Liberian Now Blogs

 

Purposeful-PrayersHere are a few purposeful prayers we would love to have prayed over our time in Liberia. We can’t express how much your prayers mean to us! Much love and thanks!

1) Please pray for children of Liberia who need scholarships to attend school. Pray that God would use organizations like Liberia Now to provide a quality education for these children in need.

2) Please pray for the kids camp that will take place next week, that the sun will shine and that as it does that they will be reminded of God’s great love and plan for their lives.

3) Please pray for the Liberia Now school which is currently under construction. Pray for all the plans and resources needed to make this school a success when it launches with Kinder-3rd grade in 2015-2016.

4) Please pray for the City Church team that will arrive on Sunday from San Antonio as they will be ministering in a variety of areas from a Pastor’s conference, to the kids camp, to producing a health clinic assessment, to capturing video footage.

 

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Pastor-Gyamfi.png.opt311x311o0,0s311x311Introduce to us, your family.

Pastor Gyamfi: Ruth K. Gyamfi is my amazing and beautiful wife. She works at BIVAC a French company that is involved with container inspection of import and export in and out of Liberia. She is the manager for that section.

Roseline G. Sombai is my lovely daughter. She is the oldest and she studied nursing in college. Rose is a RN who works at the New Community Clinic, which we built for the Virginia community.

Rufus Yaw Gyamfi is my wonderful son. He is the youngest and is currently studying accounting and economics at the University of Liberia. He did graduate with a diploma in Computer Science at the International Institute of Computer Science and Manpower Development. But, he still seeks further education in the Information Technology section.

How is Liberia Now currently making a difference in the Lower Virginia community of 50,000 people?

Pastor Gyamfi: Liberia Now is making a big difference in Virginia by bringing hope for the future in so many ways. In the area of education, parents that did not have money to send their kids to school now are able to give their children a quality education. So many families are now benefiting because Liberia Now is helping to pay the tuition fees for those parents and children who wanted to learn but had no way to because it was beyond their reach.

In the area of infrastructure, Liberia Now has been able to construct and rehabilitate close to twenty water wells in various communities and now thousands upon thousands of residents have clean drinking water. In the economic area, Liberia Now has helped many people improve their lives through the micro-loan program. These micro-loans have helped many businesses to begin and some to even expand.

Gyamfi-family2Pictured above is the Gyamfi family in front of a
new medical clinic which is being built by their ministry.

In the area of health, the pharmacy that was established has served thousands of people by making affordable drugs available to them. In the area of spiritual renewal, the Liberia Now Pastors conference is making a major impact in the lives of pastors and wives. It is helping these spiritual leaders to understand their mission, their relationships with their families and to build strategies for the growth of these Liberian ministries. Liberia Now has been  such a blessing to so many people.

 

stats-for-webWhat are the two main challenges your community faces and what do you hope to accomplish through Liberia Now in the near future?

Everything we do is based on the spiritual foundation, which Liberia Now is bringing to our community. But the two main challenges we face are an economic crisis and lack of proper infrastructure in our community. Even with the current micro-loan program, many of the youth are still unemployed so we are praying for a change in that area.

The ultimate vision for Liberia Now is to see all these good things that are happening in Virginia spread to other communities throughout Liberia. The most important thing I hope to see in the near future of Liberia Now is for our school to be completed. We still need to help improve the educational system in our community and building a model school would make a big difference in the lives of many children.

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Pastor-Gyamfi.png.opt311x311o0,0s311x311Before Liberia Now even existed, you built a health clinic to service the community your church was located in. How did this come about?

Pastor Gyamfi: In 2002, on the 20th of January, the Great Commission Victory Ministries Int’l. was establish to win souls, plant churches, and seek to address the social, moral, spiritual and physical needs of disadvantaged people.

Our church was located in a community where no health center was nearby. Inhabitants of the community had to travel long distances to get medical attention. Some patients even died in route before reaching a clinic.

One day when we were holding a church service, one of our members, Mamie Massalay, became extremely ill. She was rushed to a clinic named Saco. When we arrived at the clinic, she was asked to pay $1000 Liberian Dollars (about $15 USD) which we didn’t have. We begged for treatment before payment, but the clinic wouldn’t treat her.

 

 

New-Community-Clinic2So, in 2005, we deemed it necessary to construct an eight-bedroom clinic to be able to run medical services to the community, due to our passion to save lives.

How did your church and Sammy Tippit Ministries (STM) connect?

Pastor Gyamfi: After the church was established in 2002, we started an evangelism program. We noticed that the membership was growing. We saw that we needed to expand the vision for which we were established.

We started searching for partners through the Internet to enable us to fulfill the task God had given us. In 2003, we went on Google to search for ministries who were interested in partnerships. We contacted eleven ministries, but by His divine grace only Sammy Tippit Ministries responded.

In June 2003, I received an email from Chris Dillashaw, who worked with STM, about the possibility of Dr. Tippit coming to Liberia. As a result, Chris and I planned to meet in Ghana in July 2003.  But right before we were scheduled to meet, the rebels began to attack near the capital city and the airport area. God protected me though and saved my life, as the rebels were only hunting down foreign nationals.

Liberian-refugees1On the plane though, I began to worry about my family, the church members, my community and friends. My wife, Ruth had a phone with her, so we used it to communicate. One day while I was in Ghana, she told me that many of the church members had run to our residence to seek refuge from the battles that were nearby. Ruth told me that there were 48 people now living in our home, including my family. My heart became extremely heavy.  Chris and I had the meeting and it was successful. Chris went back to America but I couldn’t leave Ghana. There were no planes flying in to Liberia at that time because the rebels had overtaken the airport right after I left for Ghana.

During that time, I stayed in Ghana for one month. Every day, I called Ruth to ask her how everyone was doing and to encourage her. One day, as I was talking to Ruth on the phone, she heard a heavy knock on the door. She told me that the rebels were at the door and that she needed to switch the phone off, hide it and call me later.

Thankfully, she called back later that night and told me that the rebels had made everyone leave the house while they looked for government personals and materials to loot. She told me that they we were robbed of everything but that their lives had been saved. Thanks be to God that my family and members of the church went through the war unharmed.

In spite of all these difficulties though, we were able to partner with the Sammy Tippit Ministries in hosting evangelistic meetings and pastors conferences in 2004, 2007, and 2009. God’s Word manifested greatly in lives for many individuals.

Gyamfi-Liberia-NowTell us about the origins of Liberia Now. How did this ministry begin?

Pastor Gyamfi: I’ll never forget the date. In  2008, on January 3rd, at 4pm Liberian time, I received a call from Dr. Tippit.  He told me that since he left Liberia in 2007, he had been praying on what he can do to help Liberia.  He said he was going to send his son with a team to do an assessment.

In late June, early July 2008, an assessment team consisting of Dave Tippit, Allyn Anderson, Pastor Brent Saathoff and Corey Winfield visited Liberia. Dave and the team met the Vice President of Liberia, Commissioner of Virginia, and the City Mayor of Brewerville. They had a series of discussions on how they could help Liberia develop and decided to begin in the area known as Virginia, where our church is located.

Prior to their departure, we had a meeting at The Cape Hotel.  In that meeting, both the Liberian and the Americans saw the immediate needs Liberia had. Both teams had a passion for Liberia. We felt that there was no time to delay so that was why one of the team members, Corey Winfield, proposed calling our organization Liberia Now.

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Pastor-Gyamfi.png.opt311x311o0,0s311x311Over the next three days we will profile Emmanuel Gyamfi, who is the Director of Liberian Operations. Pastor Gyamfi has shown himself to be a faithful steward and an exceptional partner. We hope you begin to get to know this amazing man and his life mission over the next few days.

What was your childhood and life in Ghana like?

Pastor Gyamfi: I was born into the union of Kwabema Gyamfi and Mary Adu Gyamfi in 1964. I lost both of my parents when I was very young. I did have an older brother, but he was also struggling and he couldn’t take care of me, so an Aunty brought me up.

I began my education in 1972 by attending a Presbyterian school. In 1978/79 I entered a well-respected boarding school for my secondary (Jr. high/high school) education. Due to the absence of my parents though, I didn’t have the money to continue my studies there and I had to leave the school dormitory and move back to Berekum to stay at my Aunt’s Residence.

In 1984, I completed my secondary education but  there was no means for me to go to college. I became extremely sorrowful especially when I saw my friends improving their lives and entering colleges. Sometimes I thought to myself, “if only my parents were still alive, I wouldn’t be going through all this.”

How did you come to Liberia then?

Pastor Gyamfi: Based on the circumstances surrounding my life, I found it very hard to stay in Ghana. Every time I think back on my days in Ghana, I grieve a little. So, I thought it would be wise to take a journey to another land, to have peace of mind. I came to Liberia in 1985.

Ghana-grungeWhen did you and your wife Ruth meet?

Pastor Gyamfi: When I came to Liberia I joined a church named Grace Pentecostal Church. Ruth was a member of that church and she was also a member of the choir. I was the Choir Director. I saw her good will, care and concern towards others and me. Sometimes she even provided food for me.  There was no doubt she was the right person for me. That was how we met in 1988.

How did the civil war affect you, your family and the Liberian people?

Pastor Gyamfi: In 1989 the Liberian Civil War began. We thought that it wasn’t going to last long. We thought it would end soon. But we were very wrong. The war lasted longer than any of us thought possible. During this time we were robbed of everything we ever had, in terms of our “material possessions”.

Liberian-warAs the war became more terrifying, living in our community was no longer safe so we had to leave. I saw friends die. Anyone could die at any moment. Even dogs had more value than humans at that time. I had never experienced something so terrible.

I couldn’t believe that humans could be so mean and cruel. I saw parents abandon their kids. There were times where we had to jump over dead bodies or run from one direction to another with bullets flying over our head. It was really a terrible time.

(Be sure to check back tomorrow to read part II of this profile)

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