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Praise and Prayer ~ July 19, 2021

Nigeria:

  • Muslim Outreach Ministry — Radio and TV
    • Praise: Millions of Muslim listeners — The FFICM Nigeria team continues to produce TV and radio broadcasts designed to reach predominantly Muslim areas on public TV and radio stations with teaching about the gospel and the Bible. The teachings address myths commonly believed by Muslims and offer the truths about the Bible. Praise God for this profoundly impactful ministry! Continue to pray for the impact of those who are listening to the TV and Radio broadcasts. We continue to shift which stations we are broadcasting on so as to have the best impact from the broadcasts.
    • Praise: MBBs turning to Jesus — Yusuf and Ahamed continue to lead many Muslim Background Believers (MBBs) to Christ through the radio teachings. Praise God! Yusuf teaches about how the Koran points to the Bible, points to Jesus as the Savior, and how the Koran talks about life after death. 
    • Pray: Wisdom — The team continues to strategize for effective evangelism and follow-up ministry among Muslims. Pray for wisdom as FFICM partners with Ahmed and Yusuf to develop these plans.
    • Pray: Follow-up new converts — Yusuf and Ahmed visit the converts in Katsina and the Imam from Kano. Pray for God’s protection, for wisdom, and for divine favor. Pray for safety and peace in Katsina State because there is a significant threat of violence there. 
  • Training this week
    • Pray: Training in Biu, Nigeria — New believer follow-up training for 50+ people, most of whom are farmers. This region is especially dangerous (a Boko Haram dominated area) so please pray for protection! 
      • Pray for the FFICM staff (Pankayes, Ishaku, and Sam) who have traveled to this training (10 hours drive on roads that are frequently not safe).
      • Pray for the participants, many of whom are giving up an important week of farming and working in their gardens in order to participate in this training.
      • Pray for safety as they will be traveling back on that same road on Saturday.
  • Upcoming Events
    • Pray: Zainab’s Discipleship school — Zainab will start a new section in her school next week. She will teach them to use the FFICM gospel tract. Many Christians don’t understand the Bible or the basics of salvation by faith. Pray that they know what it is to be a child of God. Pray that they would learn to use the word of God the right way. 
    • Pray: Fundraising Planning for FFICM-Nigeria — The team in Nigeria has begun to  explore local fundraising opportunities. They are planning an open house event that will take place on October 2nd. Pray for the planning process, the vision casting, and the outreach strategy. Prisca is leading the Fundraising Team. Jefferson Lee (an International Philanthropy consultant in the US) is mentoring the Nigerian team in the process. 
    • Praise: a new training opportunity — We have been invited to train seminary students from the United Methodist Church of Nigeria (UMCN) in Bambur!
    • Pray: 3 Major Upcoming Trainings — The FFICM team will lead three more trainings this summer: 
      • 1) July 26th-30th with Church of the Brethren Headquarters to train 70 leaders from many districts. 
      • 2) UMC of Nigeria Theological Seminary invited FFICM to train their theological students
      • 3) EKWA invited training for pastors and elders.
  • Safety amidst Dangerous Violence: “Nowhere is safe.” – Peter Wash (July 12, 2021)
    • Pray: Politically induced famine — Many Nigerian family farmers were not able to plant their crops to feed their families this year because of the threat of kidnapping. They will have to buy food instead of growing their own. This is unsustainable financially for the villagers and is leading to a food crisis since people cannot afford to feed their families. We need to pray for God’s intervention!!  
    • Pray: Ongoing kidnappings — The young students were taken by heavily armed abductors from a Baptist Boarding school during the night. It is yet another example of mass kidnapping from an academic institution in northern Nigeria this year, according to BBC. The students are being held for ransom. Pray for God’s divine protection of all the victims of kidnapping in Nigeria! 
      • To read more about the history of kidnapping in Nigeria, read the July-August 2021 issue of Christianity Today. 
      • Peter says that there was even someone kidnapped recently just 200 meters from his house.
      • At least 10 institutions in Nigeria have been hit by kidnappers and around 1,000 students and staff abducted since December 2020. (Reuters)
    • Pray: Safety while Traveling — Ongoing security issues make it difficult to travel and do ministry. You never know which road will be closed or where the bandits will be. There are very frequent attacks and insecurity in the land. Please pray for safety for the trainers.
    • Pray: Safety for MBB trainers — Pray for safety for our MBB trainers Ahamed and Yusuf. They are often in great danger as they refute the teachings of Islam. Their lives are at risk. 
    • Pray: Ruthless kidnappers — The kidnapping in Katsina State has increased. This is the location of the HBB conference earlier this year where 2000 people were trained in March. Previously this was just happening in the rural areas, but it is happening even in the city now. Those who are kidnapped are violently tortured and forced to get their family members to send funds to the kidnappers. We will not be able to return to follow-up the newly trained HBB leaders until there is more safety. 
    • Pray: Safety in Villages — People are living in fear because the attackers take people unaware. In the villages it is especially dangerous at night so people have sleepless nights. Local farmers struggle to care for their land because they are under siege and are vulnerable to attack while out in their fields. Several of the FFICM staff (Sam especially) come from small villages and have families living in this danger. 
    • Praise: Release — There was a Catholic priest kidnapped near where Comfort lives in Maidugri. He was released on Thursday July 8th! Praise God for his release
  • Prayer for our Ministry Team
    • Praise: Peter’s Ordination — This week Peter will complete his ordination training at his church. Pray that all goes smoothly with this training and the ordination process. We praise God for the MDiv degree that Peter recently finished and now his official ordination, which will give him more legitimacy in the churches there in Nigeria as he goes around preaching and teaching to many.
    • Pray: Mercy’s health — the Financial Director is sick and needs our prayer for healing. Please support her in your prayer for full recovery. 
    • Pray: Zainab’s daughter (Jessica) — Jessica has a fever. Pray that God brings her temperature down. 
    • Pray: Valentine’s Dissertation — Prayer for the balance of work, family, and school. Pray that he will successfully complete his dissertation for his program. 
    • Praise: Zainab’s baking evangelism ministry — Last year, she trained over 200 women through her small baking school! Zainab trains both Christians and Muslims in her school. During the courses, she evangelizes and disciples them using FFICM materials. This year she hopes to train 500 women, but lacks the funding to pay for the baking supplies. 
      • Pray: Funds for baking supplies — The cost of training 100 women is $110. The cost goes to cover the baking supplies for the classes and food to feed the students during the training. 
      • Praise: Donated Equipment — Zainab connected with an American missionary in Nigeria who donated access to equipment to host an evangelistic crusade (keyboard, generator, lights, amp and speakers) for a three-day baking school/evangelism event on July 29th-31st.  Please pray for funds for the baking supplies (flour, sugar, etc.) for this event. 

Ethiopia:

  • Peace in Ethiopia
    • Praise: Threat of War abeated — Egypt and Sudan had agreed to fight Ethiopia over the rights to water from the Nile. The Ethiopian government completed a dam on the Nile, where it begins in Ethiopia, for the purpose of generating energy. Egypt and Sudan just offered support of the dam as energy infrastructure in Ethiopia! Praise Jesus for this surprise turn of events!  
    • Pray: Tigray War – The government and the Tigray people went to war in November 2020 in Northern Ethiopia. The government troops recently withdrew from the Tigray region. The Tigray people groups are now fighting in a tribal civil war, those who supported the government troops vs. those who opposed them. 
      • The Tigray people are suffering because of lack of basic food necessities, exacerbated by the pandemic. There is no electricity, no water, no internet. Please pray for provision through NGOs and for a compassionate government response. 
  • Strategic Development
    • Praise: Possible Vehicle — Praise God for the funds that have been received. Please pray as we continue to work on negotiating details and working on paperwork to buy a vehicle being sold by the US Embassy. There have been some challenges in processing the paperwork with the government due to the fact that it was owned by the embassy.  
    • Pray: Tesfaye’s language learning — Tesfaye is already bi-lingual and speaks Amheric and Oromo. He is learning English to expand his capacity as a lead trainer. 
  • Post-Training Follow-up
    • Praise: Exponential Growth — The leaders in Bongo requested 300 Follow-up booklets. Bongo is an unreach area dominated by witchcraft. Pray for God’s mercy to move through the FFICM trainers and lead many to new life in Jesus Christ. 
  • New Believer Follow-up Training this week
    • Pray: Training 80 people in Jimma — This week the team (Eskinder and Tesfaye) will train 60-100 people in Jimma. Pray for those traveling to the event, for the ministry of the Holy Spirit to strengthen the believers, and for strength and wisdom for the FFICM leaders. 
  • Future Programs
    • Pray: Next week training for 200-400 students in Arba Minch — The team will train 200-400 university students in new believer follow-up. After the training the university students will go out for a 1 month evangelism and follow-up trip.
    • Pray: October Training Marathon — Rich and others from the US will travel to Ethiopia in October/November to assist with 5 weeks of new believer follow-up training, including the following:
      • Week 1) Training of Asella Evangelical Churches Fellowship and more than 14 denominations will participate.
      • Week 2) Training the Genet Church denomination in Ethiopia. FFICM has not previously partnered with the Genet Church denomination so this training opens new possibilities for growing impact! 
      • Week 3) Training in Sudan Khartoum – We will partner with Elias, an Ethiopian missionary in Sudan.
      • Week 4) Training of Women trainers at Ethiopia Kale Heywet Church – We will train 80 Ethiopian women in New Believer Follow-up. This team of women will become Trainers of Trainers. They have a plan for exponential growth as women are prepared to go out and train other women.
      • Week 5) The Head of the Ethiopia Kale Hayet Churchhas requested a training for Follow-up of new believers from a Muslim background! 
    • Pray: 12 Training Events — We have a total of at least 12 training events (each with 80-150 participants) planned for Ethiopia for July-December 2021.

USA:

  • Prayer for our Ministry Partners
    • Pray: Dara Searcy-Gardner, former FFICM staff — Dara continues to struggle with debilitating asthma. She asked us to pray that the medication (Xolair shots) would conquer the asthma. Pray for complete healing. 
    • Pray: David Moore, FFICM Director of Operations is currently working his MA in Nonprofit Management. He is now halfway through his course work and working on his next class Managing Organizational Diversity. Pray for wisdom as he works to balance work, classes, and family responsibilities and works to apply the things that he is learning in his classes to his role at FFICM.
    • Pray: New International Trainer — Praise God for the connection we’ve made with a new international trainer. We’re not sharing her name yet out of respect for her transition from her current role as Youth Pastor. Pray for a smooth transition to the FFICM team over the next several months. Pray for her efforts to raise funds and develop committed prayer partners as a missionary working with FFICM. 
    • Pray: David Moore’s mother-in-law Donna Dalton’s back surgery seemed to be very helpful at first and healing was going well. But infection set in over a week ago. They tried getting her on antibiotics, but that didn’t work. She went back in for a check up due to increasing pain, and the doctors were very concerned. They immediately admitted her to the hospital and began working on tackling the issue. They did MRI and determined that surgery was needed right away and that she had two different kinds of staph infections. They scheduled surgery for the next day (Saturday). During surgery they didn’t see any indication that the infection had gotten into the hardware they had put into her back in the previous surgery so that is good. They cleaned things out as best they could. She is now having a bad lymph node swelling and pain reaction to the current antibiotics, so they have an infectious disease specialist culturing for the right kind of antibiotics to give her. They have determined that the infection has gotten into her bones, so she will need to be on antibiotics for at least a year. Please pray for healing, peace, wisdom and patience.
      • Update: His mother in law is doing well. She is home from the hospital and the wound is healing up nice. She’s been able to walk around a bit. 
    • Pray: Rick Cordell — Prayer that the process of getting his green card would go smoothly. 
  • Pray for Strategic Development
    • Praise: New Development Director– Jerel Skeith!! — Praise Jesus, we hired a Development Director who will join our team full-time on August 1st. We are incredibly grateful to God for this strategic relationship and the fruit which will come from this partnership. 
    • Pray: Wisdom regarding church status — Pray for wisdom as FFICM applies for church status here in the US. Most large mission organizations have applied for and been granted church status in the US. This would allow us to be able to have all of our staff receive the ministerial housing allowance and would have other tax and finance benefits for us as an organization. 
    • Praise: U.S. based-training in July/August— We began training the 12 people who have committed to attend the upcoming virtual training via Zoom! We are recruiting ministry partners interested in serving as both part-time and full-time trainers with FFICM from the US. Pray for successful training, encouragement for our US-ministry partners, and guidance by the Holy Spirit regarding long-term impact from this training. 
      • Eskinder taught the course last week! Praise God for the ability to connect virtually with our ministry partners in this way! 
    • Pray: New Church partnerships — We are looking to share at several other churches here in the Oregon/Washington area as well as on the East Coast this summer. Pray for wisdom as we work to schedule these speaking opportunities to both share about the amazing things we are seeing God do, as well as share about the opportunities we have for the future. (Let us know if your church or small group would be interested in having someone from our team share in your group.)
Elle WisotPraise and Prayer ~ July 19, 2021