From Sunday School to the Samburu

Carey Baptist Church, Reading is the sending church of F*, who has recently joined a TIMO team working amongst the unreached Samburu people. Co-pastor, David Magowan tells us of their journey alongside F*.

A young boy listened intently as his Sunday School teacher spoke about her experiences growing up in Tanzania, and talked enthusiastically about world mission. One of the church’s missionaries at that time was Veronica Hindle, working with AIM at Kijabe Hospital, Kenya. Thus was sown in F’s* heart an interest in mission that has grown and now blossomed into full-time service amongst the unreached Samburu people in northern Kenya.

“F* was always thoughtful in Sunday School – he wouldn’t just offer his opinions, he would think things out carefully. His quiet determination and godliness in the face of life’s difficulties always impressed me.”
Sheila Stephen Sunday School teacher

F* grew up in Carey Baptist Church, Reading. As our name suggests, we’re a church with a strong, active commitment to mission: we currently have members serving in Poland, Peru, Ghana, India and Italy. After graduating from Nottingham University, F* spent seven months in Kenya on AIM’s Synergy programme, teaching at a local school. Back in Reading, he obtained a PGCE and taught in a local primary school. In 2009, F* spoke to one of the church pastors about his desire to be involved in longer term cross-cultural mission, so we sought opportunities to test his gifting and suitability. In 2011, he was appointed as the international apprentice at Carey BC. In this role, F* taught at the church’s English language school, organised an international Bible study, visited internationals in their homes, and met with individuals for evangelistic Bible study and discipleship.

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Throughout this time, F* was mentored by pastoral staff. As his future plans began to formulate, F* met with the church elders and the church’s mission committee. Last year, with the church’s support, he applied to AIM to join a TIMO team and to undertake short-term studies in mission at All Nations Christian College. As one of the church’s pastors, I met separately with AIM personnel, Peter Root and Steve Lancaster, to discuss F’s* application. The AIM assessment was rigorous and considerable time was given to interview F*. At his final interview, I played an active role in the assessment process, as part of the panel, and was involved fully in the ensuing discussion and decision.

As a church, we’ve been very impressed with the AIM application process and AIM’s close communication with us as F’s* sending church. We have a real sense of being in partnership together with AIM in supporting F* as he embarks on TIMO.

* F’s name in this article has had to be removed for security purposes. Following the conclusion of this two year TIMO team, F has gone to work in a creative access location with AIM, and continues to be passionate about sharing the gospel with those yet to hear.

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