Kenya National Campaign
May 31 - June 15, 2002
(Last updated August 14, 2002 05:35 PM)
Migori - Stephen Jakovac
Hi every one!
I know that you have been waiting patiently for the "REPORT FROM AFRICA," the greatest Evangelistic Campaign ever undertaken by the SDA Church so far, but
I was waiting for the latest figure from Migori, which have come yesterday. Here it is.
As you know, my team of 6 and I were assigned to a little town of MIGORI in the Northwest corner of Kenya, close to Tanzania and the Lake Victoria. Migori is a small town of 30,000 population, but God had performed some of the greatest miracles there - out of 30,000 people, we had on the average 20,000 people coming. Almost the whole town! Glory be to God. We started with 8,000 first night and the number escalated to 20,000 and more when the subject "New World Order" was presented. That night it reached 25,000.
If we ever needed your prayers it was in this Evangelistic Campaign. We have had so many obstacles that it is almost hard to keep the number. The enemy was working hard to destroy, dispel and confuse the people and us, but through the mighty name of Jesus and your prayers, he did not succeed. Apart from the rain and the storms we had thieves coming one night who held up some of our team members by gun and machetes, taking some money and two cameras, but sparing their lives. That night they robbed 6 homes, killing one man who resisted their demands. But, the greatest obstacle came at the very end, last two days. The President of the country, Daniel Moi, decided to come to Migori after many years, right at the last day of our crusade, when the baptism was to be held, and was to use the same venue, Migori Showground. So, the Friday night, before his arrival we were not allowed to run the program at the stadium for the security reasons, and Sabbath morning which was to be an All Day Seminar, even though we had a written agreement, signed by the Town Clerk, approved by the DC (District Commissioner) and the Chief of the Police. I went there 4 months ahead to prepare the ground. But, when we have heard, mind you, a day before, that the President was coming I went to the DC with the Contract in my hands only to hear: "The President of the country is above the law!". There was no way out. They would not let us use any other place either. So, what do you do with 20,000 people? There was no way to inform them, except few of our members went there that Friday night telling people to come to the Central church that Friday night, and Sabbath morning, when the President was to be in town. What a confusion? Still, in spite of all this commotion we had over 5,000 people in the church, around the church and where ever there was any standing space available, up to the road side and beyond. The meeting went on. The same story occurred Sabbath morning, the day of baptism, which was to be held in the afternoon. But, since the President was to be at the Showground from 10:00 AM to 12:00 Noon, we have decided to go to the river immediately after the sermon and engage in the rites of baptism, so we can come back to the Showground for the afternoon meetings and the final evening meetings.
I wish you could have been there, to see people walking from the church to the river. 2.5 km. each way. The line of people was almost that long. It was an incredible sight. Thousands onlookers and 1,089 candidates, forming 9 lines for there were 9 pastors standing in the water ready to baptize them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. At the evening meeting the last altar call was made and 400 more people have decided to be baptized the following day and the following Sabbath. It was only yesterday that I have received the news from Migori that all those 400 were baptized. So, the total number for Migori, the town of 30,000 people. was 1,489 souls. Glory be to God! Praise His Holy Name! He has won the victory. A NEW church has been organized in Migori, called: "Wonders of the Past Seventh Day Adventist Church". They wanted to keep remembering the greatest Evangelistic Campaign ever conducted in this part of the world. Wonders of the Past is the title of our Campaign.
Arrival of the President of the country of Kenya;
When the baptism was over and we reached the town it was 3:00 PM. We have announced to all that our afternoon meeting will start at 3:00 PM. But, when we reached the main street of Migori people were thronging on both sides of the road, with innumerable police, body guards and detectives, and right at that time the President with all his dignitaries arrived. It took two hours for the celebration and the speeches, and by the time they have taken down all the things that were erected for his arrival and cleared the stage it was already 7:00 PM. So, finally we started at 7:00 PM with our last program. One interesting episode during the Presidential celebration was, when I went to take some pictures, and people recognized me they took me right in front where the police force was standing, one next to the other. A man in Pathfinder uniform was walking in front of me shouting: "Pastor Jakovac is coming" and the masses of people split to make the way for me to come in front. When I arrived in front a policeman, who happened to be an Adventist, asked me about the baptism and when he heard that in spite of all the difficulties 1,089 were baptized, he went and brought the chair and placed it on the platform and asked me to sit with the VIP's, among the members of the Parliament and the Senate, close to the President. Even though I did not want to go there, but because he insisted, and I felt it may be a blessing for many who were coming every night to our programs, I went and sat there during those two hours.
At the last Evening Meeting, when some 20,000 people attended, who have been standing for so many hours, and we made an appointment to see them all in the Kingdom of God, a live goat was brought to the stage as a present to us for bringing the Message of salvation to the people of Migori. A dedication of two babies born during the Campaign was conducted, for they were special babies. To remember the Campaign they named the girl Mica, after Mica Grozdic from Novi Sad, who was a member of our team, with many duties during the Campaign, the treasurer, cook, prayer roll coordinator and the sales person of the books, tapes, resumes, etc., and the other baby boy was named Stephen Jakovac. It all added a joy to all the difficulties we went through this crusade. What a joy when at the end we sang those three songs we thought them to sing; "Mungu ni pendo" (God is love), "In the name of Jesus we have the victory" and "Yesterday, today, for ever - Jesus is the same." I believe the whole universe was focusing on that evening meeting. I believe the angels were singing with all the people there. And when the last call was made and 400 more people made their decision to be baptized the following day or the following Sabbath it was just wonderful. Glory be to God for ever and ever!
The rest of the Evangelists;
This Nationwide crusade was divided into two sections; the first was with "Muzungus", that is how they call white colored people, and the second section will be by their own evangelists and pastors. Pastor Jim Zachary, coordinator with Pastor R. Folkenberg, has told me as we met before I left Nairobi, the capital city of Kenya, that over 20,000 were baptized by 100 guest Evangelists and now some 5,500 native evangelists and pastors will take over and there is no doubt that the numbers WILL exceed 100,000. Glory be to God! What a Campaign? All the white evangelists had similar experiences, obstacles, for our work was to take souls from the Kingdom of Darkness and transfer them into the Kingdom of Light. Of course, Satan did not like it, so he organized all his helpers to disturb and spoil our joy. But, he was not successful as he thought he would be. Jesus has won the victory.
First of all I would like to thank our Heavenly Father for a great success in Migori, for 1,489 new brothers and sisters, for the privilege to be a part of the greatest Evangelistic effort - Nationwide Crusade-in the country of Kenya, and for your prayers and support. We have felt those prayers for they were so much needed. I also would like to thank my team members, who for the first time in my work, were all from the former Yugoslavia; to Pastor Stevan Danji and his son Alexander of Novi Sad, Vojvodina; to Mr. Dobrivoje and Mrs. Mica Grozdic from the same city; to Ivica Prgonjic from Sacramento, USA; and to Tom Jakovac (my nephew) from Los Angeles, USA; who have worked tirelessly to make this Campaign , by the blessings and help of God, such a great success. We are looking forward to the next year's campaign and we know that you will stand with us - for Jesus and for the finishing of His work. Thank you so much.