In Sakalava culture, having a funeral or building a grave always involves ancestral worship. This weekend a Christian family, having finished the grave of their mum, will have a party, inviting all their families and friends to worship God. Please pray that it would have a great impact on the attendees, helping them to see who should be worshipped!
The former team made great strides in translations of several books of Scripture into the Sakalava dialect but the work ended as there was a lack of people able to help. Please pray for us to find new people skilled in English who will be interested in translating the Bible into Sakalava. With those identified, the team would be able to get the translation project up and running again.
SALAMA is her name. She is a Sakalava woman seriously practicing her mu$lim faith from childhood. It happens that she is a helper in a Christian home for the last couple of months. She openly talks about her faith and respects the Christian faith her boss has. She has heard about Jesus but is not excited about it. As the month of fasting is getting closer she is so excited and has prepared herself for the event in a big way. She has asked she would be given a break every Friday from next week so she could go to mosque, which her employer agreed to. Please pray for Salama that she would meet Jesus in her dreams during this time.
In our village, one missionary had noticed the skills of many Sakalava women in sewing and hand stitching. She helped them to get together, work together, and sell their products together. Those women felt helped and valued and are able to earn money to help their households. Recently they got an order for about 300 of their products. It was very exciting that last Sunday they came to church. Pray that through their skills they would come to know that this is a gift from God and they would see Him as a caring and loving Father who wants the best for them: their salvation.
Sakalava fishermen in Nosybe are facing a big challenge with providing for their families for a couple of months now. This has never happened to them before. Please pray for the few believers who are convicted to reach out to their own people, yet passing through the same challenge. Pray that they will stand firm in their faith. Many fishermen question them, “Where is your God in this situation?” Pray for strength and boldness of witness as well as how to answer wisely. Pray that they will not feel intimidated or hopeless.
Pray for Pastor Guillaume as he gets training in church planting movements, to know how to apply what he’s learning to the Sakalava church plants he’s involved with. Pray for these churches to have the vision of sharing their faith and planting many more churches!
It’s common and admired for Sakalava to be possessed by evil spirits. One Sakalava gentleman recently put his faith in Jesus and wants to be set free from the demons. He was in the capital but wanted to go to Nosy Be to retrieve his fetishes etc to be burned, however a huge cyclone is preventing him from going. Please pray for A and his wife, who is also a follower of Jesus. Pray for their families who are still bound by witchcraft and fear and don’t know yet about A’s decision. It may result in great shock and rejection. Please pray for God’s glory to be revealed in the community through this couple.
Pastor Guillaume, a Malagasy pastor, based in Mahajanga in North West Madagascar, has seen God bless his ministry amongst the Sakalava people recently. Pastor Guillaume planted six churches amongst Sakalava people in and around Mahajanga a few years ago but none of the churches were really growing. However from September to November 2016 Pastor Guillaume was able to visit the churches and using a mixture of the Jesus video in the Sakalava dialect and a new T4T curriculum he has seen a total of about 70 new believers coming to faith. The local churches are continuing to disciple the new believers using the T4T short term discipleship programme.
Because of the rainy season Pastor Guillaume won’t be able to visit any of these places (many of which are in the bush) until about May this year. Pray for the new Sakalava believers that they would grow in their new faith and share it with others. Pray also that the churches would start to plant new churches.
There are 6 Sakalava churches around Mahajanga! Pray for pastor Guillaume and pastor Juno. Ask God to give the believers vision for sharing their faith and starting new churches.
Praise the Lord! One of the Sakalava musicians that came to Christ would like to be a pastor and is being sent for training. (News from Missionary, Rosina, Nosy Be)