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Called To The Nations

 

CALLED TO THE NATIONS

People always ask us, “What’s your story? How did you end up in Africa?” Well, we didn’t exactly hear an audible voice or see an open vision or even know instantly that this is where we would be and that this is what we would be doing. It was a calling that revealed itself progressively through steps of obedience.

To give you a brief background on our lives, I (Matt) was born and raised in Michigan. I grew up in a Christian family, the oldest of five. My favorite thing about school was sports and as I grew up, soccer soon became my best sport: the one that I seemed to naturally excel at. After graduating high school, I (like many high school graduates) was unsure of what career I wanted to pursue so I went to a private college (because of a soccer scholarship). During that time, I attended an Inter-Varsity missions conference. While at this conference, I remember seeing a vision of me playing soccer in the streets of Africa. I didn’t know what it meant at the time.

Shortly after seeing this vision, God began to deal with my heart about going to Rhema Bible Training College in Oklahoma. Through confirmation that this is what God was asking me to do, I took a step of obedience. I packed what few things I had and my dad and I got in the car and drove 16 hours from Michigan to Oklahoma, not knowing anyone, having no place to stay, no job and little money in my wallet. I was truly walking on the water.

When I arrived at Rhema, through a series of divine appointments (over a month or so), I found a place to stay and a job. I knew God was calling me into full-time ministry and attending Rhema Bible Training College was the first step I needed to take in fulfilling that call. At the time, I wasn’t sure which type of ministry I was called to, but I naturally enjoyed being with youth, so I began volunteering with the youth ministry at Rhema Bible Church. In my second year at RBTC, I chose to specialize in youth and had concluded that God was calling me to be a youth pastor, most likely in Michigan. Little did I know what God really had in store for my future; it slowly began unfolding when I met my next-door neighbor, Angela.


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A Missionary Kid

 

A MISSONARY KID

I (Angela) was born in Florida where I lived until the age of 14 when my family moved to Mombasa, Kenya to be missionaries. Moving to a new country, meeting a new people and eating new types of food sent me into major cultural shock. Everything was so unfamiliar and strange. The first year was challenging in many ways: missing family and friends, the comforts of home (air conditioning, fast food restaurants, shopping mall) and even having to wear skirts and dresses all of the time! However the following year, when I was accepted to an international boarding school, my lifestyle improved. I made lots of friends and engaged in fun activities such as choir, drama and community outreach. I even learned the local language. Through my high school experience, I grew to love the once unfamiliar country. It actually became home.

After high school graduation, I asked my family to allow me to stay for a year before returning to the US for college. I wasn’t ready to return to the US. I really liked life in Kenya. Throughout this time, I volunteered with street children and knew that long term, I wanted to be in Africa. Time came for me to decide about college. My plan was to go to a college in Florida in my hometown and pursue an elementary education degree. However, God’s plan was different. He spoke to my heart about attending Rhema Bible Training College in Oklahoma. A bit reluctant, I chose God’s plan and little did I know that that is where I would meet my future husband, who happened to be my next-door neighbor…Matt.


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Rochester, MI 48308


We Made It

 

WE MADE IT

(2004)

Angela and I both graduated from RBTC, knowing that we would enter full-time ministry. Throughout the process of our dating, as Angela shared with me about her life and adventures in Kenya, something in me began to awaken a desire for the nations. Following graduation, I returned to Michigan to serve as the young adult pastor at my home church. Angela joined me the following year (she was one year behind me at college). We got married and served together at the church in Michigan.

Immediately following our honeymoon, we took our first trip overseas together which was to South Africa. By the end of the trip, I knew I was called to go to Africa. It just felt right. We returned to Michigan after that short trip and continued ministry at the church, all the while having a stirring in our hearts for Africa. We knew we would return, we just didn’t know when and how. 

In the year following our trip to South Africa, the directors of the ministry we went there to help, came to Michigan. They invited us to meet them for coffee at Starbucks. We had arrived in the parking lot and before we exited the car, we both paused and looked at each other and said, “We are supposed to go serve with them in South Africa.” We had a knowing from the Holy Spirit. Needless to say, by the end of our conversation with this couple, they had asked us to come and serve with them in South Africa. We were giddy with excitement. Our opportunity to get to Africa had finally availed! Nearly a year after that meeting, our pastor ordained us and released us to do mission work in South Africa. In the service that day, a lady from the church gave us this prophecy:

“Son and daughter of destiny – given to the nations through a Father’s love, the grace of Jesus and the power of the Spirit; not driven but called to the purpose of God, called by heart connection, not by guilt or need, called by the anointing of God, called by a grace poured out in full measure; called with a Macedonian call to go to those who must hear – covered with the glory of God as a refuge and a cover guided by the glory of God with a breakthrough anointing and a rear guard protection.”   

With two bags each, we moved to South Africa, not knowing how long we would be there. We just took it a year at a time. During our stay in South Africa, death was frequent. Many people were dying from AIDS. And not just older people: lots of young people. God asked me what I was going to do about it and He gave me the idea to write a curriculum, teaching youth how to save sex until marriage and how to live a life of purity. Angela and I wrote this curriculum and trained leaders to teach it to more than 5,000 students.


Join us in Celebrating Generosity, make a donation using one of the methods below. Read more about our 10 years in Uganda here! 

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Living Water Ministries
PO Box 82315
Rochester, MI 48308


The Move to Uganda

 

THE MOVE TO UGANDA

(2007)

After nearly three years in South Africa, we sensed transition was coming. We had moved back to the US for about 6 months praying out the next steps, when my former youth pastor invited us to go on a short missions trip with him to Uganda. A week into the trip, we knew that it was where God wanted us to be. Two months later, we moved to Uganda. Our ministry began with teaching the purity curriculum (that we had written and taught in South Africa) and we trained more than 100 leaders and reached 10,000+ students. Several years into doing this ministry, the Lord spoke to us about starting a Friday worship service for university students. And now, we have two of these services going (in different locations) with plans to plant another one in the near future.

It is now 13 years later, from the time we left the US for Africa, and here we are still. Just ordinary people who said, “yes” when God asked, “Will you go?” We just simply obeyed.


Join us in Celebrating Generosity, make a donation using one of the methods below. Read more about our 10 years in Uganda here! 

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Make a check payable to Living Water Ministries with the memo "Celebrating Generosity" and mail it to:

Living Water Ministries
PO Box 82315
Rochester, MI 48308


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Developing A Team

 

Developing A Team

(2007)

When we arrived in Uganda, it didn’t take long for us to realize that we needed to develop a team to help us fulfill the vision God had given us for this nation. There’s an old Chinese proverb, which reads: Behind an able man there are always other able men. The truth is that teamwork is at the heart of great achievement. Jesus, recognizing this truth, recruited the twelve disciples. He knew that He could not reach the world alone. 

Like Jesus, we developed a team to help us fulfill the mission.

The leaders we trained multiplied the reach of Living Water. Through face-to-face interaction with high school youth, they taught life skills, leadership skills and bible teaching on a weekly basis. They helped to develop confidence and healthy attitudes in the youth and equip them with life skills to sustain them in the future.  These leaders embodied good leadership and commitment acting as role models for the next generation leaders.


Join us in Celebrating Generosity, make a donation using one of the methods below. Read more about our 10 years in Uganda here! 

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Make a check payable to Living Water Ministries with the memo "Celebrating Generosity" and mail it to:

Living Water Ministries
PO Box 82315
Rochester, MI 48308


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Join The Revolution

 

(2008)

Join The Revolution

When we moved to Uganda, after praying about the direction of the ministry for this nation, we felt led to pioneer school outreach ministry as we had done in South Africa. Our aim was to train young adults to mentor high school youth about purity, utilizing the book we had written Walk Pure. We named this outreach program Revolution because of its definition. Revolution is a drastic and far-reaching change in ways of thinking and behaving. Because of the Aids endemic and moral decline among youth, we knew that there must be a revolution in order for the future of this nation to succeed.  Our mission was to impact students in Uganda schools, orphanages, and youth groups, by helping them discover and develop their life purpose and reach their destiny.   


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Rochester, MI 48308


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Walk Pure Launches!

 

(2008)

Walk Pure Launches!

The Walk Pure, purity program has launched in high schools. There is an urgency to reach the youth in Africa. Read what two of our key leaders have to say about the need for this purity program in Uganda, and why they got involved.

“This program is exactly what is needed for this time.  The youth have become very promiscuous.  The Walk Pure curriculum is organized nicely and very informative; it will be new information to many youth.  I believe there will be a revival among the youth through this program.  There will be, as you call it, a revolution and I want to be a part of this change in our nation.”
– Richard Lubwama
“It takes courage to do what you two people do and I must say it’s an amazing thing.  I don’t know much about AIDS in other countries, but in the country where I come from "Uganda" it’s so real and very scary for me.  I have watched my mother die because of Aids, and some of my other relatives as well.
I stay with my dad and he is also struggling with the disease.  Thanks to ARVs, and of course God's Mercy, he works and supports the family, pays fees for my siblings, and so many other things a man does in a family.
Someone needs to speak out on this.  Most youth in this country take the disease for granted. University girls will do anything to have money in their purse, so they will sleep around with any man for as long as he can provide them with money.  Somehow I believe you are God’s given gift to Ugandans.  I believe a miracle will happen when all the youth will abstain from sex, with God’s guidance till marriage, remain faithful to their partners and Aids will be history in this country.  And I believe you and Matt are going to make that happen.  Imagine a country without Aids orphans; that day will come, because God has sent you to redeem his people and I have no doubt about that. May the Lord bless you in all that you do.”
- Jackie Kivumbie

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Rochester, MI 48308


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Walk Pure A Success!

 

(2008)

Walk Pure A Success!

We are reaching over 1,200 youth!  Every week, these youths’ lives are being enriched through our Walk Pure curriculum, which teaches them to avoid contracting HIV/AIDS by saving sex until marriage.  Thanks to you each one of the students received their own Walk Pure book.

Here’s what some of the youth are saying about Walk Pure:

I learned that I am valuable and precious so I should respect myself and walk pure till God’s best timing, which is in marriage.” – Grace Kyomuhendo
I had a problem with lust and gave in to sexual urges and slept around with boys.  But after walk pure teachings, I learned how to control these sexual feelings and I have decided that I will no longer give in to sexual temptations, but I will control my sex drive as you have taught me.” – Shakirah Mamganda

Join us in Celebrating Generosity, make a donation using one of the methods below. Read more about our 10 years in Uganda here! 

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Make a check payable to Living Water Ministries with the memo "Celebrating Generosity" and mail it to:

Living Water Ministries
PO Box 82315
Rochester, MI 48308


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A Place For Living Water Youth

 

(2009)

A Place For Living Water Youth

On Thursday, February 5, 2009 Living Water Ministry hit a huge milestone! It was the first day of leadership academy in a new youth center, and although there was no electricity, a generator was used to run a sound system and play the Revolution DVD. About 20 young people attended the first meeting, and more are expected in the weeks to come as lessons begin! The students selected to attend the academy have completed high school and are committed to mentoring other middle and high school youth as they grow under Matt and Angela’s leadership.

The Living Water Youth Centre is critical to the Kampala community.

  • It’s the first and only facility where youth can safely hang out, fellowship, and have fun in a Christian environment. It’s where youth see other Godly examples.

  • It’s a training facility where Living Water can raise up youth mentors, coach them, and equip them in leadership and life skills that they can take back to their communities and home churches.  

  • It’s also an office space for the ministry, where Matt and Angela can manage business that supports ministry and curriculum growth. 


Join us in Celebrating Generosity, make a donation using one of the methods below. Read more about our 10 years in Uganda here! 

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Make a check payable to Living Water Ministries with the memo "Celebrating Generosity" and mail it to:

Living Water Ministries
PO Box 82315
Rochester, MI 48308


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Walk Pure Meets Ugandan President

 

(2010)

Walk Pure Meets Ugandan President

A Walk Pure (purity program) student Daphine Nayebere received an award from the State House for her pivotal contribution to fight against HIV and AIDS in Uganda. Because of her extensive work, sharing the abstinence message on radio, in a youth forum, and at many different high schools, Daphine was nominated by the HIV/AIDS society to enter a competition. The winner would receive $500 and a chance to spend time with the president of Uganda. Daphine knew much about this topic because she was a Walk Pure student. She won the competition.

Daphine attributes much of her motivation and confidence to talk to other teens, to the Walk Pure program, and to her Walk Pure mentor Kristine whom she calls her role model. “Walk Pure helped me resurrect my dream of changing the nation; their words of encouragement gave me a reason to move on.” In her school, Daphine’s zeal led her to reach her classmates and it has since bought her a great platform to reach young people across the city and nation. Thank you so much for helping us impact Daphine’s life.

Touching one, reaching many!


Join us in Celebrating Generosity, make a donation using one of the methods below. Read more about our 10 years in Uganda here! 

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Make a check payable to Living Water Ministries with the memo "Celebrating Generosity" and mail it to:

Living Water Ministries
PO Box 82315
Rochester, MI 48308


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Faithful Friends Launches!

(2011)

Faithful Friends Launches!

For the high school outreach program, we launched another curriculum Faithful Friends, teaching youth how to choose the right friends and how to rightly handle peer pressure.  Friends are a big part of our lives from childhood. It is a struggle for a great number of teens to acquire a healthy self-image, as they search for acceptance among peers. This is why Faithful Friends is vital to help these youth see who they are through God’s eyes and how to choose the right friends who will help support and lead them down a right path.

One of our leaders, Julius compared giving Faithful Friends books to the students like food falling from heaven.  As westerners, it is hard for us to understand their deep appreciation. Books are so disposable in the West, but here in Uganda, where the average salary is $1/day, books are rare and in great demand. The students don’t even have textbooks!

 Thank you for impacting youth’s lives!


Join us in Celebrating Generosity, make a donation using one of the methods below. Read more about our 10 years in Uganda here! 

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Make a check payable to Living Water Ministries with the memo "Celebrating Generosity" and mail it to:

Living Water Ministries
PO Box 82315
Rochester, MI 48308


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Campus Services Launch

(2012)

campus services launch

1 in 5 infected with HIV, 1 in 10 an orphan and 70% of Uganda’s population under the age of 30…the urgency to reach young is greater than ever! In order to see transformational change in this generation and future generations, we are targeting the nation’s influencers, university students - our future teachers, lawyers, engineers, doctors, politicians – and bringing to them the message of hope through Christ.

Every Friday, we gather together hundreds of university students to worship, to grow spiritually through Word and fellowship. During the week, additional classes are provided for going deeper with Christ and for developing leadership skills. Change will never happen until a leader rises up. We are raising up the next generation leaders in Uganda!


Join us in Celebrating Generosity, make a donation using one of the methods below. Read more about our 10 years in Uganda here! 

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Make a check payable to Living Water Ministries with the memo "Celebrating Generosity" and mail it to:

Living Water Ministries
PO Box 82315
Rochester, MI 48308


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What's Being Said About The Campus Services

(2012)

What's Being Said About The Campus Services

"The Campus Service has changed my life completely!  Before coming to the service, I was the kind of girl who used to go to the club, because I didn’t have any other place to go to, and I hung around with worldly friends.  But after attending the service, I saw that God was doing a good work in me, and I had to let go of those things.  I left those other friends, and I caught up a life with God!  From the first day I stepped into the college service, the kind of worship that was there is what encouraged me and now I encourage my friends to come with me." – Jacquie

“Thank you for inviting me to this college service. From the first time I came, I’ve never missed a service. I feel like I’ve been revived spiritually. I appreciate you praying with me to receive the baptism in the Holy Spirit. I had always wanted to speak in tongues, but didn’t know how to. I am going back to my home church in Kenya and I want to create a service like this for the youth there.” – Kate


Join us in Celebrating Generosity, make a donation using one of the methods below. Read more about our 10 years in Uganda here! 

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Make a check payable to Living Water Ministries with the memo "Celebrating Generosity" and mail it to:

Living Water Ministries
PO Box 82315
Rochester, MI 48308


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Purity Conference

(2013)

Purity Conference

This month we taught about sexual purity. Typically, we teach this message to high school students so this is our first time to teach this subject with university students! Young people battle with sexual temptations on a daily basis yet it is rarely talked about in the families and churches. You would think in a nation where the AIDS rate is as high as it is, that this topic would be a priority. 

Read this testimony from a university student who was impacted by the message of purity…

"Hi, my name is Alex. My friend Ruth invited me to the Friday college fellowship. When I heard the pastor would be speaking on purity, I wasn’t sure I wanted to attend. My friend however persuaded to come. Wow, did God get a hold of me! I was once a Christian, but had run far from God. I have tried everything worldly; going to clubs, drinking alcohol, having sex with different girls. I knew I had a call on my life, yet I hadn’t let go of these ungodly things. That is until I heard pastor’s message. I knew it was time to let go of this lifestyle and come back to God. I went forward to the altar to rededicate my life to the Lord. I then separated from those friends and I am praying for God to give me new Christian friends in this fellowship. Since rededicating my life to Christ, I purposed to share scriptures with people I meet throughout the day. In one day, I led 3 people to Christ. There’s no turning back now. I belong to Him." - Alex

Psalm 119:9 reads: How can a young person stay on the path of purity? By living according to Your Word” (NIV).


Join us in Celebrating Generosity, make a donation using one of the methods below. Read more about our 10 years in Uganda here! 

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Make a check payable to Living Water Ministries with the memo "Celebrating Generosity" and mail it to:

Living Water Ministries
PO Box 82315
Rochester, MI 48308


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Teen Mania Visits

(2014)

teen mania visits

This July we were honored to host a team comprised of 24 high school and college students  from Teen Mania Global Expeditions (Texas). The team joined us in teaching purity in multiples high schools and about friendship with God in an elementary school. During their 2 ½ week stay, they ministered in 18 schools, and led 423 children and youth in the prayer of salvation! Among those who accepted Christ, were several Muslims! 


Join us in Celebrating Generosity, make a donation using one of the methods below. Read more about our 10 years in Uganda here! 

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GIVE BY CHECK

Make a check payable to Living Water Ministries with the memo "Celebrating Generosity" and mail it to:

Living Water Ministries
PO Box 82315
Rochester, MI 48308


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