Rev. Jerry Kulah, one of CUMC’s trusted ministry partners in Liberia, gives an incredible glimpse into what life has been like in Liberia in 2014.
Rev. Kulah currently serves as the President of the Gbarnga School of Theology in Gbarnga, Liberia. He also partners with CUMC and International Leadership Institute (ILI) to train and equip Pastors as a part of CUMC’s Liberia Initiative.
Please continue to pray for Rev. Kulah, Dr. Chris Hena, Rev. John Soclo and all of our brothers and sisters in Western Africa as they faithfully follow God’s call in midst of very difficult times.
On behalf of the UMC Africa Initiative, we write to wish you a very merry Christmas and a blessed New Year, 2015. In spite of all the challenges you might have gone through during this year, 2014, you will agree with us that the Lord Almighty has been gracious unto you and your family, and your ministries. We all share this testimony of the mercy, goodness, and faithfulness of the Lord. In spite of our unfaithfulness, limitations, shortcomings, the Lord has been abundantly gracious unto all of us. That is why we give Him all the glory, and pray his continued blessings upon your life and ministry throughout the New Year. Our prayer is that God plants your life, ministry and family on higher grounds of resounding success, blessings, provisions, and protection. May He crown you with glory and honor. Amen!
For many of your brothers and sisters in the Western part of Africa, the year 2014 has been especially difficult as a result of the Ebola virus disease that suddenly came upon us and painfully invaded our ranks. As we celebrate the birth of the Christ Child, the Prince of Peace, (Isa. 9:6-7), I want you to know that about 7000 precious lives have been lost to the Ebola virus, with over 3000 of the loss been suffered by Liberia. The Church and nation of Liberia have indeed been at the crossroads of life, trusting God to lead the way and cross us over unto the other side safely (Mark 4:35-41). And our faith in God is crossing us over into the New Year, 2015. Amen!
At the crossroads here in Liberia, I have seen widows surrounded by their children, with tears streaming down their eyes, crying for their daddies who are no more because of Ebola; I have seen entire family wiped out of this life to their untimely demise because of Ebola; I have seen promising future leaders fallen victim to Ebola, and being whisked away in plastic bags to be cremated. And I have heard, with deep pains and sorrows, shouts and wailings in many communities as we go about to mourn and pray with the bereaved, and offer some mercy ministries “Ah, Lord, why, why did my parents have to die such a painful, shameful death? Why should my mother, my father be burnt and not have a grave to be remembered; why would they not be carried to the church for whom they have earnestly labored for a befitting funeral, and burial?”
The cries have seemed endless in many communities over the past months; I believe, not only here in Liberia, but in communities in Guinea, Sierra Leone, Mali, Senegal, etc. The good news, however, is that the story is fast changing! God, in his mercy and grace, has shown up, and the Ebola virus is fast becoming a history. We will continue to pray until all of Western Africa can celebrate the total eradication of the Ebola virus. Thank you for standing with your brothers and sisters in prayer and in offering various kinds of support toward our common fight against this deadly virus. Thanks to many friendly nations who continue to support our Government in the eradication efforts.
As we enter the New Year, let us continue to pray for global United Methodism to remain faithful and committed to its biblical mandate to be the catalyst for leading persons to faith in Jesus Christ and to making Disciples of Christ for the holistic transformation of the world. In order to achieve this goal, we must also remain true and obedient to the Holy Scripture that gave birth and spiritually transforming power to the Methodist Movement that we cherish today as the United Methodist Church.
God has a promising future for the people called United Methodists. If we continually believe, and not divert from the faith; and we together pray, the Holy Spirit will manifest, and global UMC will be saved and become more united than ever. We remain committed to this cause. God richly bless you. MERRY CHRISTMAS, AND A BLESSED AND PROSPEROUS NEW YEAR, 2015.