The month of May allowed me the first opportunity to be a part of two of the six pastors’ conferences that we have planned for this year (I missed one in February before we returned to Nigeria). Truth Baptist Church hosted the 12th Annual Soul- Winning & Leadership Conference, with nearly 35 pastors attending, many bringing workers and preachers from their church with them. Missionary Evangelist Jim Belisle’s tenth visit to our work proved to be the most urgent one for us, as he was the only invited guest preacher who was able to have a valid visa to make it out here. The Pathfinder Foundation, started by Grace & Glory Baptist Church’s co-pastor, Adewale Adesina, honored Bro. Belisle and me, along with Ms. Pat and a few former missionaries, with plaques to commemorate our years of service to Nigeria. Our mission board’s Field Service Coordinator and I then flew to Aba for the third conference to be held in that city and the first hosted by Faith Baptist Church, started by Missionary Ken Gill close to 25 years ago and pastored for nearly 15 years by a faithful national pastor and friend. We had 18 churches represented in this three-day meeting, and all three area pastors surprised me with honorary plaques and gifts of clothing from their churches.
Exam week for our seminary was immediately before our Abuja conference, and the week after, all but four of our students traveled for internships at various independent Baptist churches. This allowed us to begin the project of adding the second floor to our dormitory rooms. As I write this letter, the roofing has been removed, new pillars are in place, and the pouring of cement for the decking will begin soon. We have updated the page that our mission board had started for this fundraising opportunity: fbmi.org/mpg/holmes. Please visit and consider helping us with the remaining balance that is needed to do the walls, windows, doors, and new roof.
As the seminary continues to grow and our students get more and more opportunities for evangelism and service in the local area, the need for a van has become more essential. With the favorable exchange rate recently, I believe that we could buy a very reliable 18-passenger “bus” for around $10,000. We would greatly appreciate your prayers and potential assistance towards this additional project for our schools that have now been a part of producing nearly 150 graduates who are serving all over Nigeria, West Africa.
Mark Holmes, written 19 July 2021