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Mozambique is once against facing difficult times, and here Inge Michel and Angelika Maader share about the challenges the country faces and about how INTENA (Instituto Teológico Evangélico de Nampula) Bible college is seeking to support and equip pastors to lead the church in the midst of these challenges.
In the last 20 years the gospel has borne fruit in Mozambique, but challenges still arise. How can the many new and small congregations find strong spiritual leaders? How can churches and Christians face the challenges of corruption, economic suffering and civil war here? Can theological training have a positive impact in the churches and for the country?
Serving the Lord
During INTENA’s graduation ceremony in 2016, Abel, who was graduating at the highest level, gave a very clear testimony of what God had done in his life during his four years of study. At the end of his testimony he called his wife Catarina, his fifteen year old son and his ten year old daughter to join him at the front. Together they proclaimed Joshua 24:15, “But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord!” This family’s declaration of faith touched many listeners. Two months after graduation, Abel started teaching classes at INTENA. Three and a half months later he and his wife were involved in an accident. Waiting at a traffic light on their motorbike, they were hit by a lorry from behind whose brakes had failed. Catarina went under the tyres. That she is still alive and is recovering from the accident is God’s marvellous hand at work. Abel stays at home caring for his wife. As we visited them, they both referred to Joshua 24:15. “God has called us to serve together. He will us carry through this difficult situation as a family, all the glory belongs to him.”
To share Christ
INTENA Bible college seeks to impact these areas through mental and spiritual transformation. The leadership and the teachers trust that the college will have an impact in envisioning, renewing and enabling the church to join in the Great Commission (Matthew 28:18-20). Our vision focuses on the big need to equip leaders in existing and established churches and support those serving in newly formed churches among recently reached people. The vision focuses on equipping these leaders, who have the potential for profound impact into different societies, to share Christ and pass on Christian ethics and morals. We’re training leaders to go, and to mobilise others, to reach those who have not yet heard the gospel.
Equipping to serve the unreached
It’s for the purposes of reaching the unreached that INTENA was born. Back in 2004, in the Nampula province of northern Mozambique, no further theological training (other than small scale discipleship) programmes existed. In the midst of economic development and an increase in general education, Mozambican pastors of various denominations expressed the desire and need for more, and higher, theological education in order to be better equipped to serve the church and reach out to their unreached neighbours. Those pastors, alongside AIM missionaries including Inge Michel and Angelika Maader, began that work of supporting the church through INTENA, a new Bible college.
Mozambique is in the midst of a difficult and turbulent time. But whatever lies ahead, please pray for the Mozambican pastors, that they would stand sure in their faith, equipped to teach and train in righteousness. Pray that the Mozambique church would be strong in faith and knowledge of depth of insight, and that the gospel would continue to bear fruit.