Sierra Leone Mission to The Gambia
The Wesleyan Church of Sierra Leone’s (WCSL) leadership team believes there is every need for the church in Sierra Leone to grow beyond its own borders to spread the gospel. The Sierra Leone Church has established over 300 self-governing, self-propagating, and self-supporting churches in Sierra Leone. Although the church is still expanding within the country, there is need to reach out to other countries to live out the Acts 1:8 scriptural mandate.
As Sierra Leone is the first Wesleyan mission field in Africa, the WCSL leadership team believes the church should be forerunners in the area of missions. By making missions a priority, WCSL hopes to inspire other regions that became Wesleyan mission fields after Sierra Leone, including Nigeria, South Africa, Ghana, and Liberia, to also send missionaries into other mission fields as God would lead them. As a mature, established church, WCSL has well-established administrative structures befitting this endeavor, including the manpower to reach as many mission fields as God would lead the church should finances be available to do so.
The WCSL is considered to be a parent church in the subregion of Africa in terms of its maturity and leadership role. Other Wesleyan churches in the subregion are in constant touch with WCSL for guidance and advice when needed. This leadership role will be fully complemented by a program to send missionaries out of the country.
The first phase of the project is scheduled to last for four years, with a goal to reach sustainability during this period. The second phase of the project will include continued mission work so long as sustainable mechanisms are put in place. During the first phase, a reconnaissance team will be sent to The Gambia for two years, at which time a detailed survey will be conducted and a comprehensive report submitted. The outcome of the survey will determine how, where, and when the mission field commences. The mission worker will be expected to visit his home country on vacation at least once in the year until the completion of his assignment. An office space with appreciable office equipment will be provided. A motor bike will also be assigned to him for ease of movement, especially in hard to reach areas. A detailed plan of personal witnessing and evangelism, including the establishment of home cells, will be carried out. The missionary will endeavor to take the gospel to as many homes as possible—in cities, in towns, in villages, and all over the mission area. This will require long treks and miles of travel. The use of the JESUS film will be very instrumental in this process.
In many countries education and medicine have opened doors to the gospel and paved the way for the church. As part of this initiative, the reconnaissance team will identify viable educational and health programs. As finances are available, these programs will be implemented. This holistic approach will be the guiding strategy for the spread of the gospel by reaching the whole man with the whole gospel. This approach has worked well in Sierra Leone, and the WCSL hopes to successfully implement it in The Gambia.
While the WCSL has been strongly inspired to take up missions as part of its strategic plan for the next four years (2018-2022), the cost of implementing this mission requires additional fundraising outside the scope of the current WCSL budget. A detailed budget covering the all phases of the four-year plan has been created with the WCSL committing nearly $24,000 USD to the overall budget of $133,000 USD. Therefore, it is hoped that through this project, $27,175 can be raised each year over the course of the four years.