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A New Year Begins

This year is a little different than last. Why? Well I got to spend Christmas & New Years here in California. Last year I had a much quieter holiday season in Ethiopia! In fact Ethiopian Christmas was just celebrated. Ethiopia runs on a different calendar in comparison to the United States. Most of our holidays do not coincide! So this means I get to celebrate twice! Woohoo!

Well, I’m back in the US for a short period. But I wanted to share with everyone what happened before I left. God laid a burden on my heart for the street children I would see frequently in Jinka, Ethiopia, ┬ámy home base in Africa. Even though I am ministering in several tribal areas Jinka is the place I lay my head at night & I feel a great connection with the people. I knew I could create a program with God’s help that would enable these kids to learn about Jesus & his great gift of life. So after meeting with a local pastor, I explained what my vision was and we launched a children’s program at his church. And by church I mean dirt floors, mud-manure-straw walls & a tin roof!

Children's Church in Jinka playing outside

Children’s Church in Jinka playing outside

Every Saturday morning we teach the children, play fun games, and sing worship songs. I use the wonderful felt/flannel graph sets that were donated by a combination of people & churches in California. Our first Saturday 56 kids showed up. My last Saturday before leaving to California we had 110 kids! Pastor Jonah said “Carrie our children’s church will be larger than our adult service soon!” I said “Yes Pastor that is the idea, the children are our future!” What touches me the most is the kids talking about the stories the next week & then inviting more friends so they can hear too. I have been training Pastor Jonah so that he can run the children’s program for his church while I’m absent & then he can teach other local church members to help teach in the future.

Bible Story Time

Bible Story Time

One more thing before I sign off. I thought about all that God is doing through me & I asked myself, who am I? I am not a bible scholar. I am not some great church builder or pastor. I start children’s programs? Who am I? Well my conclusion is this, all God needed was a willing person. He decided long ago that when one of His children would step out in faith to serve Him even when the future is unknown that He would equip them & train them. I can confidently say that anything good that comes from my ministry on this earth is directly from Him. Every good idea, every program, E-V-E-R-Y-thing. So my question to you…who are you?

  • Pastor Marvin & Dorothy Kilgore on January 29, 2014

    Carrie we want you to know we are very proud of you and the ministry you have. The most rewarding for a pastor is
    to see the young people who were in his church serving GOD in a capacity chosen by HIM. We wanted to get with you
    while you were here but I see you are leaving Monday. We had been informed you were leaving in March.
    Please keep in touch. Our prayers are for you.

    • Carrie Johnson on February 19, 2021

      Thank you for shaaring that with me! I was dedicated by you as a baby! God has a plan for each of us!

  • Laverne on February 15, 2014

    Carrie, I love your Web site. Looks like you are happy a great time. Sorry our church didn’t get to see you while you were here. We now have Oscar in our church as Youth leader, we really like and enjoy him – he’s a real sweetheart. May God Bless you richly. love, laverne