The Healing Jesus Campaign (HJC) with its trucks, buses, stage and equipment and teams from distant Ghana rumbled into Port Elizabeth this week to a warm welcome from the Nelson Mandela Bay Metropolitan Municipality and local churches — and many people gave their hearts to Jesus Christ and many received physical healings during three evangelistic crusades which attracted crowds of thousands of people each night.
In what I suspect must be a one-of-a-kind ministry in the world today, the HJC is in the middle of a month-long road trip (November 18 to December 20) through the Western Cape, Eastern Cape, Free State and Northern Cape, conducting evangelistic crusades and pastors’ and leaders’ conferences at each stop. HJC was launched in 2003 and has since recorded more than 10 million decisions for Christ.
By the time the team, led by international healing evangelist Bishop Dag Heward Mills arrived in PE they were preceded by testimonies of many souls saved and many healing miracles at their rallies in Cape Town, Paarl and Worcester. Gateway News attended a rally at Dan Qeqe Stadium, Zwide, on Tuesday, December 1 and one day of the 2-day pastors’ conference at Ebenezer Church in Algoa Park. The Excutive Mayor of NMB, Danny Jordaan, who had welcomed the evangelist to the city in front of the City Hall the previous day, officially opened the HJC at the Tuesday evening rally. The crowd cheered when he called upon the people of the Metro to hear the Gospel in order to return the city to its glorious place.
Heward Mills held everyone’s attention with his straight-shooting Gospel message entitled ‘All dead people are alive’. Referring to Hebrews 9:27 which says that everybody dies once and then faces judgment he noted that after dying we are sufficiently alive to ‘go to court’. All dead people are alive ‘somewhere’, he said. About a thousand people (my estimate) came forward in response to an invitation to accept Jesus as their Saviour and Lord and many people testified that God healed them after the evangelist prayed for healing. As people came onto the stage to share what Jesus had done for them their were testimonies of blind eyes opening, deaf ears hearing, the lame walking and breast lumps disappearing. A lady doctor — one of three doctors, including Heward Mills himself, on the stage — said she had examined the woman who said her breast lumps had vanished and confirmed there were no lumps.
At the well-attended pastors’ conference session on Wednesday morning Heward Mills taught church growth and ministry principles, drawing mainly from a bookshelf of his own books on the stage. There are currently more than 10 million of his books in print in many languages. Having started his ministry 25 years ago with five people in a classroom and currently overseeing 2 000 churches in 72 nations he clearly has something to say on the topics of church growth and church planting.
Give them God, not money
‘Stop preaching about money and success. People want God not money but we feel under pressure to talk about money. Let’s give them God — but God comes with the cross, with sacrifice.’ — These are not necessarily his exact words but close enough. Heward Mills said one of the reasons for Islam’s overwhelming spread in West Africa was the African church’s failure to plant churches in the area, preferring to set up ministries in prosperous western nations. He said prosperity-focused preaching produces believers who want something from God rather than to serve Him. Changing the message to one about the privilege of serving God would result in a powerful missionary move all over Africa, something which he said he ‘saw in the Spirit’ for South Africa.
Heward Mills’s teaching ranged onto other key topics such as the need for fathers in the church and the link between honouring fathers and inheriting their anointing. A noticeable difference between the Ghanaian team’s conference and typical SA conferences was the dispensing with tea breaks. Other than a short time of worship at the start, the five hour morning session was devoted to meaty teaching and I didn’t see anybody complaining!
The HJC’s next stops are East London (Sisa Dukashe Stadium, Mdantsane) — December 4, 5, 6; King William’s Town (Victoria Ground) — December 7, 8; Mthatha (Rotary Stadium) — December 9, 10, 11; Queenstown (Indoor Sports Centre) — December 12, 13; Bloemfontein — December 15, 16, 17 and Kimberly — December, 18, 19, 20. More information is available from Rev Erasmus Mills-Thompson at 081 096 2661 or firstname.lastname@example.org and from the website: www.daghewardmills.org