Bahonda’s Quest

Bahonda’s Quest Bahonda Sandrine is a 23-year-old woman living in Pointe Noir, Republic of Congo, in West Africa. For years she suffered terrible headaches, at times so severe that she could not read, and eventually she was forced to drop out of school. She hated giving up her studies, which she saw as the only avenue to a better life. One of Bahonda’s classmates told her that the people of her church could pray for her headaches to go away. So Bahonda went to the church, where members prayed for her, but they prayed in a language she had never heard. At first these prayers frightened her, but she continued attending the church, and in time she began praying in tongues too. Bahonda’s headaches did not go away. In fact, one day while she was praying in tongues, she sensed that a spirit had entered her. She told the church members, and they prayed for the demon to leave her. As the people prayed, Bahonda became dizzy and cried out, “Jesus, help me!” Immediately she felt comforted. But when Bahonda stopped praying in tongues, her friends in the church turned their backs on her. Special Visitor Bahonda decided to ask her uncle, a pastor, about God and the issues that were troubling her. What he told her was so different from what she had learned in her friend’s church. Bahonda asked her uncle to teach her more about God. As she studied the Bible, Bahonda became convinced that the Adventist church is God’s true church. But one thing troubled Bahonda. There was no Adventist church in her city. She traveled to the national capital, Brazzaville, but she did not find a church building there either. The Adventists she met worshiped in houses and lean-to sheds in courtyards. Not one congregation worshiped in a church. Why No Church? Bahonda asked why God’s true church had no houses of worship. She learned that the church’s property had been taken during a time of war, and the church has no money to build even simple churches. Her congregation meets in a single rented room in a simple house far from any road. Bahonda has been an Adventist for four years. She has invited her friends to worship with her, but they come only once and do not return. Her friends suspect the church is one of many cults in Congo, and they are afraid to return. “You have a good message,” people say, “but your church building is not good. When you have a real church, then I will come. I won’t come while I am ashamed of the church.” They like their own churches better. Bahonda would like to have a proper church to which she can invite her friends to worship without fear that they will think the Adventists are a cult. The 500 other Adventist believers in Congo would like to have churches too. Our Thirteenth Sabbath Offering this quarter will help build up to three churches in the Republic of Congo.

Bahonda’s Quest

Bahonda Sandrine is a 23-year-old woman living in Pointe Noir, Republic of Congo, in West Africa. For years she suffered terrible headaches, at times so severe that she could not read, and eventually she was forced to drop out of school. She hated giving up her studies, which she saw as the only avenue to a better life.

One of Bahonda’s classmates told her that the people of her church could pray for her headaches to go away. So Bahonda went to the church, where members prayed for her, but they prayed in a language she had never heard. At first these prayers frightened her, but she continued attending the church, and in time she began praying in tongues too.

Bahonda’s headaches did not go away. In fact, one day while she was praying in tongues, she sensed that a spirit had entered her. She told the church members, and they prayed for the demon to leave her. As the people prayed, Bahonda became dizzy and cried out, “Jesus, help me!” Immediately she felt comforted. But when Bahonda stopped praying in tongues, her friends in the church turned their backs on her.

Special Visitor

Bahonda decided to ask her uncle, a pastor, about God and the issues that were troubling her. What he told her was so different from what she had learned in her friend’s church. Bahonda asked her uncle to teach her more about God. As she studied the Bible, Bahonda became convinced that the Adventist church is God’s true church.

But one thing troubled Bahonda. There was no Adventist church in her city. She traveled to the national capital, Brazzaville, but she did not find a church building there either. The Adventists she met worshiped in houses and lean-to sheds in courtyards. Not one congregation worshiped in a church.

Why No Church?

Bahonda asked why God’s true church had no houses of worship. She learned that the church’s property had been taken during a time of war, and the church has no money to build even simple churches. Her congregation meets in a single rented room in a simple house far from any road.

Bahonda has been an Adventist for four years. She has invited her friends to worship with her, but they come only once and do not return. Her friends suspect the church is one of many cults in Congo, and they are afraid to return. “You have a good message,” people say, “but your church building is not good. When you have a real church, then I will come. I won’t come while I am ashamed of the church.” They like their own churches better.

Bahonda would like to have a proper church to which she can invite her friends to worship without fear that they will think the Adventists are a cult. The 500 other Adventist believers in Congo would like to have churches too. Our Thirteenth Sabbath Offering this quarter will help build up to three churches in the Republic of Congo.

June 01, 2004 / World Church
Share