Month: April 2017

Meet Abass from Sierra Leone, Africa

Meet Abass from Sierra Leone, Africa

Written by Elmer & Joann Reifel

Dear Friends & Family,

Several months ago we promised to familiarize you more with our well team members.  It seems to me that we got a little side tracked and here we are in 2017 already!  We are going to start with Abass Fofanah, our Well Team Leader.

Abass is 29 and was born and raised in Mile 91, about one hour west of Bo, where we live.  He is the third of six children and was forced to stop schooling in Class 3 (primary levels) due to the War in Sierra Leone.  When the rebels attacked Mile 91 his family was scattered in the bush and his mother was captured by them.  He and a friend named Joseph, whose sister was also taken by the rebels, decided to ‘infiltrate’ the rebels in an effort to free their family members.  After some time they were able to create a way for Abass’ mother to escape but it was almost six months before they found their own escape in the Hastings area, closer to Freetown. Unfortunately, Joseph lost his life to a land mine while trying.

Abass found himself in Freetown, a street boy– no home and no family to go to for some time.  He connected with those who stayed in an area he referred to as ‘the Dockyard’ where many displaced people lived.  At some point he left when cholera broke out.

He was able to learn construction work and save money so that he could go back to school. By this time he was older so he skipped a few grades intentionally and enrolled in Class 6, which he said was a struggle, but he was able to catch up.

In 2004 he learned that his father and family were staying with an uncle in Rokopu so he was able to see them, but he continued to work and to go to school until he sat his WASC (the final exam to graduate from ‘high school’ in Sierra Leone) in 2010.

During the construction work he met John Campbell and joined a well team. From that first well team he met us and eventually became our well team leader.

His wife lost a baby in 2014 so he was a VERY nervous father-to-be in 2016 as she carried their second child.  While I was visiting family and friends in December/January, his little boy “Elma” was born.   Baby Elmer (pronounced Elma) is doing very well.Abass

The most difficult aspect of well drilling for him is either too much rock in the soil or what is called ‘collapsing’ soil, which fills up the hole faster than it can be dug out.  This happened to our third hole in Wonah, causing some MAJOR extra work.

The part of well drilling that he enjoys the most is when the four inch pipe has been secured into the hole and the men have ‘clarified’ it— because at that point he knows that this well is going to be DONE.

Abass is a strong character and a hard worker but he does not appear to be in complete fellowship with Christ yet.  He believes in God, as many do, but the relationship with Christ seems to be missing right now.   Pray that he will be able to commit himself to the Lord “one hundred percent” (his favorite phrase)!

We invite you to partner with us in our Ministry, donations can be made by going online to: cinami.org/reifel

also check out the amazing “Clean Water” video on this site.

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Presidents Blog – April 2017

The greatest time of the year is upon us for this is the time we celebrate the death and resurrection of our Savior, Jesus Christ.  Without Easter we have no eternal hope as humans.

Hebrews 9:22, declares; “…everything is purified with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins.”   Jesus died a painful death on the cross as he shed his sinless blood to cover the sins of the human race from Adam until the last human is born.

Does this mean that everyone goes to heaven since their sins are forgiven?  Absolutely not! I John 1:9 says; “…if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness (sins).”   We must ask God to forgive our sins then Jesus shed blood on the cross is activated on our behalf and we are forgiven. Not only forgiven but guaranteed eternal life.  This is the amazing hope of the Easter Season.easter

So many individuals believe God is unloving if he allows only the forgiven into heaven.  This is so untrue, as it is the individual themselves that chooses not to confess their sins and ask forgiveness from God.  See John 3:16 says; “For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.”

God’s Word in II Peter 3:9 says; The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.”

So the greatest day of the year is when we celebrate the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.  All other religious leaders who proclaim to be God or the voice of God are dead and buried and they have returned to dempty tombust from which they came.  Jesus is God and he is alive and His Spirit dwells in every person who has confessed their sins and asked Him for forgiveness.  Praise the Lord.

This is why we sing the Hallelujah Chorus, we will reign with him for all eternity.

Christians in Action Missions International was founded on the vision and goal of sharing the hope of eternal life found in the forgiveness of our sins.  60 years later in 2017 that vision and goal has not changed.  Thousands come to Jesus through the confession of their sins and receiving Him as their savior as our missionaries and indigenous pastors share John 3:16.

Blessings,

Dr. Gordon Donoho, President