing,” he said. “Although we didn’t know anything about the medical reports of her illness and what it was, I had a feeling that this could be an evil spirit.”
August 25, 2022
A young Iraqi girl’s grandfather died when a suspected Islamic State (ISIS) militant rammed the car carrying him. Sara later learned from a teacher at a native ministry’s school in Jordan that God loved her and her family, so she thought He must be different from the divine being her parents blamed for the loss of her grandfather. One day she was deeply missing her grandfather and crying at school, and the teacher noticed that she seemed frightened as well as sad.
August 18, 2022
A native ministry leader in Liberia and team members at times walk five to seven hours daily through jungles to bring the gospel to the lost. They must rely on God to protect them against wild beasts or hostile followers of tribal religion. “Idol worshippers sometimes threaten us, saying that if we don’t leave their village, they will kill us,” he said.
August 11, 2022
Seeking to reunite with his brother in London, a 16-year-old Bedouin shepherd boy from the Middle East was growing frustrated with questions local missionaries were posing to him. The boy started crying when they asked him to sign an application form for asylum. “He had never gone to school and didn’t know how to read or write,” one of the leaders of the ministry said. “He started crying when our interpreter explained to him what a signature meant.”
August 4, 2022
In a country in the Middle East, a young Muslim man recently passed by a local ministry’s church site and picked up a New Testament from the stack outside. “He took it home, secretly read from it and hid it, because he feared what his family might do to him,” the ministry leader said. The 22-year-old Muslim had no idea his older brother was also secretly exploring Christianity.
July 28, 2022
A young mother in Africa had gone to a series of traditional healers, each with their fetishes and incantations to tribal gods, in a desperate quest to heal her son. He was 3 years old and had never been able to walk. She heard about a meeting at a nearby community where villagers studied the Bible. In her sub-Saharan country unidentified due to local opposition to the gospel, both the healing and the deaths of children recently moved parents to seek Christ.
July 21, 2022
Heba was rescued before she could end her life, condemning the 32-year-old mother in northern Africa to continue in a misery whose sources she did not fully understand. An affair with a younger man blunted the pain at times but soon compounded it, further toxifying problems with her husband. “I was living a miserable life filled with sadness, failure and problems,” she said.
July 14, 2022
An 11-year-old boy in Mexico had trouble socializing, and his father was addicted to drugs, so local missionaries seeking to help him had persuaded his mother to let him live at their educational center living quarters. Workers noticed some alarming drawings in his notebook. The sketches made it clear the boy was suicidal.
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