“How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!”…“Their voice has gone out to all the earth, and their words to the ends of the world.” Romans 10:15, 18
We continue to receive more invitations from people who want to preach that Good News! This time it was from Dr. Gideon Umukoro in the west African country of Nigeria. Nigeria has been in world news since Boko Haram abducted 279 girls from a school nine years ago. Attacks continue from these militant groups, but the gospel is their hope.
Gideon became a Christian in 1983 when the Lord saved him from a gang background. He served as a pastor for 13 years and in 1998 he began developing resources to train rural leaders. That pursuit led to start the Servant Leadership Institute, a Bible College in Nigeria. The school closed last June because of many aspects of instability. The need to train rural leaders led him to consider media ministry and oral training as tools to meet the need for continued training of rural leaders. His desire is to train two to three leaders from each of Nigeria’s five districts so they can bring the training back to their areas and if one dies, the training will continue.
Last week there was a mass burial of 64 people who had been killed by terrorists. It took place 30 minutes from his home, but Gideon knows that the same God who converted him from a gang lifestyle can change those who are attacking Christians and the churches through out Nigeria and he is committed to spreading the hope of Jesus throughout West Africa. Join us in prayer for Gideon, Nigeria as a country, and the persecution of our brothers and sisters in Christ. Pray also for the Orality Institute as we develop training videos and begin to expand this ministry over the internet.
And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come. Matthew 24:14
Jesus made that promise to His disciples and today we are seeing it fulfilled at an incredible speed. Leaders in seven countries invited the Orality Institute to participate in the proclamation of the gospel in their area since December. Dr. Gideon Umukoro from Nigeria is most recent.
To respond to these amazing opportunities, we need more trainers, and we need to increase our support.
This past year, six leaders from Uganda led the training that IOI hosted in Malawi and Ethiopia. This year, those leaders will be given responsibility to continue that oversight as well as adding South Sudan to their duties. South Sudan is the country directly north of Uganda so they are able to reach there by bus and stay in a rented home.
Friends of those in Malawi have requested oral training for their people in Zambia, so our leaders in Malawi will need to be the ones who travel across the western boarder and train their friends. We will try to raise the money to enable that training.
We will need to create new training videos so that the leaders like Gideon will be able to train their own people in Nigeria, India, and Pakistan. Over these past 3-4 years our ability to communicate over the internet has increased dramatically. Now video conference platforms are available on smart phones, and we can use them to communicate with clarity in remote areas. The role of the International Orality Institute is quickly becoming one of coordination, communication, and supporting the work our international partners are doing in their own countries. That is the way that the gospel will be proclaimed throughout the whole world. Oh Lord, may we be faithful to your call!