Good results from first FFBI Session
We were looking forward to our second session of Frontier Force Bible Institute for many reasons. We were excited about the material we would be presenting and were praying that our Ugandan leadership would be as excited as we were. We brought a team from Vintage Grace church in El Dorado Hills with us and would be introducing them to the work that God is doing in rural Uganda. We always love greeting the believers from our 9 churches that we have come to know and love over the years. And we were curious about follow up from our first session from May.
Our May session was on Biblical Foundations for Assessing and Growing Healthy Churches. We studied how to assess our churches and how to build health and stability into our ministries. We began our current sessions with a time for each of the church leadership teams to report on how they were able to apply the teaching from the previous session. We were overwhelmed with the excitement and good reports of what happened over the summer. Pastor Sam reported that he was able to bring more balance to his preaching based on what we learned. Robert and William from Nyenda Island shared about how they learned that Jesus was the head and owner of the church and not the pastors. God blessed them with 2 new converts right away and the church members have been more consistent in sharing responsibility. The Kanalaki church bean to focus on “Waggulu, Munda and Ebwero, the upward, inward and outward callings of the church instead of the difficulties they are facing. They reported that this new attitude has led to attendance nearly doubling. Each of the churches reported similar results and they were excited about this new session of Frontier Force Bible Institute.
We are very encouraged by the initial response to Frontier Force Bible Institute and look forward to seeing how God will continue to grow healthy churches here in the rural villages of Uganda.
Tuesday afternoon was a great celebration as 22 believers from Madudu House of Prayer entered the waters below Ssezibwa falls to be baptized. Here is a video of Cyprian and Margaret’s children Promise and Paul being baptized.
There is a shrine in Kampala, the capitol city of Uganda that was built to commemorate 22 young Ugandan catholic martyrs who were killed by sword or fire for their faith in 1885. On June 3 of each year there is a pilgrimage to Uganda that draws over 1.5 million people to visit the shrine and commemorate their sacrifice. There is a small lake at the site where the executioners were said to have washed off the blood of the martyrs and pilgrims dip themselves in the lake seeking blessing. Many of these pilgrims walk for days and even weeks with nothing but their clothes and a few provisions, stopping to stay the night at different catholic churches along the way. During our last visit to Uganda in May we witnessed hundreds of people walking to the Namugongo shrine to participate in the memorial.
As we observed these weary travelers, Cyprian commented that Romans 10:2 describes their condition:
“For I bear witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge”.
This is a great reminder of why God has called us to go to Uganda to come alongside our Ugandan leadership team to establish Frontier Force Bible Institute. Peter reminds us that:
“His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence,” 2 Peter 1:3
Our FFBI course this month will be “Jesus’ Developmental Plan for Healthy Disciples & Leaders. We will spend the week of September 12-16 studying the way Jesus recruited, trained, observed and released his disciples. Each of our 9 rural churches will send their pastors and key leaders to apply this teaching to their own ministries. We are excited about this material as it clearly communicates the principles of discipleship that Jesus modeled for us to use today.
We are delighted to have Carleen Elledge, Scott Friesen and Karen Swanson join us from Vintage Grace Church in El Dorado Hills California. Vintage Grace shares a common passion for church planting and dynamic discipleship with our rural ministries and we look forward to connecting El Dorado Hills with Uganda. We will depart for Uganda on September 7 arriving late in the evening on September 8. Our VG team will return on Sept 20 and Kathy and I will return on Sept 29.
Please Pray with us
Safe travels to Uganda.
Frontier Force Bible Institute.
Attend Wedding or one of our young leaders.
Visit South of the Equator ministries in Rakai District.
Minister in rural churches
We have been missionaries with New Missions Systems International for nearly 8 months and are so thankful that God brought us here. NMSI exists to “Proclaim Christ and make disciples globally” through 5 strategic focus areas. We invite you to read this report and see how our ministry in Uganda works toward accomplishing these strategic focus areas.
Church Multipication. Helping to establish vibrant, caring Jesus-following communities that consistently replicate themselves is also a focus of Frontier Force Christian Ministries. The Wabinyira House of Prayer was the first FFCM church planted in 1999 and has been a catalyst in the establishment of many more churches in rural Uganda. In 2015 Kinyoni village in the Masaka district of Uganda was the site of FFCM’s most recent church plant. This brings the total of FFCM church plants to 9.
Community Transformation. We also seek to help communities solve important local issues like health, clean water, sanitation, and education. FFCM currently runs a primary school in Madudu village with plans to expand underway and a dental/medical clinic near Zirobwe in Luwero district is being developed.
We are partnering with international organizations to provide low cost, sustainable bio-sand water filtration systems at the household level. We are working with Local individuals and business to provide these filters to homes in the villages where FFCM churches are active. In May we delivered a Tiva Water filter to help purify water from this source in Rakai district
Global Youth Ministry. Uganda has a median age of just 15.5 years old making it the second youngest country in the world. Over half the population are teenagers or younger! A ministry of NMSI called YouthHOPE is committed to transforming the lives of global youth and equipping the church to meet their holistic needs. YouthHope has developed excellent training materials and programs that have been used in other parts of Africa. We are looking into the possibilities of bringing this training to Uganda.
Marketplace Ministries. In addition to being one of the youngest countries in the world, it is also among the lowest in per capita income. Providing job opportunities is a strategic focus of both NMSI and FFCM. Over the years FFCM has helped with startup funds and training in agriculture and small business. FFCM is helping churches to develop income by planting trees on their church land. A eucalyptus seedling that costs about 10 cents will grow to a tree that can be sold for 10 dollars in about 5 years’ time. A pine tree seedling can be even more profitable over 10 years.
Trinity Bridal is a new business that collects used wedding gowns and makes them available for rental in Uganda. Trinity Bridal has a store in Kampala and we are developing a new location in Mukono.
Short Term Mobilization. God is doing great things all over the world, and Short Term mobilization as all about providing opportunities for people to experience what God is doing. We love bringing people to Uganda to introduce them to the love and dedication of the church that God is building in rural Uganda. The picture below is a team from Hessel Church in January 2016. In September we will be bringing a team from Vintage Grace church in El Dorado Hills California to see first-hand the ministry of Frontier Force Christian ministries.
Thank you for your prayers and support of God’s work in Uganda. We would love to get together with you and tell you more transformational stories from Africa.
If you would like to learn how to invest in our work in Uganda
please visit our ministry page
We travelled to Mbale to visit Pastor Mike Mataya and to be part of a month long outreach into the predominantly Muslim communities in the shadow of Mt. Elgon in Eastern Uganda. What a joy to participate in the baptism of nearly 40 new believers, many coming to Christ from Islam.
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The floor of the church at Madudu village is covered by large mats made from Papyrus reeds that grow locally. Peter, the caretaker of the church was rolling out the mats in preparation for our week of training when out slithered a snake. It quickly retreated to another set of mats and hasn’t been seen since. Snakes are not well regarded in Ugandan villages and are often seen as a bad omen.
As we began teaching on Monday morning, Pastor William was absent as he found himself in prison for having a stolen cow in his herd, Pastor Sam was absent as his replacement at work hadn’t arrived and Pastor Alex was absent as he had to take care of some emergency financial arrangements that couldn’t wait another day. The delegation from Kanalaki village in Rakkai arrived to report that recent storms had knocked down their church building.
The book of James opens with “Count it all joy when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces endurance”
We have had a very profitable time of teaching and discussion with our leadership teams from 9 villages as we conduct the course entitled “Biblical Foundations for Assessing and Growing Healthy Churches” We teach all day long, and the delegates are given homework assignments to work through each evening. The next morning we review the assignments and continue with the curriculum for the day. The key idea for practical application of our teaching is to consider each section and ask 3 questions. 1. What are we doing well in this area. 2. What are we not doing well. 3. What can we do to improve.
At the end of the week each church will have an assessment and strategic planning tool that will help them to focus on what will bring health and stability to their ministries. It has been very encouraging to see the open and honest interaction among the leaders and the genuine desire to see churches that are transforming their communities.
We began our conference on Monday with prayer for the challenges that we had already faced and by Tuesday, William had been released from prison as the real cow thief had been caught, Sam’s replacement arrived and was accepted by Sam’s employer. Alex’s financial affairs were in order and the Kanalaki church was already planning to build a brick structure instead of the traditional stick and mud.
The snake? Still no sign of him.
We visited the church at Bugero on Sunday and came across this curious “thing” Do you know what it is? One of things I love about the Ugandan believers is their amazing creativity.
Click on the photo to see what it is
Powerful and Influential Prayer
We arrived at Entebbe airport in the wee hours of the morning Wednesday May 10 and travelled Entebbe Road to Cyprian and Margaret’s home just before the excitement began. Thursday was the day that the re-elected president would be sworn in to office. There were heads of state from 7 African countries as well as officials from Europe and America coming through Entebbe to attend the ceremonies. It was a great opportunity for protests and demonstrations and we heard reports of road closures, Police action and tear gas.
Cyprian is a leader of a group of pastors who have set up weekly prayer alters to pray for political leaders and for Christians in places of authority to have an impact in Ugandan society. The President has taken note of their activities and is appreciative of their efforts. Cyprian is among a group of Christian leaders who were invited to a state dinner on the eve of the inauguration and their leader was asked to offer a prayer for the dinner and the events of the week.
This dinner was an exclusive event reserved for only the most important people, yet through faithful and consistent prayer, Cyprian and 4 other evangelical pastors found themselves counted among the powerful and influential. Dr.Joshua Lwere, director of the National Fellowship of Born Again Pastors was given the opportunity to have an audience with the president a while ago and his approach was quite different than other religious leaders who had the same opportunity. Other leaders always showed up with a long list of what they needed from the government, but Joshua came asking “How can we be of service to our government”? We want to know how to pray for you. As ambassadors of the Kingdom of God these Ugandan pastors understand which Kingdom is greater.
What a great honor for Cyprian and a small group of faithful pastors to be recognized as Ambassadors of the High King of Glory.
Our time in Uganda has been spent preparing for the launch of Frontier Force Bible Institute on Monday the 16th. We also visited the Bulubakulu church and taught from the word. We purchased and delivered 1,500 eucalyptus seedlings to Zorobwe to be planted on the clinic property. These seedlings will grow quickly and within a few years return 10 fold on the original investment. We also met with the owner of a new building on the main road from Kampala to Kenya where we hope to open a new Bridal Boutique.
We will be teaching at the Bugero House of Prayer on Sunday and the next morning begin a very full week of teaching from the Word on establishing and maintaining healthy churches.
Thank you for your prayers, friendship and support.
Serving with Jesus Joy
Andy and Kathy
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