In North America, we are very accustomed to having a church building, a full-time pastor who is paid a salary by the church, Sunday school classrooms, and sometimes even a gymnasium. Often we think that without the right facilities, the work of the Lord will not progress. As I read BJ Schultz’s prayer letter, I was reminded that God is effectively working around the world—even in places that have less than ideal facilities. Brother Schultz and his family are BIMI missionaries faithfully serving in Tanzania, Africa. In his letter, he tells the story of a trip he took with a national pastor named Pelegrino (Pele for short) in order to visit another national pastor named John.
We finally made it to Bariadi after nearly four hours of driving. We met Pastor John at his work office. I was surprised that John had a job other than pastoring the six churches that he has started. But neither John nor Pele are able to receive regular income from their churches….Pastor John took us to his church located next door to his home.... I noticed a few benches that were permanently built under a large shade tree next to the church. When I asked John about them, he explained that those benches were used for a Bible class he teaches every week. He then pointed to another tree and said, “That tree is where the ladies Bible study meets and over there under that large tree is where we have children’s church on Sunday. I want to use that tree over there for another class.” To John, every tree is a potential Bible classroom. In addition to pastoring, church planting, discipling, and working for a living, these two pastors are also in charge of the Lake Victoria Baptist Bible College. Right now, there are about 75–100 students who come every six months for a week of classes. All of the students have been recognized as having a heart to serve God and a desire to grow in faith and knowledge of the Word of God.
The dedication of these two national pastors is a challenge and a blessing to me. God is at work around the world—even under the trees in Africa. It is an amazing privilege to partner with you in worldwide missions and to be part of God’s eternal plan. Thank you for your faithful support. May the LORD richly bless you!
David H. Snyder
David & Barb Snyder Read more about the Snyders. He can be contacted through the BIMI office (423) 344-5050.