Hery glared at the blank concrete prison wall. His life of crime was over, but not in a way that he had expected.
He was one of Madagascar’s most notorious criminals. His illegal record spanned years. Both the police and military had chased him as he evaded arrest—until they finally caught him.
Hery turned away from the wall in disgust and hopelessness as he considered his current prison surroundings and fellow inmates. There was no love, trust, or peace here. The inmates lived in constant fear of the guards and in suspicion of their cell mates.
So when an Assemblies of God preacher arrived at the national penitentiary the following Sunday and talked about a God who loved him and all of the prisoners, Hery was astonished. He had never heard this message before. The distant corner of Madagascar that Hery calls home is remote, and his people have little access to the gospel.
Each week in prison, Hery listened intently to the preacher and could hardly wait for the next Sunday. The Holy Spirit began softening his hardened heart until the day Hery was radically changed from a hate-filled criminal to a sold-out follower of Christ. While still in prison, he responded to God’s call and became an evangelist.
But his passion for Christ was not appreciated by either the guards or his fellow inmates. Annoyed by Hery’s desire to talk about nothing but Jesus,
prison officials sent a request to their superiors: “Get Hery out of here!”
In time, Hery was released from prison and able to connect with other Assemblies of God believers. Penniless after his incarceration, Hery needed scholarships in order to follow his longing to attend Bible school. With the help of friends like you, he received the scholarship funds. Hery completed pastoral training and returned to his home city where he is now planting churches among some of the least-reached peoples of Madagascar.
Malagasy people earn on average $4.50 per day from employment or farming income, which barely covers living expenses. Without scholarships, they cannot afford quality Bible school training. Few new converts have been called to ministry while in prison like Hery was. But many of his fellow islanders come to the Bible school in Madagascar with just a few dollars to offer for tuition, room and board. For them, their lack of finances is a source of shame and embarrassment, but they are confident in their spiritual calling and feel compelled to train for the ministry God has called them to do.
At this time a great number of men and women are responding to the call of God. We believe that Spirit-empowered, biblically trained leaders are the hope of Madagascar. But they must be well trained and equipped to lead the churches and foster spiritual health and continued growth.
Africa’s Hope believes strongly in the capacity of local national leadership. To positively affect change, we partner with the Madagascar church through investment in the training efforts of emerging leaders. Would you give at least $50 to scholarship one Bible school student in Madagascar for one month? You can scholarship a student for an entire year for $600.
Your gift will help cover students’ fees and enable the school to focus on the important work of training Spirit-empowered men and women to lead their churches. Our goal is $8,000 for the deserving students at the school. This is very important, and your help will be an incredible encouragement and blessing!
Please pray about what you are able to give this month. I thank you in advance for your gift and for your generous heart toward Madagascar.
Yours for an increasingly redeemed Africa,