We would like to THANK Activated Ministries for again generously sponsoring Activated material for the mission work in Malawi
This is the report of our trip to Malawi in July 2012 of the distribution of the 20 sets of Activated Books which were so kindly sponsored by Activated Ministries.
Since the beginning of the year the number of Activated Youth Clubs has grown from 6 to 14. It was very inspiring to get to know many of the members and visit the different cities and outlying areas where they are located in. Most of the clubs are in Lilongwe, the capital city. Others are in Mzuzu in the very north of Malawi and in or near the cities of Zomba, Mangochi and Salima which are located along Lake Malawi. If we can equip and train the youth to reach the cities and villages around then we are reaching all of Malawi. What an inspiring vision.
We were able to spent time with and bring some of the resources to Frank and Charles who are Active Members in Blantyre. Frank continues to minister in the prison and in hospitals while also teaching the 12 Foundation Stones Course to a group of youngsters from a high school. We were able to leave him with a set of the Activated booklets, 10 of the Key Bible Verse booklets for his students, 12 FSC manuals and some children’s materials.
Charles continues to teach the 12 FS Course to a handful of youths with great potential. He has an inspiring vision of really making a lasting difference in communities through skills development and helping people start small businesses. Poverty is rife in Malawi and people need to be ministered to in word and in deed. The set of Activated booklets will help him create interest and minister to those who he is teaching already.
Our journey took us then to one of the outlying areas of Zomba where we were welcomed by singing and dancing youth club members. They escorted us with much fanfare to our meeting place where some of them would camp out. We met up with Lawrence who oversees all the Activated Youth Clubs in Malawi. He had brought a bus load of youth (40 of them) from Lilongwe. We had meetings over a day and a half with everyone, getting to know each other, having classes, enjoying song and dance and the presentation of their drama team. We got a taste of the simple life that most of the people of Malawi experience, heating the bathwater and cooking over open fires and having to haul the water from somewhere to do so. We left Pastor Maluwa who oversees the three clubs in the area with two sets of Activated booklets to share and Key Bible Verse booklets for each of the club members. We had brought a bicycle to make it easier for him to reach the clubs in the different areas as well as a soccer ball for the youth.
It was good to see the needs of the various places we visited first hand. Though many of the youth leaders are fluent in English some, often the members and especially those in the rural areas are not. One of the youth leaders in Zomba showed potential in translating which inspired us to appoint two people with abilities to help translate the 12 FS Course into Chichewa. Our goal is to get the course and the Key Bible Verse booklet into their language bit by bit. We saw a lot of hunger for training amongst the people of Malawi.
For the weekend we were to travel to Mangochi where we had rented a small lodge to hold our meetings in. We were situated right on the shores of Lake Malawi in a lodge belonging to a member of The Gideons International. On meeting us and the youth there, he arranged a donation of 100 New Testaments for the youth.
What a blessing it was to sow into the lives of the people there. As we held our meetings outdoors right by the lake, people from the community and around would join us as soon as the music and singing would begin. We had a wonderful opportunity to share the Gospel with the many that would gather. They readily came forward for prayer and/or to receive Jesus as their Lord and Saviour, a total of at least 300. It was difficult to leave there after the electrifying meetings. We left 1 of the sets and a Key Bible Verse booklet for each of the members.
A 6 hour journey took us to the very top of Malawi to Mzuzu. Here we were to meet Pastor Kasimba and his wife Patricia who are active witnessing and teaching the youth. They appreciated the 3 sets of booklets, the Key Bible Verses, tracts and other materials we left with them after holding a meeting at their humble little house. We also met and left a set with Pastor Dennis who works with 17 Catholic churches.
The last leg of our long three week trip took us to Lilongwe where we went to the clubs to meet as many of the over 100 members as we could. We tried to leave them with a clear vision of what being active for Jesus is all about and answered questions about the Word and their personal walk with the Lord. We joined in on one of their outreaches to see how they are doing in sharing the gospel with their fellowman. Though there is a lot that can be improved we saw that their heart is in the right place.
We based out of our small youth centre that we are renting for them and held a graduation ceremony there for those who completed the 12 FS Course. We took this opportunity to present the leaders of various clubs with a total of 6 sets of Activated material for them.
We are sending 2 sets of Activated books to Salima in Malawi in the next couple of days which brings the total sets distributed up to 17 so far. The remaining 3 sets are kept for future needs and opportunities.
We would like to include some comments of what attending the 12 FS Classes and studying the Activated booklets has done for some of the youth leaders that have gone through the course or are still doing so. Pastor Sementi, one of the teachers and recipient, reported what they shared with him:
· They feel blessed and favoured, for they have been given Bibles and free magazines and other spiritual books. They are especially thankful for the 12 Foundation Stones Bible Course they have been given because it has revealed Biblical secrets and deepened their spiritual lives.
· Reading the Activated books through several times has improved their English grammar and sentence structure. They are at last writing, speaking and reading better English which helps them improve academically.
· They had heard about prophets and prophecy without knowing what these terms really mean. Through the Activated course they have gained understanding and knowledge. Some say that they had been praying to God asking things of Him without knowing that they should also give thanks, praise Him and pay attention listening to God.
· God’s word says that the youth are the leaders of tomorrow. The Activated Club has opened their eyes and they said that they now realize that they are no longer to wait for the future to come but that they can start leading and serving the Lord now.
· One youth shared how he thought that he didn’t need to respect those who are not born again Christians. He said that he learned from Activated that God commands us to respect everyone.
· They mentioned that Activated is helping bring some life control measures in their society. For instance they gather together every Sunday afternoon and during the week for Bible study, quizzes and teachings. This takes the place of hanging around with friends that have nothing positive to do or live for.
· Others said that they were trying to do their best to go out and preach but were met with challenges and difficulties as some people asked them difficult questions which they were unable to answer. Activated has equipped them and they find that things that were hard to answer before are no more difficult.
We feel very privileged to work with people that have such a sincere desire to grow in the Lord and bring His word to the nation. Malawi is a Christian but very poor country. The vast majority of the people have little or no access to training material such as Activated Ministries provided for them through this sponsorship. They were thrilled to receive so much.
On this trip we have been able to personally see and assess the needs and we can tell you first hand that these books and DVDs were well placed. We are sure that they will be put to good use to teach and train others to take up the torch to reach their country and communities for Jesus.
We truly appreciate the help you have been to us in this effort of spreading the word far and wide. THANK YOU VERY MUCH!