SC 2012 Ghana Team
Francis Cobbinah

Well I am going to start this off with a story that is so clear even now though it happened on Sunday.

After church when i was done preaching me and my translator left the church. We were the only group who caught a cab to get to church that morning so that was where we were going when I asked him if we had time to street evangelize. He called his brother Robert and asked how much time we had. He said a minute to get in a cab and head back to the church. So we proceeded to head to the main street to catch a cab. We walked by maybe a dozen people and then we saw a group selling candy and I asked again if we could evangelize. In Ghana a minute does not really mean a minute. I do pretty well in this country because although i don’t want to be late I would rather finish what I start and be late then leave something especially the people of Ghana when i have a chance to speak about God. Well we went through the normal few questions I usually ask and then i started giving them encouragement. When we finished and i prayed for them a young boy came up to me and said “aubronie,” which means white man, “someone is calling you. Someone is calling you.” It happened to be Francis Cobbinah who is a lame man who has not walked for two years. He was so happy to see a white man stopped to talk with him he had tears in his eyes when he started to speak. It broke my heart to see his little house and the spot where he sat ever day watching people pass by his place daily. He said he had seen me that morning but decided not to call for me but when he saw me again he had to call for me. We have been praying daily to see this man walk, we are going to him tomorrow or Friday because that will be the last time we will be here to street evangelize. I just ask you to pray that God shows us a miracle like in Acts and Francis walks again. Thank You

On another note I rode in a Ghanaian taxi, quite the experience getting back because when we hailed the taxi 5 other people hopped in it so me and my translator George decided we would wait for another. The taxi driver wanted to i guess drive a white man around so he proceeded to kick out everyone in his cab to allow me and my translator to ride back to the church. I thought this was funny, they really do see us white people as important and something to brag about to their friends. i have many more cool stories like the time I was asked to and played soccer on the golf course. I asked our bus driver Anthony after so many people wanted to take pictures with us at the beach if we could basically do anything because we were white, he laughed and said yes, we pretty much could. Its interesting being seen like a novelty item, but since Ghanians have such a hard time finding work and making money, i can go over this subject in more depth if you ask, some Ghanians expect us to buy their stuff and to give them money when they see us. They see a white man so they think he must be rich. My bus driver says that many people make less then 100 Ghana Cedas in a month, which is roughly 50 dollars American, working 6am-8pm. when i told him i could make that in one day it blew his mind. The economic situation is worse then in America, they do not have minimum wage or a very good infrastructure like we do. many of the places we go to are very cheap forms of housing, most have a dirt floor and a thatchy roof, some are unfinished concrete compounds, but God has been graceful and blessed pastor Daniel with a gorgeous house he can house his family, us, and his wife’s sister’s family. we all took pictures of the house so when we get back we can show you how much of a blessing it has been to be here. It has put a lot of things into a different perspective to me. the motto for these weeks have been to not take anything for granted. Last night Robert while he was praying thanked God for not charging us to breath oxygen. That is a profound statement that opened up my eyes to the things we take for granted. Ghana has broke my heart, and built me stronger and hopefully I have conveyed that message to you.

Thank You,

Kevin Burgess

Presby! Presby! Presby!

Hmmm where to start… I will tell you about the second night we went out on the streets to evangelize. The first stop we made we talked to three girls that were maybe a couple years younger than me. I felt led to talk about my relationship with Brock, it was a really cool experience to be able to witness with Brock by my side. We talked to several other people as well but our last group was the one that struck me the most. We stopped at a stand that had about 10 kiddos Pastor Sally got all of their attention then Brock started preaching a simple message of Salvation. The longer we stood there more and more kids showed up. I’m gonna guess that there were probably 25 maybe more kids there! And they all said the Salvation prayer! I pray that they all grow into strong soldiers for Christ. :)

Like Brock said, we went on a canopy walk and that was just down right amazing, beautiful, adrenaline rush, etc. Dad you would have thought we were all crazy for even thinking about walking on that bridge, but I loved it! We went to the place where slaves were held, beaten, abused, then either sold or killed. That was a really sobering experience. Some say you can still smell death at the Holocaust Death Camps, well I felt I could still smell death in this place.

Preaching and worshiping on Sunday was a great experience. I cannot describe the joy I had while worshiping God. I had no idea what they were singing but I was sure dancing. :) I preached on the topic of worry, something that I have been doing a lot these past 6 months. By the grace of God, I think I was able to reach a few people including myself.

So on Sunday night we got to go see Takoradi, Anthony took us to the beach to get a glimpse and we ran into some pretty cool people. One woman came and talked to us and wanted to know what we are doing here and what churches we go to at home. This is where my title comes in… As soon as I said I am Presbyterian like 2 other ladies heard me and got really excited and started chanting PRESBY PRESBY PRESBY! I thought that was really funny. After that we ended up stopping on the side of the road to change a tire and like Brock said I had a very heart breaking experience.

Monday night we got the privilege to share our testimonies with the International chain of Women’s Aglow. The Holy Spirit was truly there it was such a blessing. We were all asked to give a short version of how we came to know Christ then Kevin and I shared one of our biggest challenges. I felt led to talk about Grandpa Kroll. It was a beautiful thing, all the ladies prayed over us when we were done. 

There is more but I have already written a book, So I will talk to you all soon.

love, Kara

Too Many Things To Name

Hey folks,

Been a while since I have posted and there has been so much going on here in Ghana that it has been almost too much to pick a particular area to talk about. The one thing that has for sure been true since our arrival here in Ghana is that in one day God always finds a way to make an impact on the people while making an impact on us as well and change us for the better. It has truly been an amazing experience that I have been so fortunate to be blessed to have. God is gooood! At this point in time the only thing that I know what to write about would be the things that have impacted me the most in the last 4-5 days since I last posted.

The first thing was the Cape Coast Castle on Saturday that held the slave museum, I did not know too much about this time in history so it was really sobering to learn about the slavery that took place at that castle and to see artifacts from the treacherous things that were committed unto the slaves. On Sunday I had the chance to preach to a branch church for Pastor Daniel, Kara and I preached at the same church and we felt like our messages were impacting people in the congregation which is a blessing, because neither one of us knew what to talk about until the day before and God just laid it on our hearts.

The next thing that impacted me was that night, we ran into a man that started talking to us as we were seeing the sights of Takoradi. He ended up talking to Kara and he told Kara some pretty heartbreaking things. To sum up what he said, he told Kara that Jesus did not love him, Jesus died a long time ago and He is no longer here and the man then told Kara that he loved her and she was his savior…… Very heartbreaking, and this episode left all of us on the trip deeply saddened. Prayers for this lost man are what is needed and they would be greatly appreciated. This made me come to the realization, there are people back in the States are under the same circumstance as this man and it breaks my heart because these people also need to know the love of Jesus and find salvation in Him so they can have eternal life. The final thing that has impacted me was this Wednesday morning, we talked on a broadcast radio show that was broadcasted across the whole country. We were able to talk about God’s love on the radio show and we felt it was the perfect topic for us as that is the reason we came to Ghana. We were able to come up with awesome questions that in turn allowed us to have a further understanding of what true love is and what it means to truly show that you love someone. It was a very impactful night and morning. Praise God for He is doing amazing things here not only with Ghana but with us as well. God Bless and Love You All!

-Brock

akey, aha, adwe…..akey, aha, adwe
Repeat this ten times and you will know how to say Morning, Afternoon and Evening in Fante! We received this wise lesson from Pastor Daniel yesterday and we’ve been working diligently on our Fanti ever since.

This is only day 6 and the team has already seen God do great things here in Ghana. Whether its giving us the words for our street evangelism and sermons or opening people’s hearts for the gospel to soak in. Today we were dropped off at four different branches of Grace and Faith Church to give our sermons; I had the privilege of going with Jared as we went to the same church to speak. God truly was present, as we spoke. I didn’t use my written sermon at all when speaking and the fans made sure I wouldn’t when they blew my papers off the podium and down the stairs. This is just one among many great experiences/stories we’ve had so far and I’m sure the best is yet to come!

I feel blessed to have been a part of this trip with such an awesome team, and I’m here to report that God is working in Ghana!   -Austin

Nyame mba

Mema wo aha! (Good Afternoon),

Nyma mba, God’s Children, are everywhere here in Ghana. Today we were each given the opportunity to preach the word of God in one of four different churches. The churches that we spoke at are all extensions of Grace and Faith which was founded by our contact Daniel Akuoko. Austin and I teamed up at our church to give separate messages over Matthew 6:25-34 and Romans 8:28-39. At first we were both very nervous. After all, it was our first time preaching, let alone speaking to a large group. However, as soon as we arrived at the church and stepped inside all of our doubts and anxieties were washed away and replaced with an overwhelming experience to just preach what was on our hearts. The Ghanaian people absolutely astonished me with there passion for worship as the entire service was literally a non-stop praise fest. They stopped only to listen to our sermons, taking notes as we spoke through the interpreter. Dancing, clapping and praying aloud to God filled up the rest of the time. Back home at my church and from past experiences at other churches in the U.S one of the more quiet moments of a service is the offering… that is not so here in Ghana. During one of the worship songs a small pillar was placed up front and one by one they danced up and dropped their offering in to God. They were truly giving to God. 

You can feel God’s presence here in their churches. His Holy Spirit is working everywhere. Through us, our interpreters, the local pastors, the faithful believers who donate their own time to evangelize on the street and the children. This is a very faithful and strong country.

 -Nyame nhyira wo

  God Bless You,

  Jared

God is Working!!!

Hey there folks,

It has been awesome teaching at the school for the last couple days. I am teaching 3rd grade and I 2 kids in the class, a pair of twins named Daniel and Daniella. They are awesome, their teacher Emmanuel is awesome too!! I have connected with him already just in the time I had with him today. It turns out that Emmanuel is 21 and was born the day before me on October 23, it was quite the surprise.

We are about to head out onto our second day of street evangelizing, last night was awesome, Kara and I witnessed a family of 7 be saved. We then headed off to the family to I spoke to. It was also a family of 7, and the father was named Benjamin. I started witnessing to them, and it turned out that they were already Christians and encouraged us to keep doing what we were doing!! It was awesome. I had no idea what to say to them, but God gave me the words to speak and I told them part of my testimony in connection with the story of Jacob and Esau. It turned out to be exactly what they needed to hear and we then prayed for them and headed off for the night. We are about to head off for our second day of street evangelizing in roughly 10 min.

Keep praying that God will keep working and changing the hearts of the people of Ghana to keep bringing more people to His Kingdom!! Thanks folks,

Your Brother In Christ,

Brock

Nyame do wo

God Loves You,

We are enjoying ourselves in Ghana. It has been really interesting and different but the Love of God is here, we have the best host family and translators, teaching has been interesting comparing the students to how we used to be, they understand that knowledge is power and have a burning desire to learn. When break is over they know and they tell us they want to learn. i just spent about an hour or so learning how to speak Fante one of the 50 or so dialects that are spoken in Ghana. Last night was the first night of street evangelism where I went out with Robert one of our translators and we spoke to 6 Muslim’s all who had questions about the bible. One man was searching really hard and had all of the information that he needed yet he lacked faith in Christ, he was blind to the truth because he does not have Jesus. I would like you to pray that he accepts Christ because he would be a great witness where he is. We had a great first day, and a great half day, pray for us as we are about to go out on another street evangelist excursion. Pray that we will have to right words to say, that we will pray boldly for those who need it, and we will be a great witness for God.

Mada se,

Kevin Cofi Burgess

The Holy Spirit is here!

Thursday June 8th was our first day to teach at Grace and Faith Primary school. I was nervous before because I didn’t know what I would be teaching. I am teaching P1 or 1st grade there are 4 kiddos in my class. The more I started teaching the more comfortable I got. I feel so blessed to be able to say that I have taught in Ghana Africa! After class we all went down to see all the other kiddos and that was an experience that is hard to describe. The children are so happy we are there I think I had at least 5 or 6 kids around me at every second chanting pick me up! pick me up! I love these children! We also went out on the street to evangelize and that was an amazing amazing experience. Brock and I went with Pastor Sal, a pastor at another village church, the first family we stopped to talk to had 3 adults and 4 children. I was the first to testify I hadn’t really had anything specifically planned to say so the Holy Spirit was definitely there. All 7 of them said the salvation prayer with us. It was a beautiful thing. Grandma Kroll, you helped me with that one. :) I will let Brock tell you about the second family we talked with. All the other guys had a great experience evangelizing as well. Please pray for all of the people we talked to and will talk, that they will keep an open heart to God and continue to grow closer to him. God bless! love you all, Kara

Finally In Takoradi

After a long 8 hour ride over the Atlantic to land in Frankfurt, we caught our connecting flight to Accra, the capital of Ghana yesterday.We were then welcomed by our contact Pastor Daniel by him saying “This is Ghana!! Welcome to Ghana!”; it was quite funny and has just stuck with the group in this short amount of time that we have been here in the country. We spent the night in Accra, and let me tell you what it was interesting trying to shower as I am 6’1” so I am not that short and due to their being no wall adapter to hold the shower head up and the lack of water pressure I had to squat almost the whole time I was showering. Then this morning we headed off to our final destination of Takoradi, the drive was really interesting as I saw many things that broke my heart but also gave me a lot of adrenaline rushes. I saw just how poor 3rd world countries actually are, and until you have been in one you truly just do not understand how lucky we are to have all the things we have in the U.S. on top of that I saw 1st hand just how crazy Ghanian driving is, and lets just say after today I no longer think people who drive in Houston are crazy.. To end the day we got to check out 1 of the 4 stadiums that Africa used as host stadiums in the 2010 World Cup! It was awesome!! Tomorrow we get to head out to start teaching the little kiddos (k-5th) and do street evangelism. Super pumped as well as nervous but ready to go!! God is on our side so we will get everything we need to accomplished. Until next post folks, Goodnight, good morning, or good afternoon depending on what time you read this and Love you all!

-Brock

THIS IS GHANA!

Our plane landed in Accra last night at about 6:45 Ghana time, we all made it through customs really smoothly and met up with Pastor Daniel, Robert, and Frederick. One of the very first things he said to us was “THIS IS GHANA!” “Welcome to Ghana” ever since then whenever something interesting happens we say that. We made it to Takoradi after a long and very interesting day of traveling. The drive to Takoradi from Accra was about 4 and a half hours long so we got a good taste of how Ghanians drive. :) We made a stop for lunch and a rest at this beautiful little park and restaurant. We played a little pick up game of soccer and I think Kevin surprised pastor Dan with is good soccer skills. We also got to catch a glimpse of the stadium that held the World Cup in 2010, that was pretty darn cool.  I truly feel so blessed to be welcomed into the family by Pastor Daniel and everyone here, we are in great hands. Tonight we rest, tomorrow we go to the schools to teach K-5th grade. I am so excited to work with the kids.  I love you all :) -KARA