Arusha is an important city in the country of Tanzania. It is situated between Mt. Meru and Mt. Kilimanjaro and boasts an incredible amount of diversity among its people. So it’s only appropriate that this melting pot of a city served as the location where AWR producers from across Africa met with AWR headquarters personnel in March 2019 to share the Three Angels’ Messages in this special city.
This gathering of more than 90 producers served two purposes: first, during the day, AWR provided training for the producers about the mission and vision of AWR360°, and shared resources with them. Second, each of the producers preached an evangelistic series at night!
God blessed in so many ways. Training was provided by AWR staff members Duane McKey, Ray Allen, Sue Hinkle, Cami Oetman, Alyssa Truman and myself. The presenters provided key information and resources to each local station so they could truly fulfill the mission of broadcast to baptism.
After each day’s training, one of the producers would practice that evening’s sermon in front of the group. This provided a time for the other producers to review the material, give feedback to the presenter and be encouraged for their own evening meetings.
At 4 p.m. each day, local pastors, elders and church leaders would begin picking up individuals to take them to their preaching sites. The locations varied—some were in the open air, others in churches, while yet others were in schools. The power of the Holy Spirit rained down in Arusha. Many of the producers had never before preached a sermon! I visited many of the sites and saw the power of God working through each of these humble servants.
At one of our boarding academy sites, there were four Muslim girls who made a decision to follow Jesus and were baptized into the Seventh-day Adventist Church.
We also found that at many of the preaching locations, due to pressure from the local Lutheran Church, attendees were afraid to come forward during appeals due to potential repercussions. However, as local Adventist pastors and elders visited the homes, people made decisions and took a stand for Jesus Christ.
Even more amazing was the fact that during their home visits, local pastors and elders discovered that many people were listening in their homes thanks to the open-air loudspeakers at some locations. Although these individuals were not attending in person, they were listening intently and taking copious notes. They, too, made decisions to follow Jesus and be baptized into the Seventh-day Adventist Church.
As this powerful time in Arusha has ended, 1526 souls have been baptized into God’s last-day remnant church, with more continuing to study. Furthermore, 90 producers returned to their home territories energized by the Gospel message and even more committed to taking the Three Angels’ Messages to all of Africa and around the world—leading people from broadcast to baptism!
By Chris Holland