How does a new church come into being in conflict-ridden South Sudan?
Six years ago, at Kanyara Worship Center in South Sudan, missionaries George and Madeline were praying for their staff and volunteers. During a one-on-one prayer time with Peter Modi, a gifted worship leader who faithfully served at this church, George asked him, “Is there anything burning in your heart to do for God but possibly you feel that it might never work out?”
“Yes, I would like to be a pastor.”
“You will need pastoral training for four years at a Bible College in Kampala,” George explained.
“That would be too expensive,” replied Peter.
“If God wants you to be a pastor, you will need to take that step of faith,” encouraged George.
“If God makes a way for me to go, then surely I will go.”
Four years later, fully funded, Peter graduated from Bible college. During Peter’s time in school, civil war had broken out back in his home area in South Sudan, and he received word that he could not return. Instead, he had been assigned to live in the Ariwa Refugee Camp in northern Uganda. The UN provided for him a small plot for him to build a house on. Peter moved there and built a place to live.
Not long after, Peter started going to his neighbours asking them if they knew Jesus and if they had any needs that he could take to God in prayer. That single act of reaching out and praying for people led to the planting of a small church in this refugee camp. Our missions organization provided the funds; Peter organized the labourers. Through door to door visitations (or hut to hut), many came to salvation in Christ, and a church was born. After a year, the church outgrew the first structure, so more funds were provided to build a larger meeting place.
Fast forward to 2021–Peter sent word that he was taking a fact-finding trip into a particular region of South Sudan where he was sensing that God wanted them to plant a church. Upon his return, he indicated several locations that he felt were ripe for harvest. Through prayer and discernment, a young man named Lomeling Bagazi was chosen to go. He had been Peter’s right-hand man during the Ariwa church plant and had proven himself faithful. With financial support, Lomeling went and found a suitable location to begin the church plant in South Sudan.
The Kingdom of God continues advancing around the world. First, Northview, as the great-grandmother and sponsoring church, sent funds to us to the grandmother church, Kanyara Worship Center (South Sudan). Out of Kanyara birthed Ariwa Worship Center (refugee camp in Uganda), and from there, a daughter church is being planted in South Sudan.
Please pray that the soil continues to be fertile and that Lomeling will find favour with the tribal people as he presents the gospel message in one of the most difficult regions.
George & Madeline serve with The Maranatha Evangelistic Association.