Greetings from Nairobi, Kenya, East Africa. We hope you are well in your part of the world. We had a difficult end to 2021 when I nearly went to Heaven due to two septic-shock attacks in three weeks, with the cause of the infection never being determined. Melody and Lindsay contracted COVID, and Melody had major non-COVID-related surgery. It now appears that we are all well and back on track. Praise the Lord!
Over the last three months, we have also had some challenging and exciting events taking place. We now have all the members of Team East Africa in Nairobi, Kenya, along with all their personal and ministry items. We had a team meeting, with all four families attending. It was a good time of fellowship. Two of our team couples are either completing or starting language school. We have moved the Pastors’ Practical Training Academy up-country, about 9 hours northwest of Nairobi, and we are intensely training pastors in that area for about three days (five days with travel) per month. This will happen every month for about 18 months, God willing. Our second training outside of Nairobi starts April 8. There will be about 6 churches represented by their pastors in this area of Bungoma. Most are from the Luhya tribe. We are also looking to set up this same training program in three additional areas, looking to train pastors from Masai, Luo, and Kisii. There are all sorts of issues involved, including tribal background, which must be addressed. We will see what the Lord will do.
We will use a properly prepared Statement of Faith and Constitution as teaching tools when organizing a church so that they are clear on what they believe and why they believe it. This will give them a clear understanding of doctrine and church practice. The plan is that each pastor will teach his church on what they have been taught on a particular doctrine for one month, focusing on their understanding and starting with salvation.
Most Kenyans will say they are “saved,” but few understand what that really means. Many, if not most, Kenyans will tell you they can lose their salvation, and most would not understand the issue of the new Greek text being corrupt, so they readily accept the new-version bibles, such as the Good News Bible, with all their associated errors. We teach them very early that the KJV is God’s Word in the English language. The Kenyans get excited when they find someone willing to stand on and teach the Truth. Of course, some pastors teaching false doctrine take offense, but that is to be expected and easily handled when you know correct doctrine. I tell the “pastors” that one day they will beheld accountable by an almighty, righteous God for what they did or did not do. Some appreciate the truth and want to learn more, while others try to keep the status quo so they can keep things the same and not affect their positions of influence. It is a battle that takes time, but it is one that is necessary if false teaching is to be exposed and, in the future, to see more truly saved and knowledge and understanding imparted to the simple.
The first training in Bungoma finished with 16 pastors and assistant pastors signing a register, committing themselves to transforming their churches over the next 18 months into fundamental, independent Baptist churches with a proper Statement of Faith and Constitution. Brandon Heselschwerdt, one of our team members who recently arrived in Kenya, gave me a hand with the teaching in Bungoma and Rongo, which was a blessing and good preparation for future opportunities across the country.
Our daughter Lindsay turned 16 years old on February 21. Mom and Dad are very excited as we watch her grow into a beautiful young lady, growing in knowledge, understanding, and wisdom. How do they grow up so fast? It is beyond my understanding but a great blessing to Mom and Dad.
I am looking to restart the Bible study that we had in our complex for many months in 2021 but was shut down by management due to some inexplicable reason, on which I am still not clear. Now we have been given another opportunity, and although the gathering has been small for our first two weeks, we have seen a young Nigerian mother named Chioma come to the Lord and a Ugandan girl named Lydia join our group. We were also encouraged by one of the ladies, Lucy, coming to church with us.
Melody is excited about the progress she is seeing as she continues to teach the teachers at a local independent Baptist church school how to train children with dyslexia how to read. Tutors are growing in confidence, as are the students. One little boy now enjoys going to school and no longer hangs his head when reading is mentioned. One child’s parents came to a teacher and asked what they had changed, as their child’s grades had improved so much. Melody also heard from a tutor in the U.S. of another dyslexic student who remarked that she can now read her Bible alone for the first time. What an amazing gift, the gift of reading, that may lead to a child‘s salvation. This week we are hoping that the storage room that has been designated as the “Reading Centre” will be cleaned and painted, cupboard installed, floor tiles laid, lighting upgraded, desks made especially for tutoring, and curtain partitions hung up to make this a good learning environment for these future church members, soul winners, teachers, missionaries, etc.
Please continue to pray for:
• The Lord to raise up Kenyan men of integrity to teach the truth, do the work of the ministry, and answer the call of God on their lives.
• Additional finances for operating the PPTA, including accommodations, printing of teaching materials, and diesel fuel for the grueling trips up-country.
• Melody, who has moved ahead by faith with the Reading Centre project. The school has no extra money to make this room a practical tutoring environment, and Melody needs approximately $1,800 to complete the project.
• Our combined hospitalization bills of $4,200 that will not be reimbursed by our medical cover due to a pro rata of outstanding claims. We are very grateful and give thanks to the Lord for what has been reimbursed.
• A special prayer request. Pastor Dennis Wanyama has been faithfully attending our PPTA training in Nairobi. On his return, he has implemented several changes in his own church, Agape Baptist Church, which has been very exciting to see. He is a key leader in our program and is influencing other pastors in a very remote area (he is a Luhya). He needs a smartphone for better communication, teaching, and the receiving of documents (for training fellow pastors, homework instruction, follow-up through WhatsApp, etc.). He has 10 children and cannot afford a smartphone. I am praying that someone may have a secondhand smartphone in good condition that they are not using any more and could donate for use in the ministry. Data is cheap in Kenya. I can purchase data for him and send it to his phone when needed for as little as $2.00. It could be a good excuse for you to upgrade—just a thought. Please email me at email@example.com, and I will email you the location to send the phone in the U.S. We can have it inexpensively and safely sent to Kenya or brought by our next visitor.
God bless you.
Your co-laborers in Christ
Peter, Melody, and Lindsay Morris
A dyslexic student and her teacher—the student’s countenance is starting to change as she learns to read and grows in confidence!
Teaching a pastor how to effectively lead someone through the Gospel to Jesus Christ for salvation
Teaching doctrine to the Pastors’ Practical Training Academy (PPTA) students/pastors
Teaching Agape Baptist Church members to worship and praise God correctly by singing hymns and spiritual songs
Team East Africa meeting together as a complete team for a time of fellowship
Brandon Heselschwerdt, one of our team members, meeting some of the local children
This student just completed the “Foundation in Sounds” course. Notice the smile–and this is before addressing the dyslexia issue!
Pastors signing a register, committing to teach their people truth and to transform their churches into organized, fundamental, independent Baptist churches