April 30, 2018

Conference Communion - Called out of darkness into His Light - 1 Peter 2 : 9

Thank you for all your prayers for our annual conference it was incredible. For those who don't know, yearly we, as a church, put on an annual conference to graduate our Bible College Students and welcome Pr Scibelli and guests who travel with him. 
This year we had the honor of hosting our brothers and sisters from all Southern African Churches. Usually this regional conference takes place in Zambia,  but was changed to Malawi similarly like the European conference. What was amazing was the amount of visitors who came on such short notice. For many who travelled, they came at great sacrifice since few of them have formal employment. For many, just the ticket is a month or two of income. We had visitors from Zambia, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Congo, South Africa, China, France and USA. 

It was amazing seeing the Zams and Zims coming in on their big coach buses to hear great messages and have great fellowship. 

There were so many memorable moments, but two that stood out were the leadership meeting before the conference. It was an intimate time of questions and answers with Pr Scibelli. The second was our ordination service. It was so encouraging to see two Malawian leaders become pastors: Pastor Yamikani and Pastor Malrone. These two men have been so faithful and such a help, we were so happy to see them ordained. 

(Pr. Malrone and Pr. Yamikani are the two with matching shirts at right 1Cor 14:40)

Times of fellowship before and around the Malawian conference 

February 24, 2018

Serving our generation

Hello and thanks for your continual prayers and support,
God said that David had served his generation (Acts 13:36), I thought about what that means for us today. Recently, our beloved evangelist, America’s pastor, Billy Graham went home to be with the Lord. He is a great example of a man who served his generation. As I went on a visit of one of our first time visitors, this principle was so evident. In our church in Malawi, we have a practice of visiting any first time visitor’s home. One of our visitors was a man named Golden. He wasn’t comfortable with us visiting his house right away, so he opted for us to all meet at a local hotel. Upon arrival we found ourselves with Stanley, our church member who invited Golden to church, and two other friends of Stanley. Stanly is a gatherer. He has invited 5 friends to church. Serving your generation is stepping into the plan that God sets before you. God had set before me these 4 men who wanted to hear a Word from God. Anyone can serve their generation, if you are willing, God will put people in your path that need to hear God’s Word. It turned out one of the men was a Muslim, but so open, as many Malawian Muslims are. He always questioned what Christ’s title, “Son of God” meant. We explained to him that it doesn’t mean a physical son but one who is commissioned to do a work, one under an order, like the “Sons of the Prophets”. Also it means the fact that God came into the human race, God as a man to redeem man. This explanation gave great clarity to Somos and he prayed to receive Christ  with us. God put him in our path that day.

God answered two other long standing prayers this month. First was the desire to visit the Muslim stronghold city of Mangoci. We have always heard stories of this city as one intolerant to Christians, which made us want to go even more. For almost 4 years we have mentioned it and finally God brought it to pass. In the past, we have been in other Muslim strongholds and we have found the best way to cut through the uncomfort of the environment is to attack it with putting up the sketchboard and preaching. Of course, we are using the Pauline method toward the Athenians in Acts 17 which caused some of them to hear Paul again.  Amazingly we were met with warmth and great reception. We did sketchboard in front of 30 people in the market, and at the end of the story as we gave the invitation you could have heard a pin drop. No one raised their hands. After the 3rd time of asking if anyone would like to believe in Christ, a 3 year old child tied to the back of a Muslim Mother raised her hand. This released the atmosphere and people started laughing and 20 hands went up. My translator, Raphael, gave his testimony that he was a Muslim that joined our Bible school. After hearing the Word of God, his soul was satisfied and he received Christ. It was the perfect 1-2 punch. We were joined by my Mom and Dad. We rented a taxi of our long time friend and driver, Roger, who is also a believer. Since we hired him we also put him to work. We had him evangelizing with us. He was so excited to evangelize because he had never done it in his church. – Serving our generation.

Our second answer to prayer was to have a marriage seminar. Like everywhere, Marriage is under attack. Its definition and its place in society, are among the things that are challenged; Malawi is no exception. Thank God we had 20 couples from both our churches together for a meal and a message. We took pictures of each couple and many of our singles were the servers so they also could get some wisdom. It was so well received, so much so, that one husband said that it was the best day of his life! Wow!

Lastly, as we started our new Bible College Semester, we were given a great gift. Not only did we have record registration: 225 Students; but we also were informed that our regional Conference, Zamcon, will be held with us here in Malawi. For this we really petition you for your prayers. On April 13-15 we will have close to 200 travel here from 7 different countries not to mention the close to 500 people we had last Malawicon. Please pray for wisdom for us and God’s hand to be on us. Maybe even God will lead you to visit us. The theme is “Out of Darkness, Into Light” 1Pet 2:9. 

January 15, 2018

An incredible miracle in Malawi

Living in the Third World, we see death in our face a lot more frequently than we would like. It seems like weekly occurrences of funerals from neighbors or extended families in our church or Bible college from a variety of causes: Malaria, High Blood pressure, strokes, traffic accidents. Etc. Unfortunately many of the deaths are children, and also unfortunately many could be prevented. In the compounds, local neighborhoods, it is not uncommon for children to fall in poorly covered hand-dug wells or septic tanks. A mother will be cooking and let her child play outside and the unthinkable happens. 9 out of 10 times it means certain death as the wells can be up to 20 feet deep and full of water especially in rainy season.
All of this went through my mind this past Sunday as I received a report that one of our Single Mothers, Alice, had her son fall in a well. Immediately I thought we will be doing a funeral. To my amazement, I was told that he was in the hospital and improving. Obviously an act of God had spared this child. Again to my greater amazement, as I was speaking, Alice and her son walked in the church. I stopped my message mid-sentence to inform the church of what happened. All of us were blown away that she had come to church. The event had happened on Friday evening. We just all stood up and raised our hands to God in thanksgiving. Before closing I asked Alice to give a testimony of what actually happened and we were all awestruck.

 Steven George(Alice's Son who was named after Pr Scibelli And my father, Pr George) is a very active 3 year old. He and my son constantly run around the church, we call them our future stunt men. They are jumping and rolling without fear. Steven had been playing outside his house with his friends while his Mom was cooking on the patio. After a few minutes of not hearing her son's voice Alice began to look to where he wandered off to. The other friends began nervously pointing to the community well that is usually covered. She could faintly hear Steven yelling "Mama!" at the bottom of the well. The Neighbors sprang into action. A man started shimmying down the well and to his amazement he found Steven pressing his arms on both sides of the well just to keep his head above water. When they got him out, they found he had swallowed a great deal of water. In Malawi the quickest way to the hospital is the back of a motorcycle, which Alice had no money for. By God's Grace the neighbors gave money to get him there. Upon arrival they tried to give Steven a medication to make him vomit out the water, but after refusing the pill, he just ended up using the little boys room and all the water past. Alice said that if God delivered the Hebrew boys from the furnace that He would deliver her son from the well. And there Steven George was running around the church as a living testimony. Amazing!

Alice and Steven George

December 04, 2017

1 Samuel 20:23 says the Lord be between us forever.

We are SO THANKFUL for your friendship, love, support, and prayers. Words can't express how amazing it is to have such a family. 1 Samuel 20:23 says the Lord be between us forever. That is the feeling we have. We wanted to share some pictures of the past weeks in Noah-vember.

This is our latest church picture from Picture Sunday that we did early this month. We invited everyone to come get their picture taken and then invited them back the next week to collect their picture.

This is a Bible study we did in a village about 3 hours from where we live. One of our church members, Felix Malute, was witnessing to one of his business prospects and the man was so overwhelmed by the message of God's grace that he paid for Felix to come to his home village last year to share the same message. We came with him on the follow up trip. Such receptive people!

That's Felix with the Blue Shirt. It was 2.5 hours to the main City near the village and then another half hour on motorbikes. We rode 3 to a bike to get to the village (Thank God this was before Thanksgiving).

This was the Ladies Tea. They all got together, prayed, made Christmas Cards, and Mama Carol shared the Word. That evening she was on Nationwide Radio speaking about Women's role in the church.