It’s often in the hardest and darkest places of our world that we see the gospel flourishing. When civil war broke out in South Sudan, many were forced to flee their homes to the refugee camp of Kakuma in neighboring Kenya. It’s in this place of more than 50,000 displaced people that William (pictured below) is using a soccer ball to share the gospel message of hope.
William’s testimony is remarkable in that he himself came to know Christ through a soccer ball and a Sports Friends-trained coach called Wanyama. Wanyama had been struggling to plant churches for many years, until he discovered sports as a way to connect with the community. With just ten soccer balls and a great faith, he was able to plant five new churches in South Sudan. During the unrest, these churches were relocated to the refugee camp in Kakuma (along with Wanyama and William) where Sunday services now take place under the shade of a large tree and Wanyama and William disciple members using the platform of soccer.
It’s uncertain whether William will ever be able to go back to his home in South Sudan, but he dreams of one day returning as a sports minister; using a ball to take hope to those who are living and dying without a gospel witness. For now at least, his ministry ‘field’ is the refugee camp of Kakuma.
Update: We recently held a Sports Friends training inside the refugee camp to equip 70 new coaches from the five church plants. Pray that these new coaches would be salt and light in the refugee camp and back in South Sudan if and when the Lord allows them to return home.
For just $75, Sports Friends can train and equip a coach like Wanyama to reach out to young people like William. Will you help us train and send out thousands of new coaches as agents of God’s love and hope into the hard places of this world?
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