Pastor Reuben Africa the local coordinator of a two-weeks evangelism campaign in the Northern Areas of Nelson Mandela Bay that ended last Sunday reports on what God did in some of the most notorious, gang-ridden areas of the metro
Everywhere we went, people responded with great enthusiasm, to the message of Hope, presented through drama, dance and testimony.
We saw some of the greatest impact on lives in areas that are notorious due to gangsterism and violence.
In one area, a man was on his way with a gun in his hand to go and kill someone. He heard the singing and music and was curious to see what was happening. One of our co-workers spoke to him and he just broke down, surrendering his life to the Lord.
In another gang-riddled area, a lady asked me to pray for her brother who is a leader of a notorious gang. We grew up together. When we went there a second time, she told me that she shared with him that she spoke to me. He asked for prayer for him and his wife. She also offered to take me to a group of drug users to talk to them.
Today, when I saw her again, she reminded that she will arrange the meeting with them and go with me. These are wonderful opportunities that God is creating for us, to touch people’s lives.
In every community we visited, people responded with tears and brokenness, ready to make a commitment to Christ.
In one area, our workers went inside a drug post, to pray with people who were busy using drugs. After some initial resistance, some hardcore drug users broke down in tears as our team prayed for them. We are grateful.
Another miracle that happened, was that two mainline churches opened their doors to us. The one church allowed us to have our daily team devotions in their building, when we were stranded.
The other church committed to build a long term relationship with us, in addressing gangsterism and drug addiction together in the community. They offered to put a team together with us, that will include social workers, a psychologist who for many years dealt with hardcore prisoners at Pollsmoor Prison and other professionals. All these role players want to see our communities change for the better.
A school principal was very open to the idea of us adopting their school as part of our ongoing outreach programme, in future.
At our main drama event in Gelvandale last Saturday people were queueing from an hour before the time, to get access to the community centre. During both showings, the hall was packed out and people responded for prayer. Many were broken and desperate for help.
It is safe to say that Port Elizabeth (Gqeberha) has never seen anything like this on our troubled streets before. In one of the most feared areas of our city, we had the biggest turnout and response to the Gospel. Many reached out to us for prayer and ministry.
The next step will be to put up the rehab home and continue with follow up on the many hundreds who responded. We give God all the glory.
The campaign was initiated by Victory Outreach International (VOI), in Cape Town and brought together a team from VOI in Cape Town, VOI volunteers from around the world and a local team led by Northern Areas pastors.
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