Kathy Alexander has served for two years as a missionary for Foursquare Missions International in Sierra Leone, a nation of 5.2 million that is still recovering from a bitter civil war (1991-2002) that resulted in tens of thousands of deaths and the displacement of about one-third of the population.
Those living in the West African nation have an average life expectancy of only 55 years. The majority—60 percent—are Muslim; 10 percent are Christian; and 30 percent practice indigenous beliefs.
Foursquare has seven churches and three additional cell groups in Sierra Leone, as well as three primary schools, one secondary school and one Bible school. Kathy resides in Freetown, the major port city and capital.
FOURSQUARE LEADER: Tell us about your Bible classes for nationals and what you find exciting about this ministry.
KATHY: Because we are in the beginning stages of church development, we have a need to develop future leaders. One way of accelerating this process is by providing Bible classes for nationals. We are currently using the International School of Ministry curriculum, which is DVD-based and can be translated when necessary.
I really love teaching God’s Word in a clear and practical way. I see the students’ excitement as they study and realize the truth and power of God’s Word. I see them applying outside of class what they have learned in class.
I get really excited, because the truth of God’s Word destroys the lies that are present within every culture and sets people free. It is also a way to establish a solid foundation for the future growth and health of the church in Sierra Leone.
FOURSQUARE LEADER: You coordinate and host teams that come to help with evangelism, church planting and leadership training. What results have you seen from these efforts?
KATHY: Teams have come from Oregon, California and Maryland. In 2009, we hosted five teams—three from our home church, Beaverton Foursquare Church in Oregon; one from Valley Christian Center in Albany, Ore.; and one Ignite youth team from California.
The team from Valley Christian Center hosted a basic medical clinic that included counseling and prayer for a community located on Juba Hill in western Freetown. This was in response to a year of prayer and preparation, carried out by the headquarters church in Sierra Leone.
The result of the partnership was the birth of a new, thriving Foursquare church located in the center of the Juba community. People are being baptized, children are being taught, and their building and facility are being added to weekly. We are truly grateful that God answers prayer and that teams are willing to come and serve.
FOURSQUARE LEADER: What compelled you to go to Sierra Leone?
KATHY: I love Africa, and I’m passionate about helping healthy churches get established and move toward their fullest potential in Christ. The church is made of people, so the way I see that happening is by the transformation of one precious person at a time. When I was invited to consider serving here, it was confirmation of what God had already placed in my heart.
FOURSQUARE LEADER: What do you wish people in the U.S. knew about ministering to people in Sierra Leone?
KATHY: I wish people knew how ripe and responsive the country is to the gospel, and how effective development projects are in sharing the gospel with people when they are first initiated by the local church or community.
Development apart from the gospel is futile. The physical changes last only as long as the harsh environment allows. Unless the hearts of all the people involved are transformed by God, development is temporary.
FOURSQUARE LEADER: What do you see God doing as you look to the future?
KATHY: I see God establishing a large, everlasting foundation upon which the church in Sierra Leone will be established. Ezra 3:11 says: “Then all the people shouted with a great shout, when they praised the Lord, because the foundation of the house of the Lord was laid” (NKJV).
FOURSQUARE LEADER: What can we in the U.S. pray for concerning Sierra Leone?
KATHY: First, political stability and peace in the region, so development can continue to take place. Second, for the churches to be established in health, growth and maturity. And third, for the churches to become independent, viable and able produce other such churches.
FOURSQUARE LEADER: How can pray for you, personally?
KATHY: For health and protection; that God-given visions would be realized in due time; and for the grace to endure to the end.
How You Can Bless Kathy
Our Foursquare missionaries are always encouraged by and grateful for any prayers and correspondence they receive. Whether it’s a gift sent on a birthday or holiday, or simply a letter or note of encouragement, you can make a difference by expressing your support in a practical way.
To send correspondence to Kathy, e-mail her, or write to:
Foursquare Gospel Church of Sierra Leone
14 Peter Lane, off Campbell St.
Freetown, Sierra Leone PMB1250