Wow! Where do I start from? The team of eight left Portland International Airport on 3/15/16 and arrived in Nigeria on 3/16/16. All of the seventeen pieces of luggage arrived with us and everything was accounted for. Some of the leaders of Glad Tidings Ministries (GTM) were already at the Port Harcourt airport waiting for us with four vehicles for our transportation (one bus, three SUVs and one sedan car). We spent the night at a hotel in the city of Port Harcourt, the capital of the Rivers State. After breakfast the next day, 3/17/16, we loaded up and traveled to the village of Lewe, Gokana Local Government area.
On arrival in Lewe, where we would reside for the next fourteen days, there was great excitement as the brethren and family members welcomed us. We unloaded and tried to unwind and prepare for the time ahead. We all stayed in Burabari and Rosemary Daaza’s five-bedroom house, it was comfortable and beyond our expectation.
On Sunday, 3/20/16, Pastor Timothy ministered greatly to those who gathered. The church service lasted for four hours and no one left early. The Spirit of the Lord was present to heal and deliver people. There was great rejoicing in the church. I cannot put into words what took place that Sunday, it was so powerful.
During the week, we visited the Glad Tidings farm located along the coastal/bay area of the Atlantic Ocean, about 10-15 minutes drive from Lewe. We raise poultry/eggs, catfish, different fruits and vegetables. We also visited the Bori Church which was still under construction. The roofing was not yet completed when we arrived in Nigeria. They were still clearing and leveling the inside of the church. A decision was made that we would like to dedicate the church on Easter Sunday, 3/27/16, while we were all in Nigeria. The youth rose to the occasion and worked relentlessly to make it happen. I will come back to this later.
The youth leaders of Glad Tidings Ministries had organized a three-day Youth Seminar titled, “Impartation for the next Level”. The seminar started on 3/24/16 and ended on 3/26/16. The church was packed every night with people of all ages. Pastor Neahe Miller, Youth Pastor at According to His Word Worship Center located in Vancouver, Washington State, spoke the first night and connected excellently with the youth as he shared the story of his salvation and life in Christ. Pastor Perry Swett shared on the second day of the seminar. He spoke from the Book of Joshua in the Bible where God, following the death of Moses, spoke to Joshua to lead the people of Israel across the Jordan River into the Promised Land. The message was very moving to the extent that Evangelist Burabari, President of Glad Tidings Ministries, gave a fifteen minute summary of the message, challenging the youth to take the leadership mantle to the next level. Timothy Chiles, Senior Pastor/Teacher/Apostle of According to His Word Worship Center, spoke on the last day of the seminar. The presence of the Lord was strong and there were some demonic manifestations and deliverance that took place. There was excitement in the atmosphere and many were healed.
The Good Samaritan Story | Lewe Version: Sunday, 3/20/16
The devil was not happy with what transpired during the 3/20/16 Sunday service. There was a young man named Eke who used to belong to a cultist gang in the village of Lewe. In October, 2015, Eke heard the Gospel of Christ about salvation and surrendered his life to Jesus Christ, and has been attending the Glad Tidings Church in Lewe. He was one of those that Pastor Chiles personally ministered to during the church service. When the church service ended, the leaders stayed behind for leadership meeting which lasted about another three hours. It was during this meeting that I distributed the book titled, “Minute Motivation for Leaders”, which was donated to us by Pastor Stan Stoeller.
Eke left the service and went to a local store in the village to buy something to eat. He had only two hundred Naira( the Nigerian currency, which is now less than one US dollar). The former gang members ambushed him and dragged him to the nearby forest. Then they bound him up with some steel rods, beat him up with rods, and he sustained multiple deep cuts on his scalp, armpit area and lower legs with the machete. When they saw that he was bleeding profusely and was about to die, their leader told the rest not to let him die. They then loosened the rods, dragged him to the side of the road half-dead. A lady who was walking along the road found him that Sunday evening, and went and got a motorcycle rider, and brought him to his home. When his wife saw him, she ran to notify Burabari of what had happened. We had just got home for about 15 minutes from the leadership meeting. Then Burabari sent the church driver to bring him in the church vehicle to his house where we were all staying. I was just about to go into our room to take off my white Nigerian outfit when Rosemary, Burabari’s wife, told me to change quickly and come out because “we have a job to do”. I went out of the house and saw this man bleeding from the deep lacerations. I quickly changed my clothes and came out. Rosemary is an experienced OB/Gyn Registered Nurse in Regina, Canada.
Well, the miracle began. I examined the wounds which Rosemary had done her best t clean up. Fortunately, Rosemary brought some sutures but there was no needle driver or any other instrument except for a small pair of scissors to cut the sutures. She started an IV line and hung up a 500 cc bag of IV fluid, and we started suturing the scalp lacerations. How fast can someone go when there is no needle driver and you are carefully holding the needle to penetrate through the skin? The brethren and members of the mission team were holding flash light and using the light on their cell phones to help us see what we were doing. While we were working on the scalp, Eke went into shock, and started shivering and almost died. Intercessory prayers started pouring out like wild fire and he regained his senses. Then we sutured the laceration in the armpit, and started working on the lower leg lacerations. The 500 cc IV had run out and we sent someone to buy another 500 cc IV bag. It took at least 30 minutes for them to bring the IV fluid. While working on the lower legs, Eke went into shock again and almost died. Intercessory prayers mounted up to the throne of heaven again and he regained his consciousness. The suturing was eventually completed and Rosemary cleaned him up and dressed up the wounds. Nothing was done in a sterile condition as we understand it here in the US and Canada. I was concerned for infection. I had Cephalexin antibiotic which was among the medications that Providence Health based in Portland, Oregon, donated to us. I started him on the antibiotic and later that night he was able to drink and eat something. We monitored him all night. The next day he was looking stable and he decided to go to his house to his family. The team members blessed him with money before he left. Eke is married with three children. His wife had given birth to the third child two weeks prior to our arrival in Lewe. Two days later, Eke came to Burabari’s house for recheck. He was looking good and the lacerations did not show any evidence of infection. I was amazed and went and got the rest of the team members to see Eke. Five days post-injury, the lacerations were healing nicely. On Saturday, 3/26/16, all the wounds had healed without any infection or complications. Eke looked good and we all gave the praise and glory to our God who still heals.
The Water Baptism
On Good Friday, March 25, 2016, the mission team joined the brethren from the GTM Bori and Lewe churches and traveled to Glad Tidings Farm by the bay area of the Atlantic Ocean for water baptism. It was high tide. We timed it right. After a brief message from Burabari, praise and worship started rising from the congregation while nine new believers in Christ were immersed in water baptism that Good Friday morning. My daughter, Kathryn, had indicated prior to our departure from the US that she would like to be baptized in water in Nigeria. She was one of those baptized. It was a joyous occasion. What an honor it was for me to baptize my daughter in Nigeria. To God be all the glory and praise forever.
The dedication of the GTM Bori Church on Easter Sunday, 3/27/16
First, we express our deep gratitude to the brethren from the US and Canada who donated the money toward the purchase of the land and the church building. To God be all the glory and praise. There is still work to be done on the building but the Glad Tidings Ministries brethren today have a place of worship.
We visited the church site, the roofing was in the process of being completed. The inside of the building needed to be cleared of all the debris and shrubs. A decision was made that we should dedicate the church building while we were in Nigeria. The young boys and girls worked hard to clear the premises and the inside of the church building. The roofing was completed and within the next week the main sanctuary was filled with sand, compacted and cemented. By 3/25/16, the building was ready for the dedication.
On Easter Sunday morning, we arrived in Bori and were amazed at the work that had been done. The main sanctuary looked good. People came and soon the whole place was filled up. The worship and praise started ascending to the throne of heaven. I could not control my emotions, and stood there and wept. What was a dream at one time had become a reality. As William Shakespeare put it, I expressed my joy in tears of sorrow”. The “high praise” was pouring out like water on the altar. It was wild. Pastor Timothy Chiles preached and ministered that morning. Mr. Eke was there – completely healed by the world’s greatest Physician, Dr. Yeshua. More praise and worship erupted following his testimony. The church was dedicated, the leaders prayed for, and the people of God were blessed. Food and beverages were provided and everyone ate and drank. We then dismissed with great rejoicing in the camp of the redeemed. Praise the Lord!
The Free Medical Clinic Outreach
I had been attending to and treating people medically from Burabari’s house, with the assistance of Rosemary( RN) and the team, since we arrived in Nigeria. On Easter Monday, 3/28/16, which was a public holiday in Nigeria, we conducted a free medical clinic at the Bori church sanctuary as an outreach to this new community where we are located. People came and the place was filled up. We had a station for registration. Vital signs were also obtained at this station. Then the patient would be directed to my station for evaluation and treatment recommendations. The next station was the “pharmacy” table where medications were dispensed as directed. There were interpreters at each table to assist with instructions. We thank Providence Health in Portland, Oregon, for donating medications that were given out free of charge to the people. What a blessing it was! The last station before the exit door was the “Ministry/Prayer” area where people were prayed for as needed. Many were touched by the Lord. The event lasted the whole day and we saw about two hundred people including pediatric patients. Overall, we attended to over five hundred people medically during our stay in Nigeria.
Where We Are Today | The Urgent Needs
The Bori Church still needs doors, windows, and toilets for both men and women. Concrete needs to be poured on the floors of the office and storage areas. We also need a bore-hole well on the church campus for pure drinking water, and for the toilets to function.
The Lewe Church has outgrown its capacity. This is great news as the Lord has added to His church. The new believers have said this is the church they want to attend. We were forced, therefore, to take a step of faith when we were at home, to begin an expansion project of the church building. Pictures of the project so far are forth coming. We need financial help with the completion of this church building.
Free Medical Clinic/Outreach we need more volunteers( Medical Assistants, Registered Nurses, Nurse Practitioners, Physician Assistants and physicians). We also need donations for medical supplies and medications.
The Glad Tidings Farm the prices of things, especially food and building materials, have almost doubled since we left Nigeria in March this year. There is hardship among the brethren. Many have no jobs and for those who do, they work for 3-4 months sometimes without being paid. Our people are suffering. The cost of feeding the fish, chicken and turkeys has almost doubled too. There is high demand for eggs as people are coming to the farm requesting 30-50 crates of eggs. We have not been able to meet this demand because of the financial implications. In the midst of the economic crisis in Nigeria right now, there are also opportunities.
As Pastor/Teacher Chuck Swindoll said in one of his books, “We are all faced with a series of great opportunities, brilliantly disguised as impossible situations”. Our heart and our goal are to empower the people and to expand the Kingdom of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. We desire to establish His will on this earth as it is in heaven. Please help us. God bless.
Sincerely in His Service,
Dr. William Nyone