Vol. 2. Issue 2
We’re running a little late with the newsletter this month. February is a shorter month, of course, and the Dunlop family has been busy preparing to leave for Kenya. The Sending Forth Service at Grace Chapel Markham was a special occasion. Rev. Titus Nzoka has been getting the college transitioned with a fulltime program. He also reports on the graduation for the previous part-time students.
FAME Challenge met on Saturday evening (24th Feb.) in Hillsborough, Northern Ireland, with Alan and Irene Dunlop (founders). This is a group of young people interested in promoting the work of the Kingdom and hoping to take a group out in the summer of 2018 for evangelistic work.
Missions in History
February 28th, 1807 — Robert Morrison sailed from Britain as the first Protestant missionary to China. When he died 27 years later, Morrison had baptized only 10 Chinese. However, his pioneering work (including a six-volume dictionary and a translation of the Bible) greatly helped those missionaries who came after him.
Evangelical Ministries Ukambani
– Strengthening the Local Churches –
Titus, the college Principal, reports that the graduation held on 3rd February was wonderful service. Nineteen students from the previous part-time program graduated. Sourcing books has proven difficult in Kenya, especially Greek books. We are thankful for a friend in Northern Ireland who was able to gather up a few.
Titus has been transferred from his church in Nairobi to a church in Nguni, not far from the FAME Centre. He was installed in his new charge on 25th February.
– …through simple and compassionate tasks we have established an acceptance of the gospel of Christ. –
Opened in 2006 our orphanage now houses, feeds, clothes and educates 190 boys and girls ranging from 4 years old to 18 years. At 18 years, government regulations demand that our children enter the broader community. We assist them in this transition, making sure that they have the best possible chance of a successful acceptance and preparation for independent adulthood.
Out of Africa
– “All authority is given unto me in heaven and in earth…go ye therefore” Matthew 28:18 –
Africa has played a significant role in biblical history and in later Church history. Think of Moses in Africa, or Joseph and the growth of the Israelite people there. Think of Jesus also who was taken to Egypt as an infant, and of Simon of Cyrene, (Libya), who carried the cross of Jesus.
The sun had not long set on the Day of Pentecost before the gospel had reached Africa. Other African’s, Jewish Diaspora, like those from “Egypt, and in the parts of Libya about Cyrene” (Acts 2:10) had witnessed Pentecost, but the Ethiopian Eunuch is the clearest link between Pentecost and Africa (Acts 8:27-39).
The gospel moved quickly into Africa, extending, according to some historians, the entire length of the Nile in sub-Saharan regions as far as Uganda and Kenya, through Ethiopia and Sudan. The gospel most certainly moved along the north coast, to Libya, Eritrea, Tunisia, Algeria and Morocco, in cities like Alexandria, Carthage and Hippo. For five hundred years the African Church grew and from North Africa had a tremendous influence on European Christianity.
Although Coptic Christians in Egypt can celebrate two thousand years of unbroken history, the strength of the Islamic Arab conquest in the 6th Century greatly reduced the African Church, subjecting Christians to great suffering, martyrdom or slavery. Others were exiled and brought their African Christianity into Europe with them.
From Africa, historians trace the origins of the European university; key theological dogmas were fleshed out by African theologians. We owe a great debt, therefore, to the African Church.
(Taken, for the most part, from How Africa Shaped the Christian Mind: Rediscovering The African Seedbed of Western Christianity by Thomas C. Oden)
Sending Forth Service
– Grace Chapel Markham –
On all accounts, the Sending Forth Service on Sunday evening (25th Feb.) was a great blessing. The singing was tremendous with a special piece by Mary Karas called “I Will Go.” Pastor Habib Sakr brought a pointed and powerful challenge to the missionary pastor and his family and then to the congregation. He exhorted Aaron to remember, first, his accountability to God; secondly, the priorities established by God (to take heed to himself, his wife and family, and the ministry of the Word); thirdly to cultivate the disposition mandated by God (ie. a servant’s heart, a realistic dependence on God) and finally, the absence of the fear of man.
Pastor Sakr then directed his remarks to the congregation and challenged them to maintain a climate in the Church that will not grieve the Holy Spirit. At this point, he emphasized the interconnectedness of the people of God. What the people of God do at home, he stressed, either for good or ill, has ripple effects that will break upon the shores of Kenya. He then left the congregation with a three-fold charge. First, a determination to be faithful in intercession for the missionary family; secondly, to maintain a commitment to care for the temporal needs of the missionary family; and finally, to maintain frequent communication with the missionary family.
You can hear the message on the video of the service or an overview on the “Five Minutes of FAME” podcast on SermonAudio.
Five Minutes of Fame Podcast
– Sending Forth Service –
Rev. Dunlop enjoyed the fellowship of fellow believers as he travelled around to raise awareness and support for the new college and his family as they prepare for the field.
At the end of January Rev. Dunlop travelled to churches in Calgary, Vancouver and Victoria, to Sunnyvale in California, and then to Cornerstone Chruch in Singapore, where he renewed fellowship with an old friend from Northern Ireland, Rev. Paul Ferguson. While in Singapore, he spoke at a number of evangelistic meetings for Filippino workers. Here a podcast here reporting on the visit to Singapore.
Pray that out of these meetings the Lord would grow a body of believers with a heart for missions in Asia and Africa.
News from the Field
- Rain – People in the area of the FAME Centre are excited that rain fell today. The short rains have come which gives hope for a successful harvest. Pray to this end.
- Graduation at the Bible college graduation on February 3rd. 19 students graduated. Some of these students have already enrolled for the new full-time courses.
In the Reformed and Evangelical tradition, FAME is a “word and deed” ministry bringing the hope of the gospel into the poverty and famine of eastern Kenya. Water wells, famine relief, child rescue and medical facilities constitute our main humanitarian work, through which we have won the confidence and ear of the people. This, in turn, has enabled us to carry on an extensive program of evangelism in remote villages, local schools, and in prisons across the Eastern Province of Kenya.
At our Resource Center and FAME Reformed Theological College, we come alongside local pastors, elders, and Sunday school teachers, helping them to establish local Churches and strengthen the body of Christ.