fbpx Skip to content

Tragedy in the mission field – Benita’s story – part one of four

“Tragedy in the mission field”

This is a troubling story about how Benita, a missionary, lost her husband and child on the mission field, told in 4 parts:

Part 1

I grew up with a Muslim aunty after my father died, but eventually my Christian mother came to retrieve me and it was after that, that I gave my life to Christ after a Bible class. With salvation came a deep desire to know more about Him and do His will in every area of my life. I was very involved in serving at the church, but not with missions. Eventually, I began to think of marriage and one of my heart’s desires was to marry someone with whom I could serve God. From this came a dream, where God showed me the husband who was coming, and other Christians also confirmed to me that I was to marry him. He was a missionary!

The family supported my decision, but I felt unworthy considering his education level when I was not very educated. My mother, who was illiterate, was especially glad to have such a man as a son-in-law. The marriage went forward and I joined him on the mission field in 2018.

It was a difficult beginning, living in a typical village in a place with harsh weather and backward people. The primary occupation of the area is farming, and the people still trade by barter. My husband and I were sent out by a mission agency; however, we had to raise our own financial support and do farming to provide for ourselves. We served among the Avadin and Dukawa people groups of Niger state, which shares a border with Kebbi State. It takes a person with a deep love for God to stay in such a place, but my passion for the Father made it possible. In that place, there was no church, though some could be found further out. Unfortunately, those churches were not testifying to Christ.

The Avadin and Dukawa people are animists dominated and ruled by the Muslim minority, who are the elite. They oppressed the local people by requiring payment in millet to perform weddings, then giving them loans for the millet at high-interest rates. In this way, the people were kept in debt. The Muslim minority also had a great ability to cook good food, which the local people did not know how to do. Their desire for this good food, which they must pay for, also kept them in debt.

There was not a single school in the community where we worked, and through ignorance, the local people continued to be exploited.

My husband had decided to focus on ministry through education and had started a primary school, so I joined the work. In the beginning, we taught under a tree, but within a short time put up a decent structure. Surprisingly, the older people allowed us to disciple the children, though they themselves were not open to the Gospel.

Before long, we started a church, built a mission house and began to see results as the children were being educated and discipled.

When my husband came to the community, he started teaching them how to manage their crops, their finances and how to cook good food with what they have. The effect was that people started to learn and there were visible transformations. This did not go down well with the Muslim elites who began to lose their customers. They could see that the education of the children and of the community would eventually lead to the liberation of the local people. This liberation came at a cost; they began to attack my husband spiritually. That is when things really started heating up. What happened next was horrifying…

Excerpted from an interview by Rhoda Oluwakemi Appiah. She is married with three children. She is a pioneering missionary of Fullstature Missions International together with her husband, Rev. Daniel Hyde Appiah. She is a lover of God and His word, with an overwhelming desire to see God’s kingdom advance in every sphere of society. Rhoda can be reached at kemiappiah@gmail.com.
contact us
contact us
contact us