Sharing the gospel in Nigeria
On paper it looked simple.
Dial the numbers and start the call. Only, the last time I tried this I had failed to connect with someone on the other line repeatedly. I was getting familiar with the message, “The call you are trying to place cannot be completed. Goodbye.”
Nigeria’s poor internet infrastructure makes connecting with team members there difficult. But it is a far bigger issue for Nigeria’s healthcare system. Hospitals run without 24/7 access to electricity. It is hard to order medicines. Getting to a hospital can be a three-day journey on foot for people in rural communities.
The health crisis is so serious that the average life expectancy for a Nigerian person is only 53 years old.
This is where our All Saints Rural Health Service program volunteers come in. They visit rural villages far away from healthcare facilities. With the support of Kingdom Workers, they supply light medical care and health education to people there. They also share the gospel.
I reached out to Michael Toppe, our Nigeria Field Manager, to learn more. He connected me with Pastor Obi, the newly elected Synod President in Nigeria who works with the All Saints Rural Health Services program. As I dialed his number, I took a deep breath. On the second ring I heard, “Hello, this is Reverend Obi speaking.” And with that, we launched into a near hour-long conversation.
Pastor Obi, newly elected Synod President in Nigeria.
Pastor Obi shared, “When the [women] are trained and they go out, we tell them to never just visit the [church] members, they should be visiting every person in the community. Everyone that is affected. They should make sure—they should try their best—to assist those people, not only our members. We are not concerned for our members alone."
One of the volunteers, a woman named Sunday, shared why this matters. She wrote,
“There was a particular woman in one compound I entered. As I was trying to gather the people of that compound so I could tell them about the gospel, this woman refused to join us. I asked questions about this woman and they told me she lost two of her children. From that day she had been denying that there is a God. She refused to hear anything about God. But at last, I was able to meet with her one-on-one and I was able to encourage her. And thank God, she listened to the word of God and she was happy again.”
Grace, another volunteer in the All Saints Rural Health Services program, talks with a family to assess the health issues they face.
The medical education offered by volunteers like Sunday save lives physically. That is why each year, volunteers receive light medical care training. But spreading the gospel is the key to saving lives spiritually. Pastor Obi shared, “We prepare and train women who will go out to evangelize and do this work for God.” Combining gospel outreach with medical care ensures that people experience holistic healing.
The women who volunteer their time are on the front lines in the battle for souls. They bravely and boldly use their time in service to God and for His glory. And it is all possible thanks to people like you.
As we were wrapping up our conversation, Pastor Obi shared, “There are a lot of things happening in Nigeria. But I know God is taking care. I know I also want to thank you and the Kingdom Workers for their help."
Kimberly Magsig is the Content Specialist for Kingdom Workers. She enjoys getting to share God's word each day in her work. In her free time she enjoys spending time in nature, trying her hand at cooking new recipes, and having friends over for a game night.