You are here: Home News What's John Rowse up to?

What's John Rowse up to?

by Bob Harvey last modified Apr 11, 2016 10:24 AM

Dear praying friends,

Travel, Travel and more Travel

Thanks to God for safe travel back to Tanzania, then to Kenya and back and on to Mbeya where I am now. Please pray for the next three weeks or so where ​I have a lots of tra​v​elling in Malawi.

"Christian" Witch-hunters!

What's John Rowse up to?The conference of the African Society for Evangelical Theology was very interesting. I was just one of the small bikkies presenting papers and even in the exclusive discussions among the paper-presenters, we had to mainly listen to the big guns from America. But it was very worthwhile, although quite horrific. In the Congo (DRC), in Kinshasa, they say that 70% of the street kids are there as a result of being driven from home or escaping after being suspected of being witches. Whereas usually the "seers" who "see" who are the witches - i.e. who see the people secretly using evil powers to kill and maim - are the traditional diviners. Now, as horrible cults become more and more popular​, supposedly "Christian" pastors and "prophets" are taking on the role.

The "witch-hunting industry" is becoming "Christianized". What is particularly horrible is that they are targetting children. Parents who suspect a child of being a witch may take him to the pastor who "tests" him. Testing may involve throwing pepper in the poor child's eyes, and much, much worse. Many children die in the testing ordeals. One pastor has been found responsible for over 100 child deaths.

Doors Ajar

The conference was a marvellous opportunity to make connections, and should lead to seminars in Kenya, and with Pentecostals in Tanzania, and more work with Presbyterians in Malawi - their moderator general was also presenting a paper and is quite keen to have me work there. They let me distribute over 700 brochures about Grace Clinics. So please pray they'll be read and do their work.

I spent some time in Dar, and thankfully got a good hearing from the Assistant Commissioner for Education - though he seems to be very busy or at least not exactly racing to follow up on what he said he would do. But he likes the idea of having the kids do drama skits and he said that in the past they had done drama competitions alon​g​side inter-school sports, and that false wit​c​hcraft accusation would be a very good theme for such drama presentations. So please pray that it will lead to something. I have framed a letter and he has promised to forward it personally to the Permanent Secretary for Education.

I have had one great teaching time on wit​c​h-hunting in Njombe - about four hours from here (Mbeya), although at one point the Landrover washed its face in a sneaky hole totally hidden by some sneaky water (it's the rainy season). It was obviously witchcraft because it deceived the best of drivers! But, thankfully, no serious damag​e - just had to replace the handbrake cable.

A strange Easter Message

Easter was a ball, with teaching at two different UKWATA (Christian secondary students') conferences and two Lutheran churches. On​e​ of the conferences was way up in the hills in the clouds, near the border with Malawi. ​Another preacher​ there on Easter Day was a lady nurse who, at great decibels and with a million praise-the-Lord​'​s a minute, kindly info​rmed the poor students that if they wanted to enter the kingdom of heaven they had to live a holy life. Isn't that just the loveliest Easter message?! She assured me afterwards that if she died when her heart was not 100% sanctified, she would go to hell. Utterly tragic, and sick! And it's everywhere. But the students loved it!

Disciples' Grief

Sadly, our Shabani and his wife, Jane, have just lost their baby at about 8 months. Little Lauren ​could not take in food, and although our good medico friends moved mountains to get food into her via a tube, when some virus or bacteria got her, she was just so malnourished she had no immunity.

Please pray for Daudi Ores, who has been doing ‘Grace Clinics’ in the far north and even one in Nairobi. He was doing OK with his welding and so started building his own house, but could only get a plot out of town in a bush area. Their little girl was asleep on a mattress on the floor when they found a long black snake under her mattress. When they tried gently to move her, it struck her near the elbow. They were so far from town that it took hours to get her to hospital, and then she was too far gone for the hospital to save her. Please pray for Daudi and his wife and their remaining children.

Please pray for the radio work which ​has started again, although we have missed too many sessions because of technical problems.

Thank you for your praying,


Subscribe to our mailing list

* indicates required
Upcoming Events
Reformation Concert 2017 Oct 28, 2017 06:30 PM - 08:30 AM — Browns Plains Presbyterian Church
Young at Heart Nov 10, 2017 09:30 AM - 11:00 AM — 274 Waller Rd Heritage Park - 4118
Young at Heart Dec 08, 2017 09:30 AM - 11:00 AM — 274 Waller Rd Heritage Park - 4118
Upcoming events…