Ethiopia - October/November 2017
My first order of responsibility was to teach at the International Bible College in Addis Ababa under the presidency of Girma Metaferia. My subject was the Kingdom of God, a 3 credit course, with extra assignments and class work. My book, The Most Important Thing - The Kingdom of God, was used as the text.
On Sunday, October 29, I spent the morning and noon with FGC of Ethiopia Vice President Worku Girma, and with his church in Addis.
On Monday morning, October 30, I drove 4 hours to Gojo to join the Petros Network team of about 30. Jim Rogers, Dave Hartman, and Allan Skidmore had already arrived on Saturday night so they could be present at the dedication of the new Tesfa (Hope) Center for which a businessman of Northside Church provided the finances. (About $400,000.)
From Monday through Thursday there was a scurry of activity among the 30 N American and Ethiopian Leaders. My assignment was to be a part of the training team for the last quarter of the 1000 indigenous Church Planters’ initial Bible education. Petros provides 4 weeks of training over the Fall and Spring seasons of two years. Plans are proceeding for 24 units of Bible College Courses to follow for selected candidates. Courses are now being translated into 4 languages and made available either in paper or e-book for the students.
In addition to our work, there were intense interviews to update the progress of each church planter. Our Medical team dealt with hundreds of patients who had no other access to medical care. We had a team of women from N America and Ethiopia who trained a 100+ women in leadership from the Community. Gojo is shaping up to possibly become the capital of its region. Much attention was given by our team to helping widows gain education and independence, usually including business training. Also a day was spent with underprivileged children, mostly orphans - a day that they will never forget. While in Gojo the team took time to visit a couple of the 1000 churches we have planted in the region.
On Thursday evening I returned to Addis to continue teaching at IBC. On Sunday, November 5 I spoke at the church of President Abraham Ferede. After the first service and before Bible College, I attended the Church of PAOC Missionary Brian Rutten.
Back in Addis, we took time to visit Hope for Korah in the poorest part of the city. Eve Pohl from Abbotsford BC, sponsors a Mercy ministry to orphans, widows, lepers and the poorest of the poor.
On Monday November 6, our Canadian team flew to Dire Dawa to continue our work with Petros Network. There were over 200 enthusiastic indigenous Church Planters from 16 denominations who are now planting churches in 90% Muslim villages in the Dire Dawa Region.
Northside Church has sponsored 50 of these new church plants by indigenous missionaries in unreached villages this year. I was part of the Pastoral training team teaching the pastors over the 4 days. As in Gojo, each was interviewed individually and their progress updated. The Medical team worked with a clinic which has been sponsored over these past four years by a church in NA. There is no hospital in Dire Dawa, the second largest city in Ethiopia.
I returned to Canada on Thursday to Friday November 9 and 10. Thank you for your prayers and interest in the revival of Ethiopia.