On the first of November a team of four missionaries and four children serving on the field were evacuated by Missionary Aviation Fellowship aircraft from the field. The security situation had been tense since September. The team went through debriefing and counselling sessions before going back to their homes temporarily. They’re grateful to be able to sleep through the night without fear of being attacked, until they return in 2019.
The extremists had threatened to disrupt the national examinations of two of our schools, claiming that education is against their religion. The field drastically changed with this heightened security threats. At night gunshots were very frequent. On October 22, around midnight there was a lot shooting. There were people who crossed into the country from Somalia and were set to stage an attack. The gunshots were so loud they made their houses shake. By God’s grace J’s* three children did not wake up from the gunshots. We are grateful, as their daughter was about to take a national exam and was successful, even in the midst of the threats. Their two sons are also attending schools locally and doing well. One will join fifth grade and the other will be in second grade this upcoming year. Earlier in the year the couple attended the Risk Assessment and Management workshop and it was wonderful for them. It gave them tools to assess risk as well help them cope with increasing stress due to insecurity. The training has enabled J* to lead his team through risk.
This is an example of his leadership, despite being regularly under threat by the extremists:
J* was selected to be a board member in the secondary school for management, which is also the disciplinary committee. There were three students who had been causing disruption in the school. At one point they came to J* requesting counsel, as they had been acting rude to their teachers and parents and wanted help correcting their behavior. The students said they thought they have been attacked by demons. J* took time to counsel them in how they should behave. He shared with them a lesson on why they need to obey God first and obey people. For the last three months he has monitoring them and he testifies that they have changed completely. J* was able to help these students be impacted for good by God’s word and praying with them. E*, J’s* wife has also has opportunity to encourage the girls in the area on good behavior and education. The couple also took time to train the Christians that attend the only church in the area, on the need to reach out to the neighbors. They have actively shared the vision to reach out to the local community. In last three months, even in the midst of threats J* managed to share the Gospel with at least fifty people.
Their prayer points are:
- Thank God for allowing the couple’s daughter with 307 marks out of 500. Pray that she joins a good secondary school.
- Pray that school fees for the couple’s daughter can be paid as she joins Form One, they are usually expensive.
- Full recovery for J’s* left arm injured from a motor bike accident.
- Guidance as they make decisions on way forward in ministry in the midst of insecurity
- That normalcy will resume in the field
- That the church/fellowship in the field will continue.
*names have been removed for security purposes