Malawi Background

Malawi is currently the only country where resident missionaries still reside. Alan and Sandra Skene have been in Malawi since July 2000 and have seen God working in the country in miraculous ways, on their arrival in the country there were already around 200 churches established.

Their main work therefore, has been to develop the Pastors/church leaders both on a spiritual and administrative level and ultimately to bring them to the point of being able to run the church without the presence of a missionary. A lot of their time is taken up with training on various levels – eldership, ladies’ training, Sunday School teachers, Bible teaching and visiting the church branches all around the country. Some are in towns and cities but most are in villages, the Sunday journeys can be anything from one to four hours travelling time!

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Eastern Europe - Special Report

Andrew Jenkins is currently the longest standing member of the ActionOverseas Board having served for 10 years now.

He has a huge heart for world mission and holds a special role on the ActionOverseas Team.

Prior to entering church ministry he trained in structural and mining engineering where he worked in the industry for 18 years, 14 of them underground. God had his hand on his life even then as the Lord knew his future 'mining career,' would be searching and finding treasure in the many underground churches throughout the world.

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Pastor Andrew is married to Joyce and has two married children and a granddaughter. Joyce has certainly been a blessing in Andrew's ministry, as he has benefitted from a very high level of support, which has enabled him to fulfil the varied expectations and frequent periods away from home which his unique ministry has brought.

Although much of the year is spent travelling, Andrew does pastor churches in South Wales and the West Country of England, he is also mentoring 4 young men for future church leadership. He carries the title of Mission Liaison Officer, whose job it is to represent ActionOverseas throughout the UK churches and other organisations. This role is vital as ActionOverseas exists due to the financial giving of churches and church members. Presentations, advertising mission work, planning and enabling exhibitions to take place, and advising on short term mission opportunities are all part of his role.

Along with this Andrew is also the ActionOverseas Special Envoy, facilitating leadership training and structure for the Apostolic Church in Pakistan and Sri Lanka. He is currently exploring new opportunities in Latvia and Romainia and is continually working with international partners in a peace making capacity.

Andrew's passport holds an impressive record of countries he has both involvement with, and positive links for the advancement of the gospel: Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Latvia, Romania, Vietnam, India, Poland, Brazil, and Hungary to name just a few. Many times his work has placed him in situations where he has had to rely on God for protection, his faithfulness and desire to reach into these dark areas, placing him in dangerous situations. Stepping out in faith definitely came with the job description.

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In addition to his specific role with ActionOverseas, Andrew has also experienced working with people and agencies following disasters such as the 2004 Tsunami, the Pakistan earthquake in 2005, and the floods also in Pakistan in 2010. The success of the Lotus School following the floods has partly been due to the support that Andrew has given, in what has become known as the most dangerous place on earth.

In his spare time, not really sure there is much time for that though, Andrew enjoys cycling, rugby and football, although more as a spectator now.

He has a great sense of humour and is able to 'break the ice' in any situation! He has a warm character that brings people together. All qualities that God uses in the ministry which Pastor Andrew has been called to.

Malawi Profile

Malawi is a densely populated country with little development; there are cycles of drought then heavy rainfall. Aids is widespread. The country is heavily dependent on agriculture and so particularly vulnerable to global markets and local weather.

76% of the country are Christian and 16% Muslim with the remainder being other faiths. They live peacefully together and although the country faces challenges, Christian ministry and national development continues to develop unhindered.

However training for pastors and workers is desperately needed in order to meet the needs of the rapidly growing churches. Financial provision for students is paramount as they are unable to pay for theological training. The grip of poverty also hampers development in terms of education, family life and discipleship. The role of missionaries in Malawi is still greatly needed in order for the country to cope with the serious challenges the future may bring.

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