March/April '22

We were truly privileged to help three new missionaries adjust to living and serving in Nigeria last year. In 2022, the Lord is adding a fourth couple, this time from Vision Baptist Missions. Graham and Olivia Young, along with their Africa field director [all 3 pictured at our Abuja airport], took their survey trip in early March, and they are planning to move here fully in July. They have been blessed during their deputation process, and we are thrilled about having them here soon to begin working with us.

Our independent Baptist movement in Nigeria has an interesting history in that the first churches in the late 70’s and early 80’s were planted by Nigerians who trained in American Christian colleges, raised their support in the U.S., and returned to their home country to eventually become “patriarchs” for dozens of missionaries and pastors who would follow their lead. Over the years, God has given me the privilege to befriend, serve with, and be influenced by these seven founders in various ways. In the middle of March, I was given the high honor of being the funeral service preacher for Dr. David Jacobs, who ended his 80 years [burial picture below] on earth in January and left behind four strong churches, numerous graduates who were mentored by his teaching, and a wonderful family with five children. Even though he had already been serving here for 25 years before our arrival, Dr. Jacobs greatly intreated me with opportunities to preach his first church’s anniversary service, to train one of his preachers at our college, and to join us for a recent seminary commencement. He was truly “apt to teach,” and I join others who will miss his great spirit and inspiration.   

In early April, both churches in which our family are involved honored us with special services for Joseph. In anticipation of us bringing him back to the U.S. for college, our deacons and pastors had a “send-off” prayer over our first-born at the end of the morning services on the first two Sundays. Joseph was showered with gifts [pictured] and well-wishes, and our whole family felt truly loved by our members. On April 12th, our family departed Nigeria for a four-month furlough. We will attend three graduations in May, and much of June and July will be spent visiting family and helping Joseph to settle in for life in America. For now, his plans are to live with Sabrina’s mom and attend a local community college in the fall. 

January/February '22

With this ministry update, I am completing 20 years of writing prayer letters; we sent out our first mailing four months before starting full time deputation. Throughout our initial two years of fundraising and communicating in the U.S., we made it clear that our goals were ministry training and church planting, but we certainly could not predict that we would be able to report that 47 churches have now been started through those trained in our ministry. 12 more potential church planters [pictured bottom] received their degrees and diplomas as Providence Baptist College & Seminary conducted its 7th Commencement [pictured above] in January, bringing the total number of graduates through our institutes and college to 160. Missionary Evangelist Curtis Hall of BEST Missions did us the honor of being the keynote at the graduation, held at Truth Baptist Church, and then preaching a Missions Sunday [handbill pictured] for Grace & Glory Baptist Church. 

Bro. Hall also helped us to put on the first of six Soul-Winning & Leadership Conferences planned for this year. Independent Baptist Church of Calabar welcomed 18 different ministries for their semi-annual Sunday through Wednesday meeting. In February, Missionary Evangelists Jim Belisle and Don Wattenbarger [pictured] conducted a Pastors and Workers Conference in Ogbomoso. There is no host church that works harder than Faith Baptist, and they always have the most preachers present. Lastly, our Truth Baptist Church in Abuja held the 13th Annual Soul Winning & Leadership Conference with both guest preachers. We were thankful to have about 35 churches represented, and, unique to this year, each session was interpreted into both sign language and Hausa. 

Right after Christmas, I traveled with our co-pastor, Adewale Adesina, to conduct the funeral service of a trustee and founding member of Grace & Glory Baptist Church. The family was very happy that we were able to make the flight and additional two-hour drive into Abia state for the burial. That weekend, I had the privilege of preaching at a fairly new church plant of one of our graduates. Then, Pastor Thomas Adesoye gave me the honor of preaching at his Grace Independent Baptist Church in Uyo. Finally, it was a joy to visit the home villages of Truth Baptist’s co-pastor [pictured] and his wife, Bro. and Mrs. Emmanuel Okoh, before flying back the next day.  

November/December '21

As is the case with many of our prayer letters, this one begins similarly with a report of two successful Soul-Winning & Leadership Conferences in Port Harcourt and Ibadan. Evangelist Jeff Walters flew directly to Port Harcourt and preached for the Maskeys [pictured below] on the last Sunday of October, while Evangelist Craig Bryan arrived in Abuja for his first visit to Nigeria. Bro. Bryan preached in both churches where our family is involved, and then we traveled together for the conference in the southeast region. Upon their arrival back to Abuja, Bro. Walters and Bro. Bryan conducted an Open House [pictured] for Providence Baptist College & Seminary. They preached and presented their ministries, and then we had a special time of prayer for the ongoing work on our dormitory building. At both conferences and during the Open House, Bro. Bryan enjoyed meeting the pastors whom he helps to support through the Ron Middleton Missions Outreach, which not only partners with us in church planting, but also has contributed greatly to our building program and assists an orphanage with whom we are associated.

A unique aspect of having our ministry in the capital city is that the great majority of our members are not from Abuja. Therefore, we do not host many funerals here; instead, the church will normally send representatives to the home village of any of our members who have passed on. So, when one of our trustees unexpectantly passed away in August, our church was shaken, but we were also thankful to be able to honor Dr. Wole Ajayi’s life in November at the church where he was a founding member and served faithfully for several years. On the night before the burial, a touching service of songs was held with plenty of singing, moving tributes, and messages by two pastors from Ibadan (where Dr. Ajayi also had filled the office as a trustee in two different churches). I had the honor of preaching the funeral service at Grace & Glory Baptist, and then we went with the family for the internment at a cemetery in town. Many thanks go to our co-pastor, Bro. Adewale Adesina, for his communicating with the family and officiating ministers, printing of programs, setting up at each venue, and planning of the orders of service.

In late December, after a two-week delay because of Covid complications, we were thrilled to welcome Caleb [pictured on institute advertisement] and Emily Christiansen with their daughter Emma. They’re the last of three missionaries that we’ve been expecting to arrive this year. The Christiansen family reached in time to take part in our traditional family activities of opening presents on Christmas Eve, a special Christmas Day service at Truth Baptist, a few days of recreation at a local hotel, and a New Year’s Day fellowship for Grace & Glory Baptist.

September/October '21

During our 17th year of service in Nigeria, we continue to see encouraging firsts throughout our ministry. On September 16th, 25 pastors joined me to dedicate with prayer the first-ever fully equipped production studio [ribbon for our independent Baptist churches in Africa’s most populous nation. Christian Media International raised the funds and sent a representative for the setup; then, a pastors’ fellowship [pictured left] was planned at Independent Baptist Church of Ibadan with singing, preaching, testimonies, and prayers. Announcements were made to let the preachers and church workers understand that the studio was for them to use media to get the Gospel out more effectively to their area and around the nation.
In October, Daniel [pictured with converts for baptism] & Erin Lang, along with their two children, became the first FBMI missionaries to arrive to Abuja since our family came in June of 2005. They have already found a home in the same estate where we reside and will be working with our staff at Truth Baptist Church until they start a ministry of their own. Missionary Lang has been preaching at our seminary chapel, participating in soul-winning and visitation, and speaking in TBC’s weekly youth meeting.
Since our inaugural enrollment in 2009, October of this year was the first time that Providence Baptist College & Seminary welcomed such a large group of new students. Our biggest-ever student body of 26 undergraduates includes eight young men beginning their first semester. The orientation had been delayed for nearly two months because of our building project, but all the seminarians were excited to see the progress. The second floor of the dormitory has been completed, and enough rooms on the ground floor have been restored for accommodating the students. At the time this letter is being written, we have started extending the pillars and constructing the walls [pictured] to reach the roofing level while we are trusting God for the remaining $25,000 that is needed to add the actual roof. For more information, go to  

We were pleased to witness both a Vacation Bible School and the last of our three 2021 Student Missions Institutes for Training in Evangelism conducted successfully at Truth Baptist Church in September. 42 churches total were represented by the 241 youth who attended the three SMITE camps in Nigeria. 55 bible clubs were conducted, 2607 children were enrolled, and 1540 were saved! We also had nearly 40 young people graduate from the four-year child evangelism training program.

July/August '21

Miraculously, we are well on our way to pulling off six pastors’ conferences, three youth camps, and two seminary semesters in 2021. The fourth of our scheduled Soul-Winning & Leadership Conferences was successfully held during the second weekend of July. Our assistant pastor, a deacon, and Ms. Pat Hamburg joined my whole family and Missionary Evangelist Don Wattenbarger of Bibles Beyond Boundaries for the second-ever SWLC in Jos [handbill pictured]. Multiple pastors and staff members came together for the preaching services, teaching sessions, and an introductory meeting to plan a full-time institute for Hausa-speaking pastors and their members in the region.  

Many of our supporters continue to ask about how the worldwide talk of vaccines and restrictions is affecting Nigeria. Thankfully, there have not been any new protocols, and the only major challenges to our ministry are some lingering effects of the changes to the school schedules from last year, which impacted the attendance at our three S.M.I.T.E.’s this year. We were thrilled to resume the Student Missions Institute for Training in Evangelism in Ogbomoso, and I was honored to preach their first graduation during the first week of August. 86 students registered, and 14 young people received four-year completion certificates on the last evening of the five-day camp. It was our privilege to host Missionary Evangelist Denton Bell of International World-Wide Evangelism to preach at both of our Abuja churches on the weekends before and after the 7th Port Harcourt S.M.I.T.E. Bro. Bell and I traveled together to Port Harcourt where we both preached multiple times to the 58 young people who enrolled [Bible club pictured]. Evangelist Tunde Ajayi conducted a Bible club Blitz in Ibadan with several S.M.I.T.E. graduates during the week between the two camps. I will share the totals of the camps and the blitz after the conclusion in September of our Abuja institute, which we delayed because of our building project.

Also in August, we celebrated the arrival of the first of four new missionaries, all coming fully in the next twelve months, who will work with us in some way as they get setup in Nigeria. Garan and Anneliese Patrick [pictured with Calabar pastor and wife], serving with Baptist International Missions Incorporated, will be ministering alongside Pastor Adewale Adesina at Grace & Glory Baptist Church while working with our college students and getting experience in various other ministries. Already, they’ve secured an apartment, purchased a vehicle, and processed necessary documents for becoming residents of Abuja. 

The Truth Baptist Church property has taken on a new look, as pillars were added and a foundation was poured [pictured] for the second floor of the Providence Baptist College & Seminary dormitory. Information about the project can be found at, and we covet your prayers, as more funds are needed for the walls and roofing. Simultaneous to that, we are continuing the development of our City of Refuge project, working towards the completion of the property fencing and a kitchen and toilet building.

May/June '21

The month of May allowed me the first opportunity to be a part of two of the six pastors’ conferences that we have planned for this year (I missed one in February before we returned to Nigeria). Truth Baptist Church hosted the 12th Soul Winning & Leadership Conference with nearly 35 pastors attending [pastors' wives session pictured at our home], many bringing workers and preachers from their church with them. Missionary Evangelist Jim Belisle’s 10th visit to our work proved to be the most urgent one for us as he was the only invited guest preacher who was able to have a valid visa to make it out here. The Pathfinder Foundation, started by Grace & Glory Baptist Church’s co-pastor, Adewale Adesina, honored Bro. Belisle and me (along with Ms. Pat and a few former missionaries) with plaques to commemorate our years of service to Nigeria. Our mission board’s Field Service Coordinator and I then flew to Aba for the third conference to be held in that city and the first hosted by Faith Baptist Church, started by Missionary Ken Gill close to 25 years ago and pastored for nearly 15 years by a faithful national pastor and friend. We had 18 churches represented in this three-day meeting, and all three area pastors surprised me with honorary plaques and gifts of clothing from their churches.
Exam week for our seminary was immediately before our Abuja conference, and, the week after, all but four of our students traveled for internships at various independent Baptist churches. This allowed us to begin the project of adding the second floor to our dormitory rooms. As I write this letter, the roofing has been removed, new pillars are in place, and the pouring of cement for the decking will begin soon. We have updated the page that our mission board had started for this fundraising opportunity: Please visit and consider helping us with the remaining balance that is needed to do the walls, windows, doors, and new roof. 

As the seminary continues to grow and our students get more and more opportunities for evangelism and service in the local area, the need for a van has become more essential. With the favorable exchange rate recently, I believe that we could buy a very reliable 18-passenger “bus” at around $10,000. We would greatly appreciate your prayers and potential assistance towards this additional project for our schools that have now been a part of producing nearly 150 graduates who are serving all over Nigeria, West Africa. 

March/April '21

Our ministry was happy to welcome in March a guest preacher for the first time since January of last year. Pastor Dan Callaghan of First Baptist Church of Yuba City, California, preached Truth Baptist Church’s 6th Spirit Renewal Meeting. The revival services included a greatly needed and well-attended Saturday teaching, soul-winning, and testimony time; Grace & Glory Baptist hosted the Sunday evening preaching hour, and the combined service received many of our Truth Baptist members and college students. Having kept in touch with Bro. Dan since we were bus workers together in Bible college, I was glad for our whole family and many co-laborers to finally have the chance to fellowship with my good friend.  

This seems to be the smoothest transition back to the field we have ever experienced. We want to thank God for blessing our return, and we also wish to give credit to our church leaders and college staff members for skillfully handling all our ministries. A special thanks goes to Missionary Pat Hamburg [pictured in our kitchen], who stayed in our home during our time in the U.S., welcomed us with wonderful meals during the first few adjustment days, and generously put time and money into numerous thoughtful projects that put a smile on my wife’s face. 

Four days after our arrival in February, Merci Cepeda and Kristin Muldrow landed in Abuja for a nearly six-week visit. Our oldest son and daughter, Joseph and Victoria, were traveling partners with them in Louisiana on a Bible club blitz team for a few weeks last summer. Merci and Kristin conducted Bible clubs [pictured], helped in children’s church and Sunday school classes, sang specials, participated in our school ministry, brought gifts for a visit to an orphanage, and helped to fund a widows’ meeting hosted by one of our deacons. Two weeks of their trip were spent at A Place Of Hope Africa, a large orphanage home in the East.  

I had imagined that adding the second floor for our seminary dormitory would be the only big project for this year, but the Lord has seen fit to put the following additional new works on our ministry plate over the last twelve months: a continuing television ministry with Christian Media International, a fully-sponsored prisoner discipleship ministry, a new day school at Truth Baptist Church, the Friends of the Deaf ministry that just celebrated its first anniversary in April, and the growth of our last church plant (Liberty Baptist of Azunu) which Truth has adopted as its own like no other new church before. We are blessed beyond imagination!

January/February '21

 I am writing this letter having my whole family with me in Abuja. We had several delays in our return due to required tests for travel, but, thankfully, we finally arrived on February 19th. The longest furlough of our ministry was fruitful on both sides, with several goals accomplished in the U.S. and our work continuing to mature in Africa. 

On January 20th, the first day of class was held for the new semester of our Providence Baptist College. We welcomed four more students for a total of 23 men that are training for the ministry; in addition, there are 14 enrolled in Temple Baptist Institute. This is the first time that I have ever missed back-to-back orientations for our seminary, yet it is so rewarding to see our faculty and staff work together to make the classroom teaching and student activities successful in my absence. From the beginning, an inspiration for our training center was Blue Mountain Baptist College in Ogbomoso. In January, Blue Mountain’s founder, Dr. Solomon Owolabi [pictured], went to Heaven. He was truly the patriarch of our movement in Nigeria, and I was privileged to call him a friend, mentor, and co-laborer.

In 2008, when we held our first Soul-Winning & Leadership Conference (SWLC), there was no other annual multi-day pastors’ meetings of which I knew in Nigeria. In 2019, we held six SWLC’s, and they have been conducted so far in 9 different venues. We can now see that at least four churches would be determined to continue these annual meetings even if an American missionary were no longer there helping to host them. The strongest of these four is Faith Baptist in Ogbomoso, led by Missionary Pastor Timothy Ojo [pictured with his daughter at our 1st SWLC], which conducted their church anniversary and three-day Pastors & Workers Conference during the first full week of February while I was still in the U.S. Missionary Evangelist Don Wattenbarger of Bibles Beyond Boundaries contributed toward the feeding of the delegates, and our ministry made sure that all the attending preachers received boxes of Bibles and New Testaments. We are grateful for our partnership with churches like this. 

We are glad to report that we received donations and purchased new motorcycles [pictured] for the three ministries mentioned in our previous prayer letter. Please pray for us as we progress through adding a second floor to our seminary dormitories. Updates for this building project can be found at Thank you for your investment in prayers and finances for our work.

November/December '20

The first three weeks of November were full of activity as I rounded up a month-long solo trip to Nigeria. On the 1st, I preached in special services at three churches in Ibadan for an ordination, an  anniversary celebration, and the kickoff to a revival meeting. That Tuesday, a Pastors & Workers Fellowship was conducted, and over thirty preachers [pictured] each received boxes of John/Romans, New Testaments, Bibles, and Gospel tracts. The week before and after my Ibadan trip gave me the chance to teach a full course in our Providence Baptist College & Seminary. 

The 3rd Regional Soul Winning & Leadership Conference [hosts and speakers pictured] miraculously took place at Independent Baptist Church of Calabar on November 15-18. This conference was postponed in May because of restrictions; violent protests shook the area in October, and a curfew in the city was lifted just days before we arrived. The Lord blessed with another ordination service launching the special meeting, a record number of pastors attending from the region, several in the host church proclaiming that it was their favorite conference, and each church represented receiving boxes of scriptures and resources from a container that had been cleared last year. The Friday before flying back to the U.S., I enjoyed hosting the seminary students [pictured below] at our home for supper and testimonies with the help of our single lady missionary, Ms. Pat Hamburg (she has a new update that I will include with the email of this prayer letter); this time of fellowship has become a tradition to which all of our students look forward. Both congregations at Truth Baptist and Grace & Glory were happy to see me on the 2nd and 4th Sundays. Grace & Glory planned an Encouragement Sunday with refreshments and an afternoon service; during the Holidays, this church had a record Sunday evening attendance for its first-ever Christmas Chorale concert. Of course, our members long to see my whole family, and we now have our paperwork complete for all of us to return to the field together in January. 

Thankfully, after three itinerary changes, I was able to make it back to the U.S. in time to celebrate Thanksgiving with my family and my father-in-law’s family in Houston. The Christmas week was commemorated by a couple of get-togethers with relatives of my mother-in-law, and that weekend was a nice time to be with my mom, my brother and his wife, and our sending church. A special Sunday before Christmas was enjoyed in Maine as Sabrina and I were able to “get away” to meet the family and sending church of Caleb & Emily Christiansen, who will be working with us long-term starting at the end of next year. 

Our supporters have been so kind to meet this particular need for other preachers in the past, so I feel confident in presenting it again. A pastor who recently started a third-generation church needs a motorcycle to be able to conduct an institute there, and another pastor overseeing two churches could use an “okada” for his works. Our recently formed deaf ministry has two seminary students serving fervently, and a motorbike would aide in their visitation efforts. A new quality motorcycle costs $600 and would be a great blessing to these worthy servants. 

September/October '20

This letter is being written during a month-long solo trip to Nigeria for the purpose of getting all our resident permits renewed (a process that, in previous years under normal circumstances, I would have been able to complete from the U.S.) so that we may be able to fully return as a family during the second week of January. While here, I’m conducting two Soul-Winning & Leadership Conferences, preaching at both of our Abuja churches, and teaching a course in our Providence Baptist College & Seminary. 
Our travels in the U.S. continued to be productive in these fall months. During a Midwest trip, I gave a chapel testimony at my alma mater and preached part of the midweek service at the home church of our mission board. Also in September, our family participated in two missions conferences in Colorado and Wyoming; Sabrina’s mom joined us for one and accompanied us for a three-night vacation in Yellowstone National Park [pictured above]. The remainder of my meetings were all in the Southeast. At our sending church on my last Sunday before this trip to Nigeria, Sabrina and I had the special privilege of hosting a family who were founding members of Grace & Glory Baptist in Abuja, and after the morning service, I baptized their son [pictured]!

Soon, we will have the opportunity to broadcast the Gospel on television in the southwest part of Nigeria. Through a partnership with Christian Media International, a half-hour-long weekly program is being produced and aired in Ibadan. We will have more news to share soon and would appreciate your prayers for this important project. 

We would not be able to testify of forty-two churches being planted (by those who have been trained in our institute and seminary) without help from some individual churches and support through ministries like Omega. We are thankful for their vision concerning the Great Commission and for their trust in our family to help them carry out that mission. For more information on how you can partner with them to plant churches around the world, please call Pastor King of Wyldewood Baptist Church at 920-420-0035. 

To request our new prayer cards, please contact me at We look forward to sending more good reports from the field soon.  

July/August '20

Our family has been amazed at the opportunities we have had for both recreation and ministry during the recent nationwide lockdowns. At the beginning of July, it was miraculous that a family camp was able to be held in Branson, and our whole crew had a wonderful time. The remainder of our travels during these two months were all in Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama, and mostly at supporting churches. Many of the pastors I contacted were just happy to have a guest preacher for the first time in several months!  In the third week of July, Sabrina’s home church put me to work driving in the mornings and afternoons and arranging evening activities for the Bible Club Blitz team that represents the Summer Missionary Institute for Training and Evangelism. Joseph and Victoria also traveled with the team to Lafayette and Coushatta (both in Louisiana) to help them conduct multiple five-day Bible clubs and an evening Vacation Bible School. 

Even with the restrictions that were placed on our city during the last few months, a new ministry started in Truth Baptist that is being called Friends of the Deaf. Already, numerous deaf adults have become faithful to the church services through the efforts of two of our newer seminary students along with the counsel, advice, and participation of a national missionary to the deaf who recently relocated to Abuja. Additionally, several of our church members are taking advantage of the opportunity to learn sign language through this needed ministry.   

At the end of August, I flew to Charlotte for a special meeting with West Park Baptist Church in Rockwell, North Carolina, the home church of the Ron Middleton Missions Outreach [brochure pictured below]. Evangelist Craig Bryan memorialized his missions-hearted good friend through this great ministry that is now supporting six of our national church planters, assisting an orphanage with which we partner, and kickstarting a building project over which we have been praying for years. During my weekend there, both the church and the outreach generously contributed significant funds toward putting a second floor on our Bible college dormitory. You can see details of that project at, and you can find out more about partnering with Evangelist Bryan for church planting around the world by contacting him at

May/June '20

On Friday, May 8th, my family boarded (what has been up until now) the last flight out of Abuja, arranged by the United States embassy. There were stops in Togo and Liberia and an aircraft change in Dublin, making the trip duration a full twenty-four hours. Once we arrived in Washington, D.C., a rental vehicle was arranged, and we drove to Chattanooga, Tennessee, for two nights. Our family was thankful to have some time to ourselves to  overcome the jet lag. By Monday evening, we were safe and sound at my mother-in-law’s house in Denham Springs, Louisiana. The Lord arranged the timing for me to see my dad’s older brother on the way to Louisiana, and, just days later, I officiated his funeral [my brother and cousin pictured at the memorial service]. We were expected to stay at home for the first two weeks, and everyone is symptom-free. My family would like to relay a special thanks to friends who responded to our Facebook and email messages concerning the evacuation flight; the money was raised to pay the unexpected expenses, and Sabrina’s home church has already determined to help us with our return flight to Nigeria, hopefully in the middle of October. 

Already, our family has been able to see plenty of relatives and take part in several furlough events that we had previously scheduled. We traveled to East Texas at the end of May for a missions conference in Gladewater after taking some time to visit my father-in-law (and an aunt and uncle) in Houston. I had the privilege of preaching at our sending church on the third Sunday after our arrival, and, in June, I did pulpit supply at Sabrina’s home church in Baton Rouge [family singing pictured]. Another “home” church for us is Temple Baptist in Gulfport, and, in the beginning of June, I had the opportunity to preach in their Jubilee for the first time. The month of June rounded up with our three oldest children participating in the Summer Missionary Institute for Training and Evangelism in Milldale, Louisiana [introducing the Christiansens to SMITE]. I had the honor of preaching Monday night and leading music Wednesday night at the camp that “started it all” for us (Sabrina and I officially met at SMITE in 1997; it was our first meeting on full time deputation in 2003, and we have now conducted 20 SMITE’s in Africa!).

Because there has been very little testing accomplished in Nigeria, it is uncertain how much the country has been affected by the coronavirus. Grace & Glory Baptist had not been able to meet since March 22nd, but they finally resumed Sunday morning services on June 14th. Truth Baptist never stopped holding church services, and they utilized house fellowships for those who could not logistically get through the travel restrictions to attend on the church property. One of those house fellowships (started in our deacon’s home) has recently become our newest church plant (now meeting in the chief’s palace!); please pray for the new Azunu Baptist Church. Plans are in place for our Temple Baptist Institute to resume on August 1st  and for the students to return for another semester of Providence Baptist College & Seminary on September 2nd.