Luke, a member of our Chester-le-Street congregation, is currently spending time in Clarens, South Africa, where he is working as a volunteer teacher with Dihlabeng Christian School, as well as getting involved in outreach into local communities out there.
Last Sunday, he sent us this amazing update about a new church plant in Lesotho which he got to visit:
“Hi friends! If you don't know me, or have been wondering where I've been then I'm in South Africa, in a town called Clarens, teaching maths and science at the school linked to the church here for the term.
Anyway I thought I'd let you know about an outreach that I was part of with a group from the church here recently, where we went over the border into Lesotho to where a church was planted only 2 weeks ago and so they were baptising 26 new believers!
One of the women who was being baptised is the chief of the village where they're based and also of 5 surrounding villages so it's really cool for them to have her on side, for example there's a load of stone nearby which she's said they can use to build their church building with (they need her permission or would need to buy some from elsewhere).
In the evening they held an evangelistic meeting in the tent they've been using for church. There Gareth (the leader of Dihlabeng church in Clarens) shared the story of the paralysed man being brought to Jesus and having his sins forgiven and then being healed so that they may "know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins". Then it was over to us, to show that Jesus is alive today we were going to pray for healing for people, which is scary because we're totally reliant on Jesus to show up, but obviously that's a great place to be. So Gareth got us (myself and Jabu, who's from Clarens) to share words of knowledge for people who needed healing and then we prayed for them. From what I could tell all 3 of my words were accurate, including one lady who matched two of them (pain in her right knee and not able to see out of her left eye). After praying a few times she shared that the pain in her knee was gone and she was jumping up and moving it freely! We then prayed for her eye too and saw significant improvement so that she was then able to make out how many fingers were being held up. Gareth said that her eye had been cloudy but he could see it clearing (I was behind her, so couldn't see this). And she said that she had faith for complete healing of her eye. A few others reported healings too but I'm not quite sure of the details as some of it was lost in translation. And after the healing loads of people then responded to the offer of Jesus' forgiveness and prayed a salvation prayer.
I hope you're encouraged to hear how God's moving on the other side of the world in our wider church family!”