Missionaries in Africa

Missionaries in Africa Bring Help and Hope

With 1.2 billion people living on the continent of Africa, more help is needed by those populating its 54 countries. Missionaries in Africa can bring the help, and more importantly, the hope these people truly need.

To address these pressing issues, it is important to consider the various challenges facing the continent. According to Global Young Voices, Africa’s top issues include poverty, poor education, ill health, violence, hunger, sustainable agriculture, nutrition and food security, access to financing and slow economic growth.[1]

The immense, growing population is severely taxing all resources in nearly every country on the African continent.[2] This is compounding problems that have existed in many of the countries for decades. Violence and corruption have led to unstable governments and infrastructure. Water resources are scarce and sparsely located.[3] Missionary involvement in Africa is needed now more than ever.

The first recorded missionaries to sub-Saharan Africa were in 1490, though Christianity had been in other parts of Africa off and on since 50 A.D.[4][5][6] Early missionary’s work was first and foremost about spreading the Christian faith. More recently, missions work has also taken on a humanitarian side. Christian missionaries in Africa long to bring the Good News of Jesus, as well as physical aid wherever they can as part of showing the love of God.

Long before any European colonization, missionary work in Africa often involved pioneering and exploring new areas that had not been previously seen or experienced.

“The London Missionary Society sent David Livingstone to South Africa in 1840, where he became one of the first Europeans to traverse the continent,” reports Ariel Marcus of Center for Research Libraries. “When Europeans began to colonize central and southern Africa toward the end of the century, international coordination featured prominently in both missionary and colonial projects.”[7]

Missionaries in Africa have a long history, mixed in with political ups and downs associated with colonization and exploration. That history, though full of tragedy and conflict, has yielded much fruit for the Kingdom of God. The continent of Africa has approximately 684,931,000 professing Christians.[8] Still, much help and hope is needed for this growing population.

In response to these needs, we felt called to seek God regarding ministry opportunities in Africa. God has recently opened doors for GFA World to expand into Africa, beginning in Rwanda.

This work in Africa will be based on GFA’s missionary model of raising up national missionaries from the countries where we serve. This has worked beautifully in Asia, where many countries do not allow missionaries from other countries.

Being able to train and commission a missionary from their home country has many advantages. First, it’s cost effective. GFA missionaries live very simply. Second, it’s compassionate in that a missionary arrives with the language and the culture already a part of who they are. Their ability to communicate in the most loving way possible is key to bringing the Gospel to people who may have never heard of Jesus Christ. With fewer cultural barriers, they can relate right away with those they are serving.

It’s possible to sponsor a GFA missionary for just $30 a month. Most importantly, once you as a sponsor receive the name and photo of one of these special missionaries, you can pray for them regularly, bringing them before our Father in heaven.

You can help GFA World expand into Africa with more national missionaries by becoming a monthly sponsor. Through your giving, these missionaries have the support they need to walk into places like the slums of Kigali, Rwanda, where some of the most vulnerable people in Africa live.

As the population of Africa continues to grow, more workers will be needed for the fields “white for harvest” (John 4:35). Please help GFA World continue to be positioned with national missionaries ready to bring physical helps in clean water, education, slum ministry, leprosy care and, most importantly, the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

In addition to your generous gift to support a GFA national missionary, please pray for those training missionaries and for those considering such training. Jesus said well that “the laborers are few” (Matthew 9:37). With 1.2 billion people on the African continent, there are many different languages and cultures. National missionaries from those cultures are needed to make a difference for God.

Be a Kingdom builder with Jesus through GFA World. Your prayer and support can change the face of a continent.

Learn more on women missionaries

[1] Boutros, Christina. “Top challenges facing Africa today.” Global Young Voices. https://www.globalyoungvoices.com/fast-news-blog/2016/5/5/top-challenges-facing-africa-today. Accessed November 26, 2022.
[2] Degn, Emily. “15 Facts about Poverty in Africa.” The Borgen Project. https://borgenproject.org/15-facts-about-poverty-in-africa. April 6, 2018.
[3] Ibid.
[4] “The Story of Africa Christianity.” BBC World. https://www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice/africa/features/storyofafrica/8chapter3.shtml#:~:text=In%201490%20the%20first%20missionaries,)%2C%20and%20baptised%20the%20King. Accessed November 26, 2022.
[5] “Missionaries in Africa.” Enclycopedia.com. https://www.encyclopedia.com/religion/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/missionaries-africa. Accessed November 26, 2022.
[6] Eusebius of Caesarea, the author of Ecclesiastical History in the 4th century, states that St. Mark came to Egypt in the first or third year of the reign of Emperor Claudius, i.e. 41 or 43 A.D. Meinardus, Otto F.A. “Two Thousand years of Coptic Christianity”, p.28. Accessed November 26, 2022.
[7] Marcus, Ariel. “CRL Resources on 19th-Century Christian Missionary Work in Africa.” CRL. https://www.crl.edu/focus/article/6696. Accessed November 26, 2022.
[8] “Status of Global Christianity 2021, in the Context of 1900–2050.” Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary. https://www.gordonconwell.edu/center-for-global-christianity/wp-content/uploads/sites/13/2020/12/Status-of-Global-Christianity-2021.pdf. Accessed November 26, 2022.