EMS Urgent Prayer Needs and Financial Appeal

by Rev. Simon Yako | For more than three decades, the education of EMS Missionaries Children became a major issue to the Ministry. In the early sixties, an EMS Children School was built in Wushishi, Niger State and later in Miango Plateau State, but could not survive due to poor funding.

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EMS URGENT PRAYER NEEDS AND FINANCIAL APPEAL

REAL SITUATION OF OUR MISSIONARIES THAT ARE SERVING IN THESE VERSATILE AREAS

EMS of ECWA which is one of the largest indigenous mission agencies in Africa started when the then Sudan Interior Mission (SIM) now Serving in Missions (SIM) saw the need of involving Nigerian indigenes in planting churches across the country and beyond. Therefore, in 1948 a movement began by the name African Missionary Society (AMS) and after ECWA was registered, the name AMS was changed to EMS in 1964.

EMS of ECWA is a faith-based agency as well as a non-profit organization. Presently, EMS has about 1800 missionary couples that are serving in different location in Nigeria and beyond.

SECURITY CHALLENGE

Though many of our EMS missionaries are facing enormous security challenges of attacks from Fulani herdsmen, Boko Haram, Bandits and Abductors, yet, they are willing to serve until Jesus takes them home to be with Him; this is at the detriment of their lives.

HEALTH CHALLENGES

Many of our EMS missionaries are facing health challenges of different types because of the nature of the areas they are Many are serving where there is no good drinking water. Recently, many of our missionaries were examined and it was discovered that many have Hepatitis and from 2018, the Head Office spent over 9.1 million Naira on medical treatment alone. We have also lost 5 missionaries in the last 2 years as a result of that.

BRIEF HISTORY OF MISSION/FIELD SCHOOLS

For more than three decades, the education of EMS Missionaries Children became a major issue to the Ministry. In the early sixties, an EMS Children School was built in Wushishi, Niger State and later in Miango Plateau State, but could not survive due to poor funding.

As years passed by, missionaries became more concerned about the plight of their children’s education, and this resulted to the attrition of many missionaries. In 1996, EMS took the challenge to open the EMS Children School in Jos, EMS Children School Lakwame, EMS Children School Kufana, trusting God to help expand the scope, and to reduce the risk of travelling long distances with the insecurity challenge from Boko Haram, Fulani Herdsmen etc. For there would be no better successors of the missionaries in future than their own children. Praise God that despite the field challenges the missionaries are still in their duty post.

Currently, EMS Children School Jos has about 398 pupils with 40 orphans. It was started to meet the educational need of children of missionaries who are working in Central Region of Nigeria where we have had a lot of insurgency attacks in areas where our missionaries are serving.

EMS Children School Lakwame has about 156 children with 16 orphans. This was started to meet educational need of children of missionaries who are working in the Eastern part of Nigeria where we have the activities of the Boko Haram going on.

EMS Children School Kufana has about 90 pupils with 8 orphans. The school was also started to meet the educational needs of our missionary children whose parents are serving in the core-north of Nigeria where we have a lot of persecution.

EMS Urgent Prayer Needs and Financial AppealThe ongoing Jos campus EMS children school dining hall building project
Therefore, as you pray, we are also appealing for financial support towards the following projects:

  1. For God to provide funds to complete the dining hall building project costing N5, 000,000(N5M) Naira or $14,000 before the rains
  2. To help pay outstanding medical bills of our missionaries costing N 5m to 6m or $14,000 yearly
  3. To help in buying more grains to feed the EMS missionary children in the three schools costing N9m or $25,000
  4. To dig more wells in our mission fields costing N50 to 100 thousand naira per well or $ 300 to 400

Rev. Simon Yako is the Director of EMS of ECWA. He was the Foreign Missions Coordinator
for EMS OF ECWA for almost 31 years beginning in July 1988 in Jos, Plateau Sate Nigeria. Rev. Yako received his Bachelor’s degree in Missions in 1992 and M.A in Missions and Evangelism in 1995 from ECWA Seminary Jos.



Weekly Spiritual Digest: Who is the God of this World?

“The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Messiah, and he will reign for ever and ever.” Rev. 11:15b

Gen. 1:1, John 1:3 and Col. 1:16 confirm that God, through Jesus Christ created the world and everything in it – the angels, Satan, demons, human beings, etc. Every creature does God’s will – yes, even Satan. At creation, God gave Adam and Eve the responsibility to rule over the earth and everything in it. Satan mischievously deceived Eve and brought Adam and Eve under his control thereby assuming the rulership of this world.

In Luke 4:6 Satan asked Jesus to worship him and he will give him the whole world since it has been given to him. Jesus did not call him out as a liar. Three times in John 12:31, 14:30 and 16:11 Jesus affirmed that Satan is the ruler of this world. Paul declared same in 2 Corinthian. 4:4. God owns the world, but Satan is the ruler currently as evidenced by the prevalence of sin. One encouraging note is that Satan cannot do anything outside what God allows him to do. God has boundaries for him as Job’s story confirms. We do not need to lose faith due to Satan’s misrule. The world is waiting for the day when it will be finally declared: “The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Messiah, and he will reign for ever and ever.” Rev. 11:15b. Why not start the celebration now?

Rev. Sunday BwanhotRev. Sunday Bwanhot is EMS/SIM Missionary. He serves as Team leader of SIM Culture Connexions; Pastors of ECWA Chicago.



Thank you and Merry Christmas!

Through worship, prayer, civil conversation and service, ECWA members work hard to transform the community they live in to a God loving community.

First and foremost, we express our heartfelt appreciation to all readers of ECWA USA Communicator and ECWA USA Blog. It was with the mere co-operation, enthusiasm, and spirit of people like you we could make ECWA USA Communicator and ECWA USA Blog a grand success. It’s been a wonderful year for us here at ECWA USA. We have so many things to be Thankful to the Lord for. We personally thank you our readers for your support. Your great work for the Lord will be rewarded in Heaven.

ECWA USA is committed to publishing outstanding scholarly and religious manuscripts in all areas of Christian Life. This is just a quick reminder that as the year end, we can always use a little contribution from you to support our mission……proclaiming the Good News of our Lord Jesus Christ. No amount is too small or too big. Please navigate to our website and click on the Donate button on the upper right of your device. Mobile users may need to touch their Menu (three lines on the upper right of their device) to see the Donate button.

We at ECWA USA thank you from the bottom of our heart for your support. Have a blessed Christmas and a Happy New Year!



Why Plant Churches in the USA?

by Rev. Joseph Ezeigbo M.Div, Th.M | The Psalmist urges us to declare his glory among the nations, his marvelous deeds among all peoples. Ps.96:3

America, with her approximately 350 million people, has the third largest population of any nation in the world. Although this number represents only about 4.28% of the entire world population, it comprises the highest number of the largest ethnic and groups of people in the world. Further, America has the highest number of growing immigrant population in the world, thus making it the greatest mission field in the world. These are not new facts. Missiologists established these statistics more than a quarter of a century ago.

Immigrants accounted for 4.7% of US population in 1970 and rising to 6.2% in 1980 and up to 12.5% in 2009. Since 2000 America absorbs at least 1 million immigrants annually. (Note that this excludes undocumented immigrants).

Jesus, the Lord of the harvest, charged His disciples thus saying, Do you not say, ’Four months more and then the harvest?’ I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields. They are ripe for harvest (Jn. 4:34). In His compassion for a desperate and distressed world, He urged them (us— ECWAUSA) … The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into his harvest field Matt. 9:37-38.

POLARIZATION OF THE GOSPEL
Though record indicates that about 30,000 Churches shut their doors between 2006 to 2012; a study reported by the Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion states that there has been a general increase in the number of Churches in the US since 1998. The National Congregations Study (NCS) conducted between 2006 and 2012 also indicates an increase from about 336,000 congregations in 1998 to about 414,000 in 2006 and perhaps leveled off at 338,00 in 2012. The Southern Baptist Church(SBC); America’s largest denomination, has about 50,000 congregations.

However, consider that these overall statistics include those denominations that have become apostate (denying the five Cardinal doctrines of the Bible), including the inspiration of the Bible and authority of the Scriptures and ordination of openly gay and homosexual individuals.

In Africa in general and Nigeria in particular, the situation is more bemoanable. The seemingly out of control upsurge of the Neo-Pentecostal/Charismatic movement has become a reproach to the cause Christianity in Nigeria. Fake miracles, Occult practices, False and demonic doctrines, bogus titles by “ministers of God” (MOGs), excessive lavish lifestyles and materialism etc. (Reading material, The Seduction of the Nigerian Church by Gary Maxey and Peter Ozodo and The Modern Theology versus Biblical Theology by an ECWA pastor, Daniel Sopuru). According to Pew Research, Nigeria is the second most religious country in the world.

Apostle Paul stated the integrity that governed his ministry and should be the goal of every ministry in these words, “unlike so many we do not peddle the word of God for profit. On the contrary, in Christ, we speak with sincerity, like men sent from God” “Therefore, since through God’s mercy we have received this ministry, we do not lose heart. Rather we have renounced secret and shameful ways; we do not use deception, nor do we distort the word of God. On the contrary, by setting forth the truth plainly, we commend ourselves to every man’s conscience in the sight of God” (2 Cor. 2:17;4:1-3).

POST-MODERNISM (POST-CHRISTIAN) ERA
For those who canvass in Philosophy, this is an upgrade from the Age of the Enlightenment of 17th and 18th Centuries. Author and pastor David Roper gives the following description of this period: we are living in what many have described as a Post-Christian era. That doesn’t mean there are no longer many Christians around; there may in fact be more true believers than ever before. ‘Post–Christian’ era means that Christian faith no longer plays a role in shaping public opinion and policy. Christian assumptions and commitments once widely held no longer have the presence and impact they once had.

A new hallmark of this period is characterized by the rise the “Nones.” The “Nones” are the new segment of the American population who identify themselves as religiously unaffiliated. And they are growing by the numbers. According to a study, in the 1950s, around 3% of Americans checked the “None” box when asked about their religious affiliation. That number has grown especially in the last decade to 20%. This group, according to Pew Research Center, makes up for about 23% of US adult population. About 33% of Millennial’s population fall into this category. In the last five years, this population grew from 15% to 20%.

PORTRAY THE BEAUTY OF THE GOSPEL AND TRUE CHRISTIANITY
Paul’s admonition to his protégé, Titus behooves us. …that in every way they will make the teaching about God our Savior attractive (NIV) Tit. 2:10. The word attractive adorn (NKJV) kosmeo in Greek. The idea is to beautify or make beautiful in order to draw attention. The Gospel has become the object of ridicule and caricature in many quarters today for the reasons mentioned above especially when considering the state of the Church in both the United States and Nigeria. Judging by population and size ratio, Nigeria has the largest number of Churches and Christian population of any country in the world. United States and Nigeria are the two countries with the highest number of Church attendance population in the world.

May we aspire to spread the aroma of Christ as we are urged for we are to God the aroma of Christ.

PROPAGATION OF THE GOSPEL
The Psalmist urges declare his glory among the nations, his marvelous deeds among all peoples Ps.96:3. The Great Commission is preceded by Christ’s declaration of His possession of All authority in heaven and on earth (Matt.28:18) Contextually, therefore when we obey the Great Commission, we march under that divine authority and the promise of His company and abiding presence (vss.19-20). Also, the blessing of those who proclaim the God news would be abundantly ours (Isa.52:7).

Rev. Joseph EzeigboRev. Joseph Okechukwu Ezeigbo is a Bible teacher for the weekly Bible study at ECWA Maryland. He is also a part of the National Day of Prayer and the International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted.



Biblical Mandate for Church Planting

by Rev. Joseph Ezeigbo M.Div, Th.M |It is through the Church that Christ intends to reign on earth, because the church is the visible manifestation of His mystical body . Eph.1:22-23. Col.1:18 (image: Grow Baby Grow, R. James Shupp).

The Biblical mandate for Church planting is inextricably interwoven with the Great Commission. This burden was uppermost in the Lord’s heart that it is repeated in all the four Gospels and in Acts.

The Church is not an afterthought but has been in the mind of God since eternity. Eph.1:4,;3:2-6. For this purpose we shall concentrate on Matthew 28:18-20. The apostles carried out this mandate immediately following the descent of the Holy Spirit in Acts1:5-8,2:41-47. The mandate spells out what should be the stance of the church.  “ A church on the go”. The Church is a movement not a monument. Not just a movement, but a missionary movement. Matt.28:19-20; Acts 1:8.

It is a transformational movement ( make disciples of the nations) Matt.28:19

It is an educational/teaching movement. ( teaching them…) Matt.28:20.

Greater Purpose

There is yet a greater purpose for the mandate to plant churches.

  1. To declare the praises of Christ for our salvation 1 Pet.2:9
  2. To declare His glory through a life of holiness Eph.1:4,6;1 Pet.2:10-12.
  3. It is through the Church that Christ intends to reign on earth, because the church is the visible manifestation of His mystical body . Eph.1:22-23. Col.1:18.
  4. The Church is also the fullness of her Head (Christ) Eph.1:22-23.
  5. It is through the Church that Christ declares His reconciliation with mankind and between mankind. Eph.2:11-22; Col.2:18-22.
  6. It is the Church that makes manifest the mystery of the ages and through which the manifold wisdom of God is declared to the kingdom of darkness. Eph.3:9-10.
  7. The Church is God’s designated change-agent in the world Acts 17:6;2 Cor.2:14-16.( I recommend Christian Counter Culture, A Message of the Sermon on the Mount. (Inter-Varsity Press) by John Stott. Kingdom Disciples ( Moody Publishers) by Tony Evans.

First Century Examples

a. The early Christians obeyed this mandate Acts 8:4-7;11:19-21.

b. The apostle Paul carried out this mandate as he traveled and evangelized the Mediterranean world.Acts 14:21-23;16-20;1 Tim.1:3;Tit.1:5.

c. The Body of Christ is not a vague, amorphous visualization or imagination, but a tangible reality represented by a local church.

Rev. Joseph EzeigboRev. Joseph Okechukwu Ezeigbo is a Bible teacher for the weekly Bible study at ECWA Maryland. He is also a part of the National Day of Prayer and the International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted.



Bingham University Karu

Ag. Vice Chancellor, Prof. William B. Qurix, OFR, FNIA | Undisputed events testify, from those who conceived, designed, developed and even those that are operating Bingham University that God Himself is solidly building Bingham University. This is even more so as movement to …

Visit Bingham University website
Download Bingham University – Karu – Nasarawa State Newsletter vol.1 No. 6 2nd July 2018
Download Bingham University Karu Information Bulletin

Quality, Moral Education
1. Introduction

Bingham University, established by the Evangelical Church Winning All (ECWA) in 2005 was conceived on the ruins of public universities in Nigeria. Its founding fathers, visionaries within the various Executive Councils, as well academics of ECWA extraction, looked back to the golden age of mission education with its focus, purposefulness, and high quality. It was the desire for meeting the soaring need for not only quality, secular education, but education that recognizes and integrates the moral and spiritual values on which the Christian faith is founded which fueled its establishment. Recognizing the importance of the technological revolution of the 19th and 20th centuries, Bingham University is determined to build a technology-driven institution of the 21st century.

The University has had four (4) Vice Chancellors since inception. The Pioneer Vice Chancellor was Professor Aaron Gana of blessed memory from 2006 to 2007. He was succeeded by Professor Felix I. Anjorin also of blessed memory, from 2007 to 2013 . The third Vice Chancellor was Professor Leonard KursimFwa from 2013 to 2017, while the fourth Vice Chancellor is Professor William Barnabas Qurix, OFR 2018 onward.

2. Vision, Mission, Core values and Goal
The vision of Bingham University, Karu is to transform Nigeria into knowledge and skills – driven society (Prov. 29:18).
Our mission for accomplishing the vision is to produce men and women who will catalyze the revolution in self-reliance at all levels of a Godly society (1 Cor. 2:12-12).
TBingham University, Karuhe core values for Bingham University, Karu are Christ-contentedness, people-orientation, excellence, purpose-driven life and adaptability to a changing world (Rom. 12:2-3).

Bingham University’s goal is to produce total men and women equipped to affect their generation positively for Jesus Christ, serving humanity in ways that are glorifying to God and dignifying to humanity (Prov. 29:18).  Our motto is, ‘mission for service’ (Mark 10:45). The motto emphasizes the type of knowledge and skills, which the university impact on its students. The ultimate goal is to produce graduates who would see themselves as a task force out to serve the society.

3. Commencement of Academic Programs:  Temporary to Permanent Site
Academic programs of Bingham University began in May 2006 at the Jos ECWA Theological Seminary temporary site and moved to its present permanent site two years after, precisely in March 2008 to Karu – Nasarawa State – Nigeria at the outskirts of Abuja, the Federal Capital City.  Indeed the feat of moving to the permanent Principal Officers of Bingham University (from Left – Right: Liberian Pastor J.O. Aronsanyin. Bursar James Bako, Registrar Mr. S.S. Sule and Vice Chancellor Prof. Felix I. Anjorin) in a procession during the University’s convocationsite at such a brief moment of the University’s commencement is uncommon in the history of Nigerian Universities where many first and second generation government funded universities in the country have not fully moved to their permanent sites after decades of their existence.  To the glory of God, the virgin land of October 2006 with no single building has now been transformed into a beehive of academic, professorial and Christian activities, courtesy of successive ECWA leadership, members and friends of Bingham University, Karu.

4. Academic Programs and Accreditation
As with all other Nigerian Universities, Bingham University’s admissions are through the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) combined with a post-UTME screening exercise.

The University started with a faculty of Science and Technology (with programs in Biochemistry, Computer Science and later Microbiology and Industrial Chemistry), Faculty of Humanities, Social and Management Sciences (with programs in Accounting, Business Administration, Economics, English Language, Mass Communication, Political Science and Sociology) and the College of Health Sciences (with programs in Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery – MBBS, and later Human Anatomy and Physiology).

Bingham University, E-LibraryEnglish Language, Computer Science, Business Administration, Biochemistry, Accounting have full accreditation, while others have interim accreditation.

It is worthy of note, that Bingham University, Karu is unique in the history of tertiary education in Nigeria as one of the few Universities to begin with a College of Health Sciences from inception gaining accreditation for MB,BS program at pre-clinical and first clinical accreditation levels from the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria (MDCN). Clinical studies have also commenced at Bingham University Teaching Hospital, Jos where students are at various advanced stages of their training.  The Accounting program also has full accreditation by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN), exempting graduates of the Bingham University from the first five of seven parts of the ICAN certification examination, among other benefits. The advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria (APCON) has also given full professional accreditation to Bingham University Mass Communication programme.

Bingham University Circulation Desk5. Information and Communication Centre (ICT)
ICT development of the Students has a strategic focus in Bingham University. The University has in place a state of the art ICT centre with a student portal for integrated services developed and maintained by the versatile staff of the University’s Computer Science Department who offers uninterrupted service for the learning comfort of our students.

Bingham University Electronic Library6. Library Facilities
The University Library works in conjunction with the ICT Centre to provide the Electronic Library Services, giving the students and other staff users access to a wide range of academic resources, including the robust NUC virtual library.
Bingham University Management is constantly working in collaboration with her partners and friends at home and abroad to ensure the library is up to date at all times.

7. Students’ Welfare
From an initial intake of 124 students in May 2006, the University currently has a student population of about 2000 from all parts of Nigeria and beyond, pursuing their various programs.  All students are resident on the campus.  The University’s Management has out-sourced controlled catering services to both students and staff at affordable cost.  There are also modest sports and recreational facilities on campus for the physical fitness of students and staff.

The University has a comprehensive health centre at Karu that provides medical services to students and staff as well as the surrounding communities.  Currently, the centre provides immunization services to children in addition to family planning services to women from the surrounding villages as part of the institution’s corporate responsibility to its host community and those around.

8. Science Laboratory
The University host has equipped science laboratories instruction of students offering natural and applied science courses.

9. Chaplaincy
Bingham University runs a 24 hour Chaplaincy service with three Chaplains assisted by some lecturers to cater for the spiritual needs of the students.  A compulsory Bible Study Course holds for two hours every week from 100 to 300 level.  A pass in this course is a pre-requisite for graduating from Bingham University.  There are also compulsory Chapel hours on Mondays, Wednesdays, Sundays and most Saturdays.  Students are also distributed into mentorship groups under dedicated staff to provide sound Christian mentoring.

Students are also encouraged and supported to build prayer cells with their roommates.  In addition, the Chaplains assisted by some staff conduct room-to-room evangelism once in a week to strengthen the faith of students as well as helping those who have not made their faith to do so in the Lord Jesus Christ.

10. Students’ Discipline
The University operates strict disciplinary tenets which are contained in the institution’s student handbook.  It prescribes behaviour and dress codes acceptable to the University and the consequences of committing infractions against the regulations,  In all, taken in conjunction with the efforts of the Chaplaincy, the regulations help not only to improve behaviour of students to become more disciplined but also to help them grow to be more like Christ.
Violations are met with appropriate sanctions always after a fair hearing is given to the alleged offender.

Main Entrance Gate of the Bingham University, Karu11. Security
The University appreciates God for being its security.  Efforts have however been made to put in place a structured security system with measures to secure life and property on the campus. A Police station is under construction on the campus.
Plans are already going on to build a block fence around the University mass of land 259.88 hectares to further enhance security.

12. Success Story
Bingham University Karu within six years of its commencement of academic activities has graduated three sets of students who excelled in their various academic courses of studies.  The University is most grateful to God for turning out graduates, men and women who have not only done well academically, but have grown both Pro‐Chancellor/Chairman of Bingham University Gen. Martin Luther Agwai, Chairman Board of Trustees Ass. Prof. Basil Nwosu and Etsu Karu/Chancellor of the University Pharm. Luka Panya Baba in a processionphysically and spiritually as children of God who will continue to hold integrity as their watch word in the midst of a perverse society. We expect them to shine for God in their future endeavours by God’s grace.
The University also held its first convocation ceremony in February 2012 where certificates were presented to the graduates.  The occasion also featured the presentation of honorary degrees to some distinguished Nigerians whose exemplary godly life styles have been a model to the younger generation.

13. Conclusion
The evolution of private Universities in Nigeria including Bingham University, Karu has contributed immensely to the country’s human capital development.  The efforts of private Universities, especially Christian faith-based Universities in providing quality education in the face of over-whelming national challenges should attract the Federal and State Government support through the provision of grants from the Education Tax Fund to motivate private Universities to continue to complement government’s human capital development efforts in the country

CONTACT US – http://www.binghamuni.edu.ng/index.php


The Vice Chancellor,
Bingham University,
P.M.B 005,
KM 26 Abuja-Keffi Expressway Kodope,
Karu, Nasarawa State.
E-mail: vc@binghamuni.edu.ng


The Registrar,
Bingham University,
P.M.B 005,
KM 26 Abuja-Keffi Expressway Kodope,
Karu, Nasarawa State.
E-mail: registrar@binghamuni.edu.ng


The Public Relations Officer,
Bingham University,
P.M.B 005,
KM 26 Abuja-Keffi Expressway Kodope,
Karu, Nasarawa State.
E-mail: pro@binghamuni.edu.ng


For further inquiry:
E-mail: webmaster@binghamuni.edu.ng



Jeff Woodke’s wife releases third video plea for news of her husband

| Jeff Woodke had served in Niger for more than 29 years, providing food, water and other services to nomadic people. (Photo: You Tube)

The wife of an American missionary abducted 20 months ago in Africa’s Sahel region has put out a new video pleading for his safe return.

In the 4’10’’ footage released on Tuesday (26 June), in French, Els Woodke reiterated her despair and desire to be in touch with her husband’s kidnappers.

Jeff Woodke, who was working for Jeunesse en Mission Entraide et Développement, a branch of the US-based Youth With a Mission, was abducted by unknown assailants late in the evening of Friday 14 October, 2016, from the town of Abalak in northern Niger.

For 20 months, there has been no news of Woodke, but on 4 June, Niger’s president, Mahamadou Issoufou, told TV channel France24 that both Woodke and a German aid worker kidnapped in April this year are alive.

It was the first proof of life since their kidnapping.

Just a day before, on 3 June, at the end of the Muslim fasting period of Ramadan, a coalition of jihadist groups operating in Sahel, Jama’at Nasr al-Islam wal Muslimin (the ‘Group Supporting Islam and Muslims’), affiliated to Al-Qaeda, released a video showing footage of two women being held hostage in the Sahara: the French aid worker Sophie Pétronin, abducted in Mali’s northern town of Gao in December 2016, and the Colombian nun Gloria Argoti, kidnapped on 7 February 2017 from her convent in Karangasso, southern Mali.

In the video, Pétronin was allowed to listen to a telephone call from her son and to send a message back to him, while Sr. Argoti was also permitted to give a message.

“It was a humane and merciful act during Ramadan to allow these hostages to communicate with their families and friends,” said Els Woodke in her latest of three videos since her husband’s kidnapping. “But my husband Jeff has been held for a very long time and I have received no word from those who are holding him.”

She recalled that in July last year the kidnappers released a video showing six foreign hostages detained in the Sahara, but that her husband was not featured, nor mentioned, though the families were told to contact the kidnappers directly.

“So now I want to address myself to those who gave that instruction,” she said. “I want to talk to you. I am ready to negotiate the safe return of my husband. I only want Jeff to come home. If you are not able to negotiate yet, please allow Jeff to send his family a message, just as you have done with these other hostages.”

Jeff, in his 50s, had served in Niger for 29 years, providing food, water and other services to the Tamasheq, Fulani and other people groups.

In recognition of his commitment, he received the United Nations Sasakawa Award for Disaster Reduction in 2009, given to individuals or institutions that have advocated for the reduction of disaster risks in their communities, or taken active steps to prevent disasters.



Bingham University: Transform a person into Knowledge and skills driven, Christ centered Individual

Ag. Vice Chancellor, Prof. William B. Qurix, OFR, FNIA | Undisputed events testify, from those who conceived, designed, developed and even those that are operating Bingham University that God Himself is solidly building Bingham University. This is even more so as movement to …

Visit Bingham University website | Download Bingham University – Karu – Nasarawa State Newsletter vol.1 No. 6 2nd July 2018

Quality, Moral Tertiary Education In Nigeria
1. Preamble
Bingham University, established by the Evangelical Church Winning All (ECWA) in 2005 was conceived on the ruins of public universities in Nigeria.  As the name implies, the University was named after one of the trio of pioneer Sudan Interior Missionaries, Roland Victor Bingham whose vision along with those of other founding fathers desired to produce committed Christians in our institutions, including the University through which Christ-centred leaders would emerge.   The founding fathers intend to meet the soaring need for not only quality secular tertiary education but education that recognises and integrates moral and spiritual values in the face of degenerating social decadence in Nigerian University campuses.

2. Vision, Mission, Core values and Goal
The vision of Bingham University, Karu is to transform Nigeria into knowledge and skills – driven society (Prov. 29:18).
Our mission for accomplishing the vision is to produce men and women who will catalyze the revolution in self-reliance at all levels of a Godly society (1 Cor. 2:12-12).
TBingham University, Karuhe core values for Bingham University, Karu are Christ-centeredness, people-orientation, excellence, purpose -driven life and adaptability to a changing world (Rom. 12:2-3).
Bingham University’s goal is to produce total men and women equipped to affect their generation positively for Jesus Christ, serving humanity in ways that are glorifying to God and dignifying to humanity (Prov. 29:18).  Our motto is, ‘mission for service’.

3. Commencement of Academic Programs:  Temporary to Permanent Site
Academic programs of Bingham University began in May 2006 at the Jos ECWA Theological Seminary temporary site and moved to its present permanent site two years after, precisely in March 2008 to Karu – Nasarawa State – Nigeria at the outskirts of Abuja, the Federal Capital City.  Indeed the feat of moving to the permanent Principal Officers of Bingham University (from Left – Right: Liberian Pastor J.O. Aronsanyin. Bursar James Bako, Registrar Mr. S.S. Sule and Vice Chancellor Prof. Felix I. Anjorin) in a procession during the University’s convocationsite at such a brief moment of the University’s commencement is uncommon in the history of Nigerian Universities where many first and second generation government funded universities in the country have not fully moved to their permanent sites after decades of their existence.  To the glory of God, the virgin land of October 2006 with no single building has now been transformed into a beehive of academic, professorial and Christian activities, courtesy of successive ECWA leadership, members and friends of Bingham University, Karu.

4. Academic Programs and Accreditation
As with all other Nigerian Universities, Bingham University’s admissions are through the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) combined with a post-UTME screening exercise.
The University started with a faculty of Science and Technology (with programs in Biochemistry, Computer Science and later Microbiology and Industrial Chemistry), Faculty of Humanities, Social and Management Sciences (with programs in Accounting, Business Administration, Economics, English Language, Mass Communication, Political Science and Sociology) and the College of Health Sciences (with programs in Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery – MBBS, and later Human Anatomy and Physiology).

Bingham University, E-LibraryEnglish Language, Computer Science, Business Administration, Biochemistry, Accounting have full accreditation, while others have interim accreditation.
It is worthy of note, that Bingham University, Karu is unique in the history of tertiary education in Nigeria as one of the few Universities to begin with a College of Health Sciences from inception gaining accreditation for MB,BS program at pre-clinical and first clinical accreditation levels from the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria (MDCN). Clinical studies have also commenced at Bingham University Teaching Hospital, Jos where students are at various advanced stages of their training.  The Accounting program also has full accreditation by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN), exempting graduates of the Bingham University from the first five of seven parts of the ICAN certification examination, among other benefits. The advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria (APCON) has also given full professional accreditation to Bingham University Mass Communication programme.

Bingham University Circulation Desk5. Information and Communication Centre (ICT)
ICT development of the Students has a strategic focus in Bingham University. The University has in place a state of the art ICT centre with a student portal for integrated services developed and maintained by the versatile staff of the University’s Computer Science Department who offers uninterrupted service for the learning comfort of our students.

Bingham University Electronic Library6. Library Facilities
The University Library works in conjunction with the ICT Centre to provide the Electronic Library Services, giving the students and other staff users access to a wide range of academic resources, including the robust NUC virtual library.
Bingham University Management is constantly working in collaboration with her partners and friends at home and abroad to ensure the library is up to date at all times.

7. Students’ Welfare
From an initial intake of 124 students in May 2006, the University currently has a student population of about 2000 from all parts of Nigeria and beyond, pursuing their various programs.  All students are resident on the campus.  The University’s Management has out-sourced controlled catering services to both students and staff at affordable cost.  There are also modest sports and recreational facilities on campus for the physical fitness of students and staff.

The University has a comprehensive health centre at Karu that provides medical services to students and staff as well as the surrounding communities.  Currently, the centre provides immunization services to children in addition to family planning services to women from the surrounding villages as part of the institution’s corporate responsibility to its host community and those around.

8. Science Laboratory
The University host has equipped science laboratories instruction of students offering natural and applied science courses.

9. Chaplaincy
Bingham University runs a 24 hour Chaplaincy service with three Chaplains assisted by some lecturers to cater for the spiritual needs of the students.  A compulsory Bible Study Course holds for two hours every week from 100 to 300 level.  A pass in this course is a pre-requisite for graduating from Bingham University.  There are also compulsory Chapel hours on Mondays, Wednesdays, Sundays and most Saturdays.  Students are also distributed into mentorship groups under dedicated staff to provide sound Christian mentoring.

Students are also encouraged and supported to build prayer cells with their roommates.  In addition, the Chaplains assisted by some staff conduct room-to-room evangelism once in a week to strengthen the faith of students as well as helping those who have not made their faith to do so in the Lord Jesus Christ.

10. Students’ Discipline
The University operates strict disciplinary tenets which are contained in the institution’s student handbook.  It prescribes behaviour and dress codes acceptable to the University and the consequences of committing infractions against the regulations,  In all, taken in conjunction with the efforts of the Chaplaincy, the regulations help not only to improve behaviour of students to become more disciplined but also to help them grow to be more like Christ.
Violations are met with appropriate sanctions always after a fair hearing is given to the alleged offender.

Main Entrance Gate of the Bingham University, Karu11. Security
The University appreciates God for being its security.  Efforts have however been made to put in place a structured security system with measures to secure life and property on the campus. A Police station is under construction on the campus.
Plans are already going on to build a block fence around the University mass of land 259.88 hectares to further enhance security.

12. Success Story
Bingham University Karu within six years of its commencement of academic activities has graduated three sets of students who excelled in their various academic courses of studies.  The University is most grateful to God for turning out graduates, men and women who have not only done well academically, but have grown both Pro‐Chancellor/Chairman of Bingham University Gen. Martin Luther Agwai, Chairman Board of Trustees Ass. Prof. Basil Nwosu and Etsu Karu/Chancellor of the University Pharm. Luka Panya Baba in a processionphysically and spiritually as children of God who will continue to hold integrity as their watch word in the midst of a perverse society. We expect them to shine for God in their future endeavours by God’s grace.
The University also held its first convocation ceremony in February 2012 where certificates were presented to the graduates.  The occasion also featured the presentation of honorary degrees to some distinguished Nigerians whose exemplary godly life styles have been a model to the younger generation.

13. Conclusion
The evolution of private Universities in Nigeria including Bingham University, Karu has contributed immensely to the country’s human capital development.  The efforts of private Universities, especially Christian faith-based Universities in providing quality education in the face of over-whelming national challenges should attract the Federal and State Government support through the provision of grants from the Education Tax Fund to motivate private Universities to continue to complement government’s human capital development efforts in the country

CONTACT US – http://www.binghamuni.edu.ng/index.php


The Vice Chancellor,
Bingham University,
P.M.B 005,
KM 26 Abuja-Keffi Expressway Kodope,
Karu, Nasarawa State.
E-mail: vc@binghamuni.edu.ng


The Registrar,
Bingham University,
P.M.B 005,
KM 26 Abuja-Keffi Expressway Kodope,
Karu, Nasarawa State.
E-mail: registrar@binghamuni.edu.ng


The Public Relations Officer,
Bingham University,
P.M.B 005,
KM 26 Abuja-Keffi Expressway Kodope,
Karu, Nasarawa State.
E-mail: pro@binghamuni.edu.ng


For further inquiry:
E-mail: webmaster@binghamuni.edu.ng



Mission: Update from Rev. Dr. & Mrs. Dennis and Coletta Shelly, with Special Prayer Request

by Rev. Dr. & Mrs. Dennis Shelly | Hello from Kagoro, where we’re beginning to see some rains falling again. Thanks for your prayers and support.

One big challenge we’ve faced this past week is with my (Dennis’) health. I’m having atrial fibrillation, with a very irregular heartbeat, low blood pressure, and a low pulse. This began mid-last week, but caused my chest to be very tight during Sunday’s morning church service. Coletta then called our SIM mate here at Kagoro Seminary, Dr. Alexis Stokes. She came and conferred what Coletta had found. Monday morning we cancelled our classes and had our Seminary driver take us in our Rav4 to Abuja (about 4 hours away on some very bad roads) for testing at the Nizamiye (Turkish) Hospital to see one Turkish interventional cardiologist. I had blood work, an X-ray, one ECG and one Ecocardiogram done. He confirmed what Dr. Alexis and Coletta had seen. I’m now taking one anti-coagulant.

Our home mission, Fellowship International Mission (FIM), along with SIM in Jos and our home church, Calvary Church, Lancaster, PA, all fully support our plan to go home promptly to get more medical assistance. Here at the Seminary we still have one week of classes this week, and then a week of finals from May 9-16, before the semester ends on May 16. “Our” original plan was to stay at Kagoro for one month to oversee our final exams and correct them and our papers before coming to the US on June 11 for a one-month medical home assignment. Now “God’s” plan is leading us to go to the US over one month earlier.

So we’ve booked flights on Air France to fly from Abuja this coming Monday night, May 7 (at 11 pm Nigerian time, 5 pm EST), to Paris, then on to Atlanta, Georgia, before we end in Philadelphia, PA, on Tuesday evening, May 8 (at 6:44 pm EST, 11:44 pm Nigerian time). We’ll stay overnight with Coletta’s sister and brother-in-law, Dee and Mike Lindsey, in Philadelphia on Tuesday, before Dee will drive us to Lancaster on Wednesday, May 9. We already have an appointment for me to see a heart specialist next Friday, May 11.

Special Prayer Request
1. For us to be confident in God’s direction and comfort during these next days of travel to the US, changed schedules, and going through the process of seeing US doctors, etc., to get Dennis’ medical problems solved without any crises.
2. For good final days of classes this week and during final exams May 9-16.
3. God’s provision of more school fees for many students before final exams begin next week. Students can’t take exams unless their school fees are fully paid for.
4. For God’s continued protection over ETSK and various areas of Nigeria from clashes between Fulani cattle herdsmen and local villagers, as well as continued suicide bombings in northeastern Nigeria.
5. For God’s choice of another Ph.D. holder in Intercultural Studies (Missions) to join me as ETSK as we began a new M.A. in Missions program this past semester.
6. For God to enable Dwight and Amy to round up their ministries at Hillcrest School well and return to the US on June 8th. They still need a job for Dwight, housing, etc.
7. For Stephanie to be in good health and a good witness as she works at two Urgent Care Centers in Rohrerstown and Ephrata, PA.

Thanks for your part in the ministries here at ETSK, especially as you pray for us and our medical situation now. “God’s” plans and timing are definitely much different than “ours,” but “His” are “best.” We’ll have new lessons to learn as we move ahead and trust the Lord the next few weeks. We’ll keep in touch.

Rev. Dr. & Mrs. Dennis and Coletta Shelly

 

Rev. Dr. & Mrs. Dennis and Coletta Shelly serve as faculty at EWCA Theological Seminary in Ka-goro, Nigeria. Connect via dennisshelly@uuplus.net



ECWA New President: Rev. Dr. Stephen Panya Baba

by Friday Bako | The new ECWA President for the next 3three years is Rev. Stephen Panya Baba
The General Church Council of Evangelical Church Winning All (ECWA), has as of Tuesday April 10, 2018 elected Rev. Stephen Panya Baba to lead the church for the next three years. He will take over from Rev Jeremiah Gado who served 2 consecutive terms of 3 years in the office.
Before his election, he was the EMS Cross Boarder Mission President, as well as ECWA Television Coordinator.

Rev. Baba polled 138 votes in the election that brought him in, beating Rev. Bitrus Sarma, who got 95 votes and Rev. Solomon Elisha who got 21 votes.

He will be sworn-in in June, alongside other elected leaders; the Assistant General Secretary, Rev Alex Ibi; and the Treasurer, Dr. Kalu Mc. Umeh, who has been re-elected into office for another 3-year term.

Stephen is the son of the former ECWA President, Rev. Dr. Panya Dabo Baba who served as President from 1988.



Standing for Christ

by Hanne Herland | Jesus showed a remarkable empathy and kindness for the weak, the poor and the sick. We should follow his example in our everyday lives. (image, YouTube)

We live in an age where many question Christianity. It somehow has become fashionable to be an atheist. The mainstream media constantly focus on negative news about Christians. Believers in God are told that they are old-fashioned, outdated and simply out of touch with reality. And many young people struggle, as they don’t quite know how to approach this fervent disdain.

This is why it is more important than ever to educate yourself on how to defend the faith, how to rationally and spiritually explain the Christian belief to those who, out of ignorance, think that belief in God belongs to the past. Read The Culture War: How the West Lost its Greatness and get the tools. Remember that atheism is a faith like any other, the belief in “nothing” and the assortment that “the universe is empty.” None of them ever went out there to check, so how do they know there is no God, angels or devils out there? They assume based on faith. Atheism is a religion, they strongly believe that “God is dead” and mankind is the only source of light, which is impossible to prove empirically.

The question becomes who really is out of touch with reality, as several of the most important values in our culture come from Christianity and its ethics. Professor at Yale and Harvard, historian Robert R. Palmer has pointed out that it is simply impossible to exaggerate the importance of Christianity’s influence on the development of Western values. The whole foundation of our Western civilization lay precisely on the very values that stem from Christianity. Let me name a couple.

It was the profoundly Christian thought that introduced the principle of equality in the West, the revolutionary idea that each man, regardless of class, gender and race, has a unique value. The leading French atheist, Michel Houellebecq proclaims that he is convinced we would never have human rights without the originally Jewish-Christian hypothesis, the incredibly bold idea that man is created, formed in the likeness of God and therefore also sanctified. The ideal of equality would later in history be seen as a secular idea, and one of the cornerstones of secular society, yet there is no doubt about its religious origins.

As believers, the example of Jesus stands high above any other. As we examine his life, we see, for example, how he completely revolutionized the view on women. He freely engaged with them in a way that broke with the traditions at the time. The story of the Samaritan woman at the well serves as an example. Remember, as a Samaritan, she was a complete outsider to the Jewish community. Jews did not mingle much with them, and they were considered a disrespected sect due to the way they worshipped, which differed somehow from the Jewish traditions.

On many occasions, the revolutionary Jesus broke off from the socially acceptable and freely engaged in apologetic debates with all kinds of “outsiders.” His disciples were quite shocked to see him speak to the Samaritan woman, engaging in discussion, showing her profound love that made her a believer. She felt honored to have met a prophet and went and told everyone. Jesus was arguably “the first feminist”; he deeply respected women. He was often criticized by the religious communities for allowing a “bad woman” to wash his feet, stopped the throwing of stones and told the woman at the well to “Go and sin no more” (John 8:11b). He had the habit of saving people’s lives. By his example, he opened up profound freedoms that to this day permeate the Western culture.

Jesus showed a remarkable empathy and kindness for the weak, the poor and the sick. We should follow his example in our everyday lives. This was also a highly unusual approach, not distinguishing between rich and poor. He was born in a stable in opposition to the arrogant and selfishly rich and affluent, again a dramatic statement of the value of human life—regardless of class, social standing or ethnicity. The early Christians worked to relieve suffering, help the poor and so on. They taught humility and that all men were brothers. As we see, the Christian contribution brought revolutionary elements to Western values and taught that in the eyes of God all men are equal. What a wonderful Christian ideal this is in our culture.

Hanne Nabintu Herland, historian of religions and author of The Culture War. How the West Lost Its Greatness. Visit theherlandreport.com for more information.



Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

by Joshua and Joanna Bogunjoko, SIM International Director | In joyful obedience, SIM workers continue to respond to Jesus’ invitation to “Come, follow me!”
For unto us a Child is born,
Unto us a Son is given;
And the government will be upon His shoulder.
And His name will be called
Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6.

Come!
Entering the season of Christmas, I am reminded of the words of the hymn, “O come, let us adore Him” and “Come, and behold Him!”, referring to the newborn King. Jesus would later speak the word come when he said, “Come, follow me.”

The invitation to Come!, available to us every day, is all the more poignant during the season of Christmas. Shepherds and foreign magi came to worship the incarnated Christ Child upon his arrival into human history. Through the ages, believers from numerous ethnic groups and nations have continued coming to worship and adore.

But this invitation is not heard by everyone on earth. Many are living and dying today behind barriers to the gospel that silence and block the come! And so we go to the ends of the earth so that many more may come to worship Him.

In 2018, SIM will celebrate its 125th anniversary. Our purpose and vision remains constant. Even as I write, many living in darkness are responding to the Christmas invitation to “Come, adore Him!” In joyful obedience, SIM workers continue to respond to Jesus’ invitation to “Come, follow me!”.

Thank you for your prayers, gifts, support, friendship and service with, and alongside of, us, our family and SIM. Come, let us adore Him together!

Purpose & Mission

Convinced that no one should live and die without hearing God’s good news, we believe that He has called us to make disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ in communities where He is least known.

Therefore, compelled by God’s great love and empowered by the Holy Spirit…

  • We cross barriers to proclaim the crucified and risen Christ, expressing His love and compassion among those who live and die without Him
  • We make disciples who will trust and obey Jesus, and become part of Christ-centered churches
  • We work together with churches to fulfill God’s mission across cultures locally and globally
  • We facilitate the participation in cross-cultural ministry of those whom God is calling.

Vision

The vision of SIM is to see a witness to Christ’s love where He is least known, disciples of Jesus expressing God’s love in their communities, and Christ-centred churches among all peoples.

By faith we see…
in the world: A vibrant testimony to the gospel through character, word and action among communities where currently Jesus is least known. Followers of Jesus living out the gospel in unity and in the power of the Holy Spirit, making disciples who trust Him, obey him, and play a full part in church life. Churches serving their communities and reaching out with the gospel locally and globally.

in SIM: A community growing in faith, in obedience to Jesus, and in ministry competence. Workers crossing barriers with the gospel, being and making disciples of Jesus, expressing His love and compassion. Multi-ethnic and multi-skilled teams serving together in love and harmony. Courageous leaders investing in the development of others for life transforming ministries. Effective partnerships with Christ-centered churches and organizations facilitating the spread of the Gospel.

in eternity: The redeemed from all tribes, languages, peoples and nations worshiping the Living God.

 



ECWA USA History

by Sunday & Grace Bwanhot | ECWA formerly launched its foreign missions during the centennial celebrations in December 1993 when its own ‘three pioneer couples’:  Simon & Ruth Yako, Joshua and Joanna Bogunjoko, and Sunday & Grace Bwanhot were commissioned at the Jos township stadium.

ECWA grew out of SIM’s ministry (formally Sudan Interior Mission; Now: Serving In Missions). It began its work in Nigeria in December 1893 through the pioneering efforts of Rowland Bingham, Thomas Kent and Walter Gowans. The Church planted then was called SIM church but it was handed over to nationals in 1954. ECWA was registered in Nigeria as Evangelical Churches of West Africa on June 11, 1956. Later the name was amended to be: Evangelical Church of West Africa and now: Evangelical Church Winning All (ECWA).

With the exception of some EMS (Evangelical Missionary Society) missionaries working in some countries in West Africa and the few churches in the USA and Britain, ECWA has largely remained a Nigerian church. It is to be noted that EMS of ECWA is the single largest indigenous mission agency in Africa. Although ECWA, through its mission agency, EMS, has a foreign mission policy, the policy continues to remain in the back burner of ECWA.

Officially, ECWA formerly launched its foreign missions during the centennial celebrations in December 1993 when its own ‘three pioneer couples’:  Simon & Ruth Yako, Joshua and Joanna Bogunjoko, and Sunday & Grace Bwanhot were commissioned at the Jos township stadium. The Yakos proceeded to Togo (Now in Nigeria), the Bogunjoko’s to Niger (Now in USA) and the Bwanhots in the USA. God made the move in spite of ECWA’s non committal to global evangelization. While God was using Rev. James Gabis to initiate ECWA’s ministries in the UK, God worked also through individuals here in the US to establish the ministry. Currently Israel and Gambia are the latest mission fields where ECWA is engaged in church planting.

ECWA Church New York

Late Elder Francis (left) and Grace Dada (Right), ECWA NY

Late Elder Francis (left) & Grace Dada (Right), ECWA NY, 1987

This is the first ECWA Church to be planted in the US in 1987 through the inspiring work of Elder Francis Dada’s father in-law. The church uses a rented facility located at 966 Fulton Street, Brooklyn, NY. Attendance at its peak averaged 60 to 75 people. The biggest challenge of this church has been a lack of a resident pastor. They have had several people fill in for brief periods of time. There was a conflict that led to several leaving the church and till today the church is yet to recover from that. Attendance currently is about 10 people.

 

ECWA Church Maryland

ECWA Church MD

ECWA Church MD, 1997

This is the second ECWA church planted in the US in January 1997 and it is currently the largest of all our churches with attendance in the neighborhood of 75 or more. The church bought a property that is being used for worship services and is located at: 5526 Marlboro Pike, District Heights, MD 20747. Rev. George Adekeye has been the pastor of the church since its inception.

 

ECWA Church Chicago

ECWA Church Chicago, At Handover, Jan 7, 2007

ECWA Church Chicago, At Handover, 2007

This is the third ECWA church planted in the USA on June 1, 1997. The church has been meeting in the lower level of Uptown Baptist Church at 1011 W. Wilson Avenue, Chicago, IL 60640. Attendance is between 40 and 50 and members come from several different countries. On January 7, 2007 Rev. Dr. Isaac Laudarji took over as the pastor from Rev. Sunday Bwanhot who started the church and pastored it till then.

 

First & Second ECWA Church Louisville

First & Second ECWA Church, Louisville, KY, 2001

First & Second ECWA Church, Louisville, KY, 2001

This is the fourth church planted in the US and is being pastored by Rev. Dr. Stephen Awoniyi. The church was officially inaugurated April 15, 2001. The church worships at 5007 Southside Dr. Louisville, KY 40214. Although attendance has declined from the average of 40 in the main church, the blessing of having the 2nd ECWA Church – Swahili speaking congregation under the leadership of Rev. Jean Nzeyimana is highly appreciated.

 

ECWA Church, Atlanta

ECWA Church, Atlanta, GA, 2007

ECWA Church, Atlanta, GA, 2007

This is the fifth ECWA Church in the USA. It was officially inaugurated on Sunday September 2, 2007 under the leadership of Rev. Innocent Nwaobasi. The church currently meets at the home of Elder Josiah Osasona. Attendance is still low – under 20. Property was purchased early this year and Lord willing the church will move to its permanent site in due course.

 

 

Prayer Houses

ECWA Prayer Cell, Columbia, SC, 2006

ECWA Prayer Cell, Columbia, SC, 2006

While several Prayer houses have been started across the country, there is a general struggle to keep these prayer houses going:

  • Prayer House, Columbia SC, 2006
  • Prayer House in Los Angeles CA,
  • Prayer House in Dallas/Fort Wayne TX
  • Prayer House in Houston, TX, 2012
  • Prayer House, Xenia, OH, 2012
  • Prayer House in Minneapolis/St. Paul’s area, MN.

We need to pray for these Prayer Houses to stand.

 

How We Got Organized

Steering committee members that helped in mobilizing ECWA in the US.

Steering committee members that helped in mobilizing ECWA in the US, 1999

The first two churches planted came about because of the efforts of some ECWA individuals who felt the Lord leading them to do that. There was no organization, no plan or strategy for church planting for ECWA here in the US. The two churches existed independently of each other and of ECWA Headquarters.

Rev. Panya Baba (former ECWA President) visited the US and he and Rev. Bwanhot had a discussion. The outcome of which was a February 15, 1997 meeting in MD with the following in attendance: Rev. Panya Baba, Rev. George Adekeye, Mr. Sunday Buge, Rev. Innocent Nwaobasi, Elder Henry Bello, Dr. James Angbazo, Rev. Joseph Obielodan and Rev. Sunday Bwanhot. Our agenda was to consider our role as ECWA members in the spiritual well-being of our people and others in the US. A Sub-Committee was appointed to plan a big ECWA Family Reunion for July 2-5, 1999.



ECWA History

ECWA is the result of several missionaries that traveled to Africa from Canada and the United States in the late 1800’s. ECWA is currently the largest Protestant denomination in Nigeria with over 6,000 churches having an adult membership of 2.5 million and nearly 5 million in total attendance.

The Evangelical Church of West Africa was renamed “Evangelical Church Winning All (ECWA)” because of its wide spread to beyond its scope. It was a result of ministry history and the wide spread of the gospel of Jesus Christ in Africa by several missionaries who came from several places in the Canada and the United States of American on what can be termed “evangelical suicide mission” which was coined by Oji Chukwudimma Chukwudike because it will be glaring to see that West Africa, at that time, was known to be heavily infested with malaria and there is almost a 100% possibility that a white man will not survive it as they even called the West African region “the white man’s grave.” These missionaries braved malaria and yellow fever to preach the gospel of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ under the auspices of the Sudan Interior Mission (SIM) and planted several churches as they preach along like Paul the Apostle and around mid 20th century these churches became independent to carry on the gospel. ECWA has the largest mission organization of any African church living up to its name Evangelical which by name Evangelical Mission Society (ESM) has sent out over 1,400 missionaries.

Throughout Nigeria, but especially in the central regions, ECWA churches are growing rapidly. Some churches have experienced as much as 400% growth in the last several years. Churches in the Northern (traditionally more Islamic) parts of the country are also growing. There are currently more than five thousand ECWA congregations with more than five million attendees and a church membership of over three million people. ECWA has over eighty District Church Councils called DCC’s and a number of Local Church Councils called LCC’s.

ECWA has three Theological Seminaries: ECWA Theological Seminary, Kagoro was established in 1931, ECWA Theological Seminary, Igbaja in 1941, and Jos ECWA Theological Seminary in 1980. There are also eight Bible colleges and fifteen theological training institutes. ECWA’s Medical Department coordinates a wide network which includes four hospitals, a Community Health Program with over 110 health clinics, a Central Pharmacy and the School of Nursing and Midwifery. It is also involved in radio, publications for outreach and discipleship, rural development, urban ministries, and cross-cultural missions. There are more than 1,600 missionaries from ECWA churches who serve in Nigeria and other countries with the Evangelical Missionary Society (EMS), the missionary arm of ECWA.

There has been a serious confrontation between evangelical Christians standing in opposition to the expansion of Sharia law in northern Nigeria by militant Muslims since 1999. The confrontation has radicalized and politicized the Christians. Violence has been escalating.



British Missionary Kidnapped in Nigeria has been Killed

by Veronica Neffinger | Squires was one of four British missionaries who were abducted by the Nigerian cult in the country. He was working to help provide eye care for people in the country.(image, McKinsey & Company)

A British missionary who was abducted in October by a Nigerian cult has reportedly been killed.

According to Open Doors USA, Ian Squires was shot after leading a group in singing “Amazing Grace.”

“This missionary, Ian Squire, he was a real person,” said David Curry, of Open Doors USA. “He’s a real human being who was giving his life to try to help these folks in the south of Nigeria, and he was kidnapped and killed for his faith.

“And there are many people like him in Nigeria who have names and faces and families. They’re not all British, most of them are Nigerian themselves but they love Jesus and they’re dying for their faith.”

Squires was one of four British missionaries who were abducted by the Nigerian cult in the country. He was working to help provide eye care for people in the country.

“It’s just another example of what’s happening in Nigeria, although in a different vein,” Curry said. “Nigeria is a country that’s divided into—you’ve got the southern portion that’s largely Christian, but you have tribal factions in the north. You have these extremists from Boko Haram. It’s a country that is being pulled in a lot of directions.”

In November, a child suicide bombing killed more than 50 people in a mosque attack and another conflict between herders and farmers killed at least 30 people.

Nigeria is ranked number 12 on the Open Doors World Watch List of countries where Christians face the worst persecution.

“We are a particular people called by the name of Jesus,” Curry said. “We are called in Scripture to care for, to pray for others who are in chains or persecuted for the name of Jesus, and we have not done it. We do it on an incidental basis if we hear about an episode.

“This needs to be integrated into every church, every small group, every person’s prayer life that you’re praying for what God is doing in Africa, in Nigeria, those imprisoned and hurt and attacked, because we’re family.”