Equipping Samaritan’s Purse evangelists to share the Gospel in remote villages across Niger
Samaritan’s Purse has created a backpack evangelism kit that makes it easier for evangelists to share the Gospel in remote villages in Niger and across Sub-Saharan Africa.Equip an EvangelistThe kit includes a DVD player and speakers that can be powered by electricity, rechargeable solar batteries, a generator, or even a motorcycle engine. A Samaritan’s Purse evangelist on a motorcycle can carry the kit to distant villages and effectively share the Good News, utilizing tools like the Jesus film to illustrate the message. The kit is especially useful in Muslim communities where simply showing an interest in the Gospel can put a seeker in danger. The DVD player provides a mini theater where an individual, family, or a small group can gather in a more intimate setting to learn about the Gospel and ask questions without fear.
“The DVD kits enables us to be more effective and personal,” said an evangelist in Niger. “They give us more opportunities to explain the meaning and depth of God’s Word and hold discussions that cannot yet be held in public. Last month the Gospel was presented to 314 people, when we had a target to present the Gospel to 100.”
In one Nigerien village, the ailing mother of a village chief asked a Samaritan’s Purse evangelist to pray for her health. The next day, she returned to the evangelist’s home, completely recovered and filled with excitement
“Now I know that there is no God as powerful as the God you Christian’s serve because I have experienced what I saw on the screen,” she said.
Even her son, the chief, agreed: “What you are showing us is the truth!”With permission from their parents, groups of boys and girls join children’s clubs where evangelists tell Bible stories, show movies, and play Christian music.
“It’s not uncommon to encounter children singing Christian songs or reciting Bible verses they learned from watching DVDs or joining the children’s clubs,” an evangelist said.
Through a variety of evangelistic efforts in Niger, two church fellowships were recently formed.
Danger and Rejection
Sharing the Gospel with Muslims in Sub-Saharan Africa can be challenging for evangelists, but it’s even more dangerous for Muslims who put their faith in Christ.
A herdsman in Niger named Abah heard the Gospel from Samaritan’s Purse workers who were coordinating clean water and agricultural projects in his village. He started visiting the team evangelist, a Christian national, asking questions about Jesus and the Bible. Abah knew that breaking away from his family’s faith and traditions could be devastating, but he felt compelled to accept Christ.
Watching the Jesus film and seeing the Samaritan’s Purse workers minister to people in the community helped Abah on his journey to faith.“I saw the manifestation of the power of God in the Jesus film when Jesus healed the sick,” Abah said. “I experienced this same power working in my family when my wife and I were sick. The pastor prayed for us in the Name of Jesus, and we were healed. That is what led me to believe.”
Abah meets regularly with the Samaritan’s Purse evangelist for discipleship and prayer.
“I am very joyful because I know that I have peace with a God who responds to my prayers,” Abah said. “Often, when my wife is sick, my prayers for her in the Name of Jesus have given her back her health.”
As Abah expected, his profession of faith caused conflict within his family.“My biggest fear today is of my own father,” Abah said. “He wanted to kill me because I accepted Christ. Each time he talks to me, he only insults me. It really bothers me to be treated this way by my father.”
Despite being rejected by his family, Abah wants to go to Bible school to learn more about Christ and to learn how to become a better witness to others.
“We are confident that God is planting seeds in these hearts that are so thirsty for knowledge,” one village evangelist said. “This is the use of technology in the best way for our context. To God be the glory!”