By Nicole Brown; The Gathering Church 

Ministry in Ethiopia

It is the first day of the September 2018 session of the Bible class in Shire, Ethiopia. As we approach the classroom,  we can hear prayers and beautiful songs reverberating to our ears. We enter the classroom, where we see some familiar faces and some new.

Upon completion of the student-led worship, we make introductions. Approximately 14 of the 35 pastor-in-training students are refugees. Pastor David Fortner, along with Pastor Matthias Rosbrugh, jump right in to teaching. Throughout the many hours together, friendships are made, deep questions are asked, and tests are taken. It is incredible to think where these future pastors will go and how many lives will be changed because of their obedience to the Lord.

Material Gifts Bless Many

While on this trip in the Horn of Africa, we give clothes to 375 unaccompanied minors in camp Hit Sats. In a town nearby, Shire, 75 widows and orphans receive oil, flour, spices and some children’s clothing.

Because of very generous donors in our Association, we are able to help a church plant in Sheraro build a place of worship – the construction will be almost complete by January 2019! We attend the overflowing church on a Sunday morning and listen as the people tell how the Lord has saved them and changed their lives because of having an evangelical church to come to. This church is a plant off of a church plant – isn’t God amazing!? He really is at work and the people in Ethiopia are hard at work winning the lost.

Many Shoes and Many Smiles

Countless pairs of shoes were donated prior to our trip, so of course, we equip many bare feet! As we walk the streets of Shire looking for bare feet in need of shoes, we have divine appointments with children, even helping outfit one young boy so he can attend school. The smiles on the faces of the elderly tell us how one pair of shoes – something that seems so minimal to us – can mean everything

We return home, bodies tired but hearts full, thankful for the prayers that empower us to minister, the obedience to God that mobilizes BR-KC in this partnership, the financial gifts that make these trips possible, and the shoes that allow fellow humans to walk in comfort.