Stories

  • Sweeter Than Honey

    Sweeter than honey in the honeycomb, indeed! The Word of God can now be heard in this town that is famous for the honey it produces. Radio Uhai FM broadcasts from Tabora in western Tanzania reaching perhaps a quarter of a million listeners. Radio programming features gospel music and teaching from the Word of God in the Swahili language.

    Khadija, who was spiritually lost, was sick in bed. He listened to the radio to fill the quiet hours. Hearing a pastor on Radio Uhai, he picked up his phone to request prayer and healing. The pastor prayed for Khadija live on the air and the next day he felt much better! Amazed at what he had heard and seen, he immediately went to the pastor’s church and gave his life to Christ.

    Magreth, a Christian, was concerned about her unbelieving children. A pastor on Radio Uhai encouraged her to begin fervently praying for them. One month later the children began listening to the radio with her and asked to go to church where they accepted Christ and were baptized.

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  • A Boom Box, Twelve-volt Battery and a Solar Panel

    In the isolated countryside of Bolivia, Bruce and Janice Johnson were laying the footings for a new radio studio. A man approached them, said he’d been curious, and had to come investigate. He told them his daughter listens to a radio station in San Borja (Bruce and Janice’s first station).

    “She listens to it all day and night, even when other languages are spoken, because she knows they are talking about God. You see, she was born blind and that radio station is her world!”

    Bruce and Janice serve with Ethnos 360. They have worked in Bolivia for over twenty years setting up radio stations and producing programs in six different languages. Bolivia is a country in west-central South America and runs from the peaks of the Andes Mountains in the west to the Amazon Basin in the east. About three dozen people groups account for sixty percent of the population.

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  • Overcoming Geographical and Cultural Challenges

    “Africa in miniature.” This is a common designation for one country in West Africa. Cameroon includes all the major climates and vegetation found on the continent: beaches, deserts, mountains, savannas and rainforests. About the size of California, this geographically and culturally diverse nation encompasses 250 different language groups.

    It is difficult bringing biblical truth to a nation where diverse religious beliefs exist when navigation from one region to another is arduous and language barriers exist within its borders.

    These challenges didn’t hinder Dr. Donald and Betty Hocking who began the Cameroon Biblical Seminary in the 1980s. Today, Grace Bible Mission has become the mission board of the Cameroon Biblical Seminary, Grace Bible Churches of Cameroon (a fellowship of 80 churches), and a Christian medical clinic.

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  • One Radio Station and the Story of Two Souls

    Buhati walked into the pastor’s office at Radio Alpha Omega FM with tears streaming down her cheeks. Life had become unbearable for this young, unmarried, pregnant girl. Pastor Mabutwa, who runs the station in Goma, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), listened as she shared her story.

    While in high school, she became pregnant and was beaten severely by her family until she and her boyfriend, Justin, ran away. Feeling a nagging sense of hopelessness, she decided to end her life. That evening she turned on her radio and tuned in to a message of hope. Buhati knew she had to find where the radio station was located. It was there that Pastor Mabutwa was able to lead her to Jesus.

    But Buhati’s struggles were not over. Justin, who had since married her, refused to allow her to attend church. The radio program was her only source of spiritual nourishment. One day, she was escorted to the pastor’s office by her husband. He thanked them for their programs but said he didn’t want his wife in church. If she tried to go to church, he would beat her.

    Providentially, Radio Alpha Omega FM held weekly meetings at the station for listeners to come together. Justin and his wife attended; however, Justin made it clear that, although they could attend the radio meetings, they could not go to church. Their presence at these meetings continued until, finally, Justin surrendered his life to Christ. Now he and Buhati are evangelists together, proclaiming Jesus to others.

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  • Coming Full Circle

    Nathan Steele says he has radio broadcasting in his genes. His father was a pioneer, putting the first FM stereo radio station on the air in Los Angeles in 1959. Nathan’s parents loved the Lord, and, in 1966 when Nathan was a teenager, they left their home in California to become missionaries with HCJB, a radio broadcasting mission in Ecuador.

    School work didn’t excite Nathan at Alliance Academy in Ecuador. What excited him was radio. He worked in studios during high school and college, dropping out of college to become a disc jockey for a rock ‘n’ roll station. Although Nathan shared his father’s passion for radio, he did not share his parent’s passion for the things of God. “Somehow I turned my back on all of that stuff and walked away for about 20 years.”

    In 1996, God got a hold of Nathan’s heart after visiting his sister’s church in Japan, where she had become a missionary herself.

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  • The Height of God’s Love in the Depths of the Canyon

    The Cotahuasi Canyon is the deepest canyon in the world and has some of the most rugged country on earth. At its deepest point, the canyon cuts roughly 11,560 feet into the earth which is over twice the depth of the Grand Canyon. Peaks as high as 20,000 feet above sea level create a dramatic contrast. Amazingly, there are over 40 villages scattered throughout the canyon, some accessible only by hiking or horseback. “How are we to share the gospel with them? How are we to encourage those who are responding?”

    These were questions posed by Brad and Gina Shaw, missionaries with SIM as they sought to minister to the Quechua people of Cotahuasi Canyon in southern Peru.

    Finding solutions to hard questions is what SonSet Solutions is all about. With equipment and technical support from our center, Sendas Cristianas started broadcasting the good news of Jesus Christ to the canyon’s remote Quechua communities in 2008. Distributions of SonSet® radios ensured that previously unreached villagers had access to the life-changing messages.

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  • Obstacles Turn to Celebration

    Sometimes we face enormous obstacles, even when we’re confident we are following God’s leading. This was the experience of Nigerian businessman Benny King as he endeavored to establish a Christian radio station in the metropolitan city of Asaba, Nigeria.

    Finding a source of power to run the station that was affordable, reliable, and legal required multiple starts, stops, and U-turns. Obtaining paper work, approvals, signatures, and funding took months longer than hoped. And most disappointing of all, Benny found out that the station had been mistakenly assigned the wrong frequency after he had already printed it on their new letterhead and paid for professionally produced station identification spots. But with a deep conviction that God was going to use Christian radio to make an impact in this community, Benny pressed on.

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  • A Voice that War Could Not Silence

    The day started unremarkably, but it quickly threatened to turn deadly. While Richard McDonald was away assisting a friend, his wife Kathy helped the radio announcer start the transmitter for a day of broadcasting over Radio Kahuzi in Bukavu, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Suddenly a truck pulled up, and out jumped 17 rebel soldiers with automatic weapons. It was 1998, and a war involving several nations and multiple rebel groups was wreaking havoc in the DRC. The soldiers commandeered the station and demanded that the broadcasts stop.

    One particularly menacing soldier walked over to Kathy and asked, “Aren’t you afraid to die?” She had heard that rebels had pillaged the area and attacked women, but she knew she must not show fear. Speaking with more boldness than she felt she said, “Oh, no. God watches over me… If I live, I live with Jesus, and if I die, I die with Jesus.” Inexplicably, the soldiers soon packed up and left.

    If you met Richard and Kathy McDonald, you would be struck by how gentle and unassuming they are. You would never know that, more than once, they were pinned down in their home as gunfire was exchanged around them by warring factions. No one would have blamed them had they left the DRC for good. But their passion for the lost has kept them there for decades, active in the ministry, despite the dangers.

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