Since February 2013, the Seventh-day Adventist church in Angola has been actively sharing a message of hope through health expos, ministering to the sick and elderly, public evangelistic meetings, and small groups.
With 57 preachers from South America and Brazil , 3000 evangelistic sites with series conducted by laypeople, 50 000 small home-based bible study groups (using material sponsored by Lightbearers), 68 local Pastors conducting evangelistic meetings and 60 Pastors and Administrators from the SID territory preaching in individual venues … the city of Luanda was permeated with the gospel.
As a culmination of this intentional drive to make a difference in the lives of all people in Angola, the SDA church gathered together in two stadiums to worship the Creator on the Sabbath (September 21, 2013). The SDA church had meetings in stadiums before. The difference with this meeting was that it was a unique gathering of those who were recently baptized.
Pastor Gilberto Araujo, in his final report to the group of international preachers, gave a summary and result of Luanda for Christ: “as a result of this mission to the city of Luanda, 23 179 people received Christ as their personal Savior and were baptized into the SDA church. Of that number, 3039 were baptized during the past ten days. The total number of those baptized is not yet finalized because numbers from various evangelistic sites in the city is still being reported to the church headquarters. “While we praise God for this result, we will not stop here. We are committed to intensify our efforts and use this experience as a foretaste and example of what is possible when the entire church is mobilized to reach those in desperate need of hope which is found in Christ alone” Dr Paul Ratsara (President – SID). “We appeal to the individual members (old and newly baptized), to continue to share the gospel and work with the leadership of the church to fulfill the command of Jesus to preach the gospel” he continued.
Elder Michael Ryan (Vice-President, General Conference), in his address to the membership gathered in two stadiums on the September 21 called the church to accountability and encouraged each person to use their talents and means to spread the gospel. “God has begun a good work in Luanda and will continue to bless you as you serve Him faithfully,” he said.
While more than 60 000 people, passionate about their love for Christ, filled the two stadiums, hundreds gathered outside the stadium gates eager to hear the Word of God again. Pastor Passmore Hachalinga (NE Angola Union President), expressed gratitude for the unforgettable experience over the past few months. In choosing Luanda, as the SID city for Urban evangelism, the entire church in SID will be encouraged to intensify their efforts as each union plans to hold multiple evangelistic meetings in each city of the Southern Africa Indian Ocean region in 2014.
As the church continues and focuses on the “Fishers of Men” program (training of newly baptized members), more workers are inspired to do their part in spreading the gospel.
“When the cities are worked as God would have them, the result will be the setting in operation of a mighty movement such as we have not yet witnessed” Medical Ministry, p. 304.
Dr Paul Charles
SID Communication … We Connect