Vineyard USA just sent out their monthly newsletter with some great articles highlighting some of the things God is doing in Kenya, Africa. Apparently, a few weeks ago the churches in Kenya were released as their own Association of Vineyard Churches (AVC) – meaning that Vineyard churches in that country are now self-governing, self-promoting and self-funded. (yay!!!)
The first article talks a bit about the formation of the Vineyard movement in Kenya and how things got started there:
“Really, it started off with a small prayer group of women near Nairobi that mainly focused on praying for other women who had come to faith for different reasons. They were praying for their husbands and for their own spiritual renewal. One of the key leaders of the group was from Australia; she and her husband returned to Australia for a visit and ended up going to a conference about the Vineyard in Perth. When they returned to Kenya, they brought the Vineyard materials and teachings with them, and that one small group there ended up being the formation of the first Vineyard church.”
From there, the Lord connected them with the the South Africa Vineyard AVC (who ended up sending them a pastor missionary early on) and the Vineyard USA (via an Vineyard missionary working with a NGO in Kenya). The rest they say is history.
The second article is by Mark Fields, Vineyard USA Missions Task Force Director, who talks a bit about Noah Gitau who Jesus choose to lead the new AVC:
“Then he [Noah] told me a story of something that happened while he was working for the government. He was wrongly identified as a criminal that had earned a shoot-on-sight order. Police cars came in, surrounded his car, pulled out their guns and opened fire. There were 47 bullet holes in his car, not counting the windows, which were also shot out. But Noah got out of the car and walked away untouched. The police were scared to death of being around him, because there’s no question that you can survive 47 bullet holes in your car and walk away unscathed unless something supernatural has happened.
“Noah told me story after story. I walked away realizing that God was at work in Kenya and intended to build the Vineyard there long before Bubba Justice or the Hanawalts from Evanston or the South Africans or anyone else showed up. God was at work there, preparing Noah, protecting him for that day and for what the future holds.”
Mark also shares a bit about his heart to see 10,000 Vineyard churches started around the world in the next ten years. A goal that has been embraced by the Vineyard leaders in Brazil:
“While I [Mark] was in Brazil in May, I shared about the idea of learning to plant thousands of churches. Two of the Vineyard leaders in Brazil came up to me and said, ‘We believe we can plant 1,000 of those churches here. We want to buy into this.’”
God is definitely on the move around the world – and we get to play a part! How cool is that?! 😀