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January to May 2020
News & Prayer Requests

January to May 2020
News & Prayer Requests

Dear friends and family,

We hope by the grace of God that you are well and safe from the COVID-19 pandemic. We would like to thank you for your support in prayer, your financial support, and your messages of encouragement.

Your prayers and gifts are impacting the lives of many Fulani in Burkina Faso and beyond. Because of your partnership, we are witnessing in our generation that Fulani are hearing the Gospel and coming to faith in Jesus Christ, and some are being trained as disciple makers to the Fulani!

By the grace of God, we and our church planting teams are well. We thank God that despite the ongoing security challenges now coupled with COVID-19, we are making disciples, baptising believers, planting churches, and seeing community transformation, to which we give God all the credit. As the word of God says: No one can come to me (Christ) unless the Father Who sent Me draws them... (John 6:44).

With gratitude we would like to acknowledge your generosity in giving for the fulfilment of each activity mentioned in this report.
A Fulani proverb says …



‘One finger cannot milk a cow’— we need all the fingers to work together!



Your faithful encouragement is ‘spurring us on to love and good deeds’ Heb. 10:23-24

The Impact of COVID-19

Here in Burkina Faso, COVID-19 restrictions have been in place since early March, however from early May some restrictions were relaxed. For several weeks our family couldn’t leave the small town where we live without a day pass from the Governor’s office for ‘essential’ business. We praise God, however, that the church plants are still able to meet in small groups as usual. Though travel was restricted, the church planting training at the Jam Tan Centre has been ongoing, apart from a few modules with trainers who were not able to come due to travel restrictions. The restrictions have had the added advantage for us to see an acceleration in emerging trainers & leaders taking on their roles.

The restrictions imposed due to COVID-19 in the countries where we work have caused general fear and an economic downturn. Poorer families, who depend on their daily sales to bring just enough food home for one day, have become poorer as they are unable to meet their basic needs. Even now that some restrictions are relaxed in certain countries, there are still positive cases of COVID-19 reported in all countries, so business is slow; it is a matter of huge concern for many as there is very little help for their need. Please pray and give to provide food for families, and particularly for people to reconcile with God through Jesus Christ in this critical time (John14:6).

Please continue to pray for the security situation that is continuing to cause harm in the Sahel countries. In the last few months in Burkina Faso terrorists have killed and displaced more people than have died from COVID-19. We praise God that even in the areas threatened by insecurity, church planters are witnessing to Christ and people are turning to Him.

In this school year we have welcomed as residents a number of high school and upper primary school children at the Jam Tan centre; schools are closed in their areas because of terrorism threats and attacks. All schools were closed mid-March because of COVID-19, and are not due to restart until the end of May, however the high school students at Jam Tan have not been idle, as they have joined in the vocational training at Jam Tan for the church planting training, and have benefited from the computer skills, tailoring, carpentry and hairdressing training also happening at Jam Tan.

We are grateful for your prayers and contributions, your donations have bought 11 tons of corn flour which we distributed on your behalf to 470 families in need from 24 villages near Jam Tan on May 10th. This distribution was witnessed and appraised by the Mayor of our near by town, Traditional Chiefs, Pastors and Immans. Praise God! Please see the video and the TV report under the picture gallery.

Training this year

We would like to thank God that we have been training Fulani Christians in discipleship, church planting and vocational skills for over a decade now; and sending these people out to places where there has never been a church before. We praise God that each year the number of trainees is increasing. This year we have 53 trainees; the largest intake of trainees we have had so far. These Fulani are emerging leaders from our church plants plus a few people from other denominations who expressed an interest in being trained.

We have increased the time of study from three to six months, in order to allow people to improve their vocational (tent making) skills. After the church planters are sent to the field, there are also refresher DMM trainings and vocational training skills from time to time. The skills we offer are: agriculture and animal raising, shop keeping, tailoring, restaurant, carpentry, hairdressing-barber, operation of grinding machines, and computer (secretarial) skills. This includes food, lodging, training materials, health care and mission trips. Also with your gifts, the trainees will be sent to their fields with tools to practice their trade: sewing machines, hair dressing/barber tools, goods for shops, carpentry tools, grinding machines, and personal support for the first few months of their ministry etc.

This year’s training started with three weeks of excellent practical training with electives in project management, business, tailoring and trauma healing, delivered by our ministry partners trainers. For many years we had taught aspects of these subjects at a grass roots level, but the team of trainers from our ministry partners brought additional expertise. This training brought extra confidence to those already engaged in these activities and gave them tools to organise and assess their work. Examples of this include:

  • Business Training participants were taught a number of basic skills such as having three ‘pockets’- Goods, Personal and Savings- for their funds and how to keep records. People who had been running businesses for years even though they didn’t have formal education found these practical skills very helpful.
  • Trauma Healing training helped trainees who had fled terrorist attacks or persecution let go of some of the burdens they were carrying.

M’s Testimony

M is an emerging leader in one of Jam Tan house church plants in the north. M, who has completed Koranic school, met church planter Y through the invitation of a man of peace to a DBS. Y and the man of peace discipled M who was so interested in knowing the Lord that he came frequently to Y’s shop to hear stories from the Bible. Y gave him an audio Bible in Fulani which he listened to faithfully.



‘I was previously nervous, bad tempered and frequently unhappy’ M explains. ‘A while ago I got a splinter in my toe while walking in dry stubble, and it became a festering wound which was destroying my big toe, despite having been to the clinic and healers. When Y started praying for me in the name of Jesus the wound started to get better until it is now healed. Also I couldn’t straighten my left hand, and it was painful. I still can’t straighten it, but now the pain is gone.’



As he grew in his relationship with Christ he felt healed from within, and started connecting more with people, where previously he spent much of his time alone. He was becoming, according to Y, a witness to his community through his increased confidence and peace.

Being from a conservative Muslim family where people are expected to perform their daily prayers, it was difficult for M; he was convinced that each time he prayed the Muslim prayers he was paying allegiance to Islam, so he decided to stop, and was finding other things to do outside the house at prayer time. His family and community then put pressure on him to recant, however he was encouraged to persevere by the support of the church planter.

M didn’t have any skills apart from being a shepherd, looking after cows, goats and sheep in the savannah. Y saw in him an emerging leader in his DBS group, and recommended him to come to Jam Tan. There, he is learning DMM and carpentry, and is making more friends. M longs for his family and community to know Christ. Along with 53 other trainees this year, he is being equipped to go to make disciples in places where there is no church.

Fruit among the Fulani

We are very grateful to God for the growing number of Fulani who are responding to the call of God to be witnesses of Christ among their own people. We have longed to see this for years, and we are privileged that in our generation we are seeing it happen.

H & J are new believers. Here is H’s testimony …



From a very young age I assisted my father, a Fulani muslim traditional healer, in black magic. My father was well known and even was consulted by political leaders. When I was a young man and active in political circles, I was poisoned by a political opponent who in fact was my uncle. My whole body was swollen and I found it hard to walk. Medical exams did not reveal any disease, and I was convinced that I would soon die, so I left home and traveled five hours by bus to stay with my older sister. One day a visitor came to my sister’s house. The woman was not a believer but encouraged my sister to take me to a protestant church to be prayed for healing. My sister eventually took me, early one morning so as not to be seen. At the church the service started, then before the time of prayer for healing someone prophesied about me ‘God has chosen this man to do His work!’ I received prayer on several occasions at this church, and noticed I was getting steadily better. It was during this time that I decided to follow Christ, and from then on I didn’t practice Quranic magic anymore.

When my father learnt that I had become a Christian, he sent people to make me recant, but they couldn’t force me; I had received my healing from the Lord and there was no way that I could turn back to Islam. As I still feared my father’s magic power, a pastor of the church sent me to another area. Here I was not among my ethnic people group, so no one opposed my faith. After nine months in that hiding place I had met a lady who I wished to marry, but the pastor who I was staying with advised me to fast and pray before making a decision. During this time of fasting I had a dream where I saw my wife, who I had left at home, riding a bicycle to come to see me, so I realized that I should go to get her rather than marrying a different one.

When I went back home, I had a heated discussion with my father, but in the end he said I should take my wife with me. My wife, meanwhile, had planned to run away with another man. My wife returned with me, but did not come to church with me and was still planning to run away. However after overhearing a pastor who was visiting me at home, my wife was convicted by the Holy Spirit and accepted Christ.



Eventually H trained as a pastor and spent several years leading a church, but not among his own people. Then God opened the door for H and his wife to start a new chapter in their lives.

H and J and their three children spent four months training at Jam Tan last year. Their children attended Jam Tan Primary school and preschool. H learnt to run a grain mill and mastered the trade well, and J learnt tailoring. We praise God for His generous provision of a grinding machine for H and a sewing machine for J as tools for their trade. At the end of their training Jam Tan sent them to a village in the South of Burkina that they had previously explored to look for people of peace. When H set up his mill the people in the village were very grateful as previously they had to go far to get their grain milled. His wife started to get some business making clothes for the ladies in the community. We thank God that they were able to identify a person of peace within two months, and they started a Discovery Bible Study with his family. They have seen people coming to Christ at the home of the person of peace. Now, by the grace of God, after ten months of ministry, there is a community of believers for the first time in this village.

Weddings 2020

In February we celebrated the marriage of two couples. One of the couples, B and N are together involved in youth and children’s work through sports. Pray that the married life of these young couples be a good witness to their communities.

After the weddings in February Boureima spoke with a number of couples in the church who had not had the opportunity to make their marriage right before God. As a result the church organised a wedding blessing for five couples. It was a special occasion for our church community; the couples looked very impressive as they came into the church in matching outfits made by the Jam Tan tailoring workshop for each couple, and the ladies had their hair and nails done at Jam Tan hairdressing workshop. It was touching to see how proud the couples were to exchange vows. Many people turned up for the wedding. Special guests included the couple’s friends from the nearby villages. They all had fun eating and taking pictures afterwards.

COMMUNITY HEALTH DAY PLUS

The Community health days we have been holding for several years have been gathering hundreds of patients each time. We do these events to display God’s love for people, and make health provision accessible to our rural community who would normally have to pay more and travel a lot farther to receive health treatment. Preparation for these events begins several months in advance, and depends on having funding for the event. Thanks to your generous gifts we have been able to hold community health days regularly over the years. We typically host 20-30 specialist doctors and nurses, and a number of policemen who come to establish ID cards for people. We often invite people to give advice to the community on subjects such as health, animal care, or road traffic safety.

These events have become more than just health days, they are something the community looks forward to. Some people from the village and nearby villages come with snacks to sell and set up a little market. Others dress up and come to catch up with friends or listen to the presentation by a visiting speaker. These events have enabled us to identify people of peace and we have been able to follow up these contacts.

Please pray with us for the next quarterly community day that we are planning for Saturday June 27th 2020.

RAMADAN 2020

This year Ramadan fell during the hottest time of year, when tempuratures reach over 40C during the day. We would like to thank you for praying for our cousins during Ramadan; some church planters have found people of peace during this month. Please pray that this will lead to true reconciliation and peace with God. Also some church planters fasted this month along with their community.

At the end of Ramadan, this year on the 23rd of May, Jam Tan joins in the celebration by cooking and serving groups of people from the village community a shared meal. Each year this is a great opportunity for bridge building among our cousins.

Please also pray for the ongoing security situation in our Sahel countries that has bereaved and displaced so many, and destroyed so much. In recent weeks there has been a surge in violence and some key towns in the North are seiged by terrorists. Our God is indeed able to restore the years eaten by the locusts. Joel 2: 25-32

Children’s and youth work

Persecution is common in Fulani families, and many young believers backslide because of this. Having some encouragement in time of need, and appropriate practical support, helps believers to grow in faith in Christ.

B, a high school student, discovered Christ when fellow students shared the gospel with her at school. She started to attend the Jam Tan church and asked for a Bible. As B is an orphan she was living with her Aunt; when her Aunt found that she was reading the Bible she threatened to kick her out of the house, so B then read her Bible secretly. B continued to receive threats, insults and humiliation, to try to force her to give up her faith. This situation started negatively affecting her school results and emotions. One day she spoke to us and asked if she could stay at Jam Tan. When we spoke to her Aunt she had no objections. Since coming to Jam Tan she has blossomed in her faith, she is witnessing to fellow students, and her school results have also improved. Currently she is facilitating a Discovery Bible Study group which is attended by girls, fellow students of her own age, many of whom experience persecution in the form of threats and insults at home also, so B encourages and advises them, and they also set up times to pray together.

SPORT MINISTRY

We are grateful to God for the growing sport ministry. The team is made up of young men and women all trained with Ready Set Go (Sport Coalition) in Benin. In partnership with sport coalition, an emerging leader M was trained for three months in various leadership skills in South Africa. He has developed the sport ministry in various forms, making disciples through various sport activities such as football practice and games, and running competitions. From time to time the team does sports games for younger children.

In March we celebrated the marriage of M to N, a young lady on the sport ministry team. Together they coordinate the Sunday school work at church. We have seen a number of people coming to Christ through the sport ministry, and we hope to extend this work to other countries of Africa in God’s time.

MEDIA

For some years now we have been involved in creating video and audio programmes with content such as teaching, preaching, interactive Discovery Bible Study and topical life issues. These have been broadcast on strategic FM radio stations, and one satellite TV. From time to time we receive calls from people who are listening and wish to follow Christ, which is very encouraging to us. We have also distributed some programmes on SD cards. In recent years, in partnership with others and your funding, we have been able to distribute audio Bibles and even, in faith, to begin the building of a recording studio. This will help us as up until now we have been renting time at various recording studios in the capital city. This is often time consuming, expensive, and sometimes studios are unavailable at the last minute. We hope that once the recording studio at Jam Tan is up and running, this need will be met. We have had great encouragement through the distribution of audio Bibles to church planters and disciples that, as they listen to the audio Bibles at work or home, others from the community may listen, too. In this way they can identify people of peace and follow up through a DBS. Finally, we are also looking forward to see how we can we can engage people on social media platforms, by producing appropriate programs for the purpose.

Ways to participate in our work

We are so thankful for your ongoing support through prayer and financial giving. Any amount helps in the work we’ve reported in this newsletter. Here is a list of the cost to cover specific needs and ministry. Please consider giving to one of these as you are able:

  • Your gift of $5 will buy a printed New Testament
  • $850 will house a church planter during their 6 month training. This includes food, lodging, training materials, health care and mission trips.
  • $200 will feed a family of seven for one month.
  • $1.700 will provide for a quarterly community health day when specialist Doctors and nurses come to a rural village for one day to treat hundreds of patients This includes: Medicines and medical supplies $900, hospitality (food) for doctors and some patients $150, transport of the team of the doctors and nurses $200, announcements in village markets and on FM radios two weeks prior to event $300, security $150
  • $650 will provide one hour of radio broadcast each week for six months
  • $11.000 will provide a drilled well for a village. This is a hybride well that comprises a larger place where cows/animals can drink and a solar powered water tower.
  • $110 will buy a bicycle for a church planter
  • $330 will buy a start-up kit for a tailor or a carpenter
  • $2.330 will buy a Grinding machine (including the construction of a small building to house the machine)
  • $450 will buy a start-up kit for a shop keeper or a small café/restaurant owner
  • $150 will provide a start-up kit for a Hair dresser
  • $250 will provide a month’s salary for a primary/preschool school teacher

If you wish to give for any of the above options, please send us an email to info@fulnet.org Thank you.

Discovery Bible Study:Psalm 91

  • What does this Psalm tell us about God and about Man?
  • Who is our protector and what does he protect us from?
  • How can we dwell in the shadow of the most high?
  • Who will you share your learning with this week?

Thank you very much for your prayers and support. We look forward to hearing from you.

Once more we would like to thank you for your prayers and for your partnership in making disciples and planting churches among the Fulani. May God bless you, we look forward to hearing from you.

Boureima and Susanna Diallo and teams

Psalm 46

For more information please contact us:

FULNET
09 BP 680 OUAGADOUGOU 09
BURKINA FASO
EMAIL: info@fulnet.org


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