“Greet Priscilla and Aquila, my fellow workers in Christ Jesus.” Romans 16:3
Just as the Apostle Paul had many co-workers in the churches of the First Century, so we too are blessed by many co-workers in the churches in Angola. We believe this partnership is crucial to the work God has set before us. Let us introduce just a few of our Angolan co-workers who have already had a profound impact on our lives and work.
The ICA Churches – The congregations of the Igreja de Cristo em Angola (the Church of Christ in Angola) have formally extended a warm invitation for us to join them in God’s work in Angola. Together we will focus on four areas:
- Theological formation for church leaders
- Church planting in new regions of the country
- Evangelization by existing congregations
- Social service to Angolan communities
ICA consists of more than 30 congregations in 7 of Angola’s 18 provinces. The largest concentrations of ICA churches are in Uíge Province and Luanda, primarily among Lingala speakers. ICA has a zeal for church planting outside of these areas, and we hope to partner with them in this endeavor. They also have a deep desire to follow Scripture, so we will grow together in obedience to God’s Word.
The legal representative for ICA is André Banda, a man whom we have come to respect greatly. André and his wife live in Luanda, where he provides leadership for ICA. He has a special desire to see churches reach out beyond themselves, and is constantly looking for ways to overcome obstacles to church planting, evangelism, and disciple-making. Because of this passion, André has been instrumental in opening the door for our team.
Charles Kambungo‘s personal story reveals the power of God at work in Angola. Charles’s mother gave birth to him while fleeing from the war, so he grew up in a refugee camp in Zambia. There he met Christ. As a young man, he decided to return to Angola – still at war – to spread the Good News. He began working with the ICA churches and is currently starting a church in Huambo, where we hope to move. At each step of our journey Charles has provided invaluable help, and in the process has also become a dear friend.
Stephen Kapaipi is one of several Christians who returned from Zambia to Angola when the war ended. Those who settled in Luena formed a church and are attempting to provide a Christian presence in spite of the social and bureaucratic difficulties involved. Their story reminds us that God has been laying a foundation long before our team arrives in Angola. We join a growing throng of Christians eager to see the Kingdom expand – and we each need what the others can provide. That’s the marvel of the body of Christ!
There are many more Angolans who labor beside us in the Kingdom, and God will raise up still more in the future. We’re excited to introduce them to you in the coming years!