Introduction/Purpose: This report covers the major activities of the Department which include the School of Evangelism and Regional Conference of the International Leadership Institute (ILI)), EvangeMed, and the Radio Ministry facilitated and sponsored by the Department of Evangelism and Missions (DEM) of the Liberia Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church (LAC/UMC).
Resource Mobilization: “Depend on it, God’s work done God’s way will never lack God’s supply” (Hudson Taylor). This statement is indeed true to the life of the Department since I took over. I strongly believe and practice this profound statement. At the beginning of the year we wrote two proposals (School of Evangelism for the Southeastern and EvangeMed for the southwestern regions). We are eternally grateful to the United Methodist Foundation of Western North Carolina, Inc, USA for giving us a grant of five thousand United States dollars for the implementation of these projects. Contained in the report are the results generated.
The School of Evangelism: The purpose for the School of Evangelism was to equip District Evangelists, Pastors, and Church leaders within the southeastern region of Liberia as a way of preparing them for effective and efficient evangelism and ministry and sound biblical leadership role in the Church and the nation. This training was evangelistic in nature. We are eternally grateful to The United Methodist Foundation of Western North Carolina, Inc. for the financial grant for the implementation of this project.
Team/Facilitators: The ILI Regional Training Manual was used as the teaching material for the training and conference. A five-man team departed Monrovia for Fish Town, River Gee on June 23 and arrived on 24th June. The team comprised of Rev. Isaac Chukpue-Padmore, Director of Evangelism and Missions, LAC/UMC, Rev. H. Nyenorsee Hinneh, I, Associate Director, DEM, LAC/UMC, Kenneth C. Jackson, Associate Pastor, E. Harding Smythe UMC, Frances Aaron, a volunteer at the DEM, LAC/UMC, and Bro. Emmanuel Kollie who served as chauffeur for the trip.
Topics facilitated: There were fifteen topics facilitated as far as the curriculum of ILI Regional Conference is concerned. Rev. Isaac Chukpue-Padmore, the Director of DEM, LAC/UMC and also a Doctoral Candidate at the Asbury Theological Seminary facilitated the topics: ILI Vision and Expectation, Biblical Leadership, Stewardship, The Birth of a Vision, Goal Setting, and Finishing Well; the Rev. H. Nyenorsee Hinneh, I, Associate Director, DEM, LAC/UMC and also an ILI Alumni facilitated the topics: Intimacy with God, Family Priority, and Integrity; while Pastor Kenneth C. Jackson, an ILI Alumni and also one of the faculty members for ILI Liberia National Conference Team facilitated: Passion for the Harvest, Practice of Evangelism, Mentoring by Discipleship, Mobilization and Obstacle. Sis. Frances Aaron, a recent graduate of Africa University and Emmanuel Kollie served as “Aaron and Hur” in Exodus 17:8-13, 24:13 during this time. We want to appreciate these spirit-filled people of God for the tireless and selfless support.
Participants/Outcome: The conference started and ran through June 25-27 2013. It brought together four (4) districts namely: 1) Grand Gedeh, 2) Cape Palmas, 3) Garraway, and 4) Kru Coast. The Superintendents for the above districts were present. Additionally, there were 40 participants who benefitted from the training. They were certificated.
The outcome of the training was rewarding. The training was a time of spiritual reawakening, renewal, and revival. In fact, many of the participants confessed that they have been lacked of something as far as doing effective ministry and their leadership was concerned. The testimonies from most of the participants authentic the above point.
The Evangemed (Outreach with Medication and the Gospel)
EvangeMed is an Outreach Ministry of our Department established few years ago in Liberia. This area covers the Aged, Hospital and Prison Ministries of Liberia Annual Conference, The United Methodist Church. EvangeMed seeks to share the Good News through Word, deeds and Christian social actions to all, irrespective of denomination. While the work is done among United Methodists, all God’s children in every area that we work definitely benefit. This ministry takes the Gospel, food and medication to our targeted population within the conference. For this year, the St. John River District benefited. This ministry is totally evangelistic.
The Department was the guest of the St. John River District, specifically at the Camphor Mission Station from December 5-8, 2013. The evangelistic activities with the district included the sharing of the gospel, the showing of the Jesus Film in the Bassa language and the sharing of some First Aid medication with the participants.
Our statistics showed that more than two hundred people including women, children, and the elderly received free medication during this period. Some of these people came from nearby villages in the Camphor area. Importantly, the Jesus Film, through the power of the Holy Spirit, impacted many lives as the result of the visual gospel message. The people testified that they were really connected to the film because they saw and understood the gospel story in their own language. Many people re-dedicated and re-committed their lives to Jesus.
We are sincerely grateful to the District Superintendent, Rev. G. Roosevelt Goah, the staff, and nurses of the Camphor Mission Station for their accommodation and assistance.
Radio Ministry: The Radio Ministry of the Department, The Hour That Inspires and Challenges, which started in 2011, is ongoing with the United Methodist Radio Station, EL 98.7 on every Wednesday, 8-8:30 P.M. The Rev. Princess Knuckles and your humble servant are serving as the hosts. We receive great testimonies from listeners on the impact this radio ministry is having on them.
God’s Power: As one of the conference wide evangelistic activities of the LAC, our Department encourages districts and local churches to plan evangelistic programs in observance of this day and send offering to the Department as their support. Many of our districts and churches have not caught this vision yet. However, we are grateful to the below Districts and churches for complying. They are:
Kokoyah District ……………L$3500.00
Monrovia District Churches
S. T. Nagbe……………L$ 5000.00
Tubman UMC…………L$ 4005.00 & US$2.00
E. Harding Smythe……US$20.00
John 3:16: We were blessed in 2008 with a Path Finder Jeep donated by the Church in Norway through the instrumentality of Rev. Aske who was a guest to the conference assigned to our Department. For evangelistic purpose, the buyer and donor of the vehicle requested that it carries the name (John 3:16) as a way of spreading the Good News at all times. Last year, the Business Office of the LAC/UMC decided to change the vehicle’s plate to UMC-27. I hope that this action won’t defeat the purpose of the donor.
Challenges: The DEM, LAC/UMC is not exempted from challenges. Indeed, we have the passion for the harvest, but the lack of the adequate resources remains our major challenge. Our hope is that the LAC/UMC will be able to intentionally support the Department. Bishop and members of this conference please be reminded that the support from the conference as budgeted is not forthcoming. We hope the Conference will be realistic in budgeting for this department as it is one of the priority areas of the Bishop as expressed in nearly all of his Episcopal addresses. It is through evangelism that all of us are Christians today.
Commendation and Conclusion: Bishop Innis, please accept our heartfelt thanks and gratitude for keeping us on staff since 2007 to the present. However, may we humbly remind you of our commitment to the itinerary ministry of our Church. Wherever you send, we will go. May we also extend thanks and appreciation to our spouses, children, and the department staff for their tireless support to our ministry. Lest we forget our national and internal partners for all their supports. May God bless all of you.
Faithfully submitted, Isaac Chukpue-Padmore, Director