Click here to download the article in our newsletter as a pdf.
By Pastor Heavenlight Luoga (Deeper Life Ministries, Tanzania)
Heavenlight and Kesia Luoga are leaders in Deeper Life Ministries, a loose network of independent African churches. Based in rural north-west Tanzania, they are both well-respected Bible teachers. Recently, APF funding enabled Heavenlight and Kesia to hold a series of training seminars in the Democratic Republic of Congo where pastors from smaller denominations rarely receive any in-service training opportunities. Heavenlight wrote to update APF supporters on their progress:
Thank you for your prayers! Kesia and I had a wonderful and very successful trip to Goma, in eastern DR Congo. Kesia facilitated women seminars for two days and youth seminars for two days too. I spent much time in pastors’ seminars.
About 119 youth, 100 women, 20 pastors and six evangelists attended the seminars which were coordinated by local Baptists groups. I spent most of the time exploring what it means to be ‘in the time of harvest’ based on Matthew 9:35-38 and John 4:35. I asked, “What does Jesus mean when he says, ‘Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest?’”
My teachings focused on three areas:
Firstly, we saw that Jesus was a man of great humility and compassion. He went through all the towns and villages to preach, to teach, to heal and to comfort people. Christians should be willing to do likewise.
Secondly, the world is waiting to hear the good news of God’s Kingdom, but the workers are few. Therefore, whoever we might be, we all have a part to play in God’s renewal of the world.
Thirdly, we are told to ask God to send out workers into his harvest field. This is a call to pray for and to equip evangelists, church planters, chaplains and Bible teachers. We should always be listening and ready for when God asks us to respond with love. We are all called to be involved in his Kingdom.
After the seminars I was asked to go back to DR Congo in August to speak at a three-day training event immediately preceding the General Assembly meeting of the Community of Baptist Churches of Eastern Congo (CEBCE).
As my schedule was tight, my answer had to be “Thank you but no.” Then they asked me to speak at the 2020 event, even offering to cover our expenses for transport, visas and accommodation for both Kesia and myself. I said, “Yes!”
The CEBCE is a network of about 800 churches and is one of many Baptist groups in DR Congo. Over 500 pastors gather every year at the General Assembly so this is a very wonderful opportunity for us to share with many church leaders.
- For Heavenlight and Kesia and their influential and expanding teaching ministry.
- For other APF partners that receive an annual training budget such as Pastor Daniel Odour Gwara and Bishop Edward Amwayi in western Kenya
- That APF can increase the budget for African in-service training grants in 2020 and for the success of recently submitted funding bids to help cover the costs.
- That in-service training such as the conferences Heavenlight describes would have a deep and lasting impact on church leaders, churches and communities.
This is an article from our quarterly newsletter. Click here to download the whole document as a pdf.