African nation's Baptists stirred to advance Gospel

IMB missionary Barbara Singerman, in a photo prior to her recovery from injuries in a March 2018 auto accident, speaks with an Ayizo woman while writing down symptoms during a medical clinic in Benin. The clinic's purpose was to meet medical needs and open opportunities for evangelization and church planting.
IMB photo.
BENIN, West Africa (BP) -- In the country that birthed voodoo, Baptists in Benin are working to pray for and support the spread of the Gospel in the Sub-Saharan country.

It's a story IMB missionary Barbara Singerman can't share without tearing up.

"They are investing in missions," she said. "They are expressing a love and appreciation and oneness -- participation in the work. We are completely overwhelmed." 

She and her husband Jeff lived in the West African country for 24 years. When they moved to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), they continued to encourage Beninese Baptists to actively engage in the Great Commission.

Then tragedy struck: A week after a visit to Benin in March 2018, the Singermans both endured severe injuries in the DRC from a horrendous car accident. They had no idea God was using this awful experience to mobilize their brothers and sisters in Benin, a French-speaking country of some 11 million people between Nigeria and Togo.

Friends from Benin presented an astounding love offering for missions to Jeff and Barbara, who wept. Widows gave out of their lack to help their "Beninese brother and sister" who were suffering. Others were upset they hadn't been able to contribute right after the accident.

"They're not giving it to us. They're giving it to God," Barbara said.

IMB missionary Jeff Singerman, in a photo prior to his recovery from injuries in a March 2018 auto accident, preaches in a Baptist church in Benin, West Africa.
IMB photo.
This is the first time she and Jeff have seen Benin's Christians unite in prayer and sacrificial giving toward taking the Gospel to the nations. Church leaders across the country are calling on their congregations to pray. People have told the Singermans they will pray until they are healed.

"We're excited to see what happens," Barbara said.

Prayer requests:

-- Please join Beninese Baptists in praying for Jeff and Barbara Singerman's physical healing.

-- Ask God to continue to use this car accident to spur Beninese Christians to engage the Great Commission.

-- Pray that Beninese Baptists will boldly share the Gospel with their countrymen and the nations.

Gifts by Southern Baptists through the Cooperative Program and the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering support missionaries such as the Singermans who are taking the Gospel to people in Africa as they help national believers lead out in that effort.

Reported by the communication staff of the International Mission Board.
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