We have a mission team from Eugene, Oregon in Ethiopia right now, primarily serving children through VBS in Debra Zeit and in Addis Ababa. Their leader, youth pastor Jeff Starr, sent us a great report!
We finished the two day VBS in Bole Bulbula yesterday and the team did an outstanding job leading the VBS all by themselves – I am so proud of them. It was very difficult at times as we battled spiritual darkness but they pressed through with outstanding attitudes and always encouraging one another. I believe they have all grown tremendously.
We had about 75 kids the first day and they brought many friends the second day so our numbers increased to 120+. Michael and Monty taught a lesson on sharing the love of Jesus with others and we made bracelets that tell the Gospel story. Amaris had them come up to the front and share with the group what each bead represented and how they would share the Gospel with their friends. The older group made two bracelets, one for themselves and one to share with a friend.
After lunch we sang songs of worship with the kids. I was outside the church compound while they were singing and I could hear them all the way down the street! They especially loved to sing ‘Father Abraham’ – every time we would finish they would chant in Amharic for more so we sang it over and over. As we did this we could feel the spiritual heaviness lift. It was a very powerful time. The team lead the children in worship, skits, amazing teachings about Joseph and the Great Commission, awesome arts and crafts and dynamic games, bringing hope and the love of God to them. It was an outstanding time.
After Michael shared about being fishers of men for Jesus, one young boy said, “I want to be a missionary like these people!” Michael had asked prior to this how many of them would like to serve Jesus to disciple others (he used much simpler words) and almost every single student raised their hand and prayed with him to be Jesus’ fishers of men. Every team member did an outstanding job leading the VBS. I am so proud of these young and powerful leaders for God.
Please continue to pray. Today is a day of rest after six straight days of intense ministry. Tomorrow we travel to Adama which is south of Addis about 2 hours and we will work at the Widows and Orphans Home helping with the children and blessing the widows. Friday we will be working in an area where the street kids are and also with Hope ministry helping with their lunch program and sharing the Gospel through our skits. Saturday we will be in Korah, which is the community in the city dump.
In God’s most amazing and awesome loving ways,
Jeff and the Christ’s Center Ethiopia Team of Champions