SIM scholarships help persecuted couple become pastors
By Lee Forland, Southern Africa Communications Coordinator | Malawi in Southern Africa
Mayamiko and Mercy celebrate their graduation from EBCoM earlier this year
Shunned and persecuted for their faith in Jesus Christ, a couple from south east Malawi chose to respond by doing something incredible.
Mayamiko and his wife Mercy were raised in a Muslim community and were rejected by their community when they accepted Jesus as their saviour.
But, even though they lost many friends and felt very alone, they knew they had to stand firm – so firm, that they decided to become pastors and share the love of Christ with the very people who were persecuting them.
With the help of sponsorship from SIM, they each began a two-year journey at the Evangelical Bible College of Malawi (EBCoM) to receive training that would make them more effective in their outreach ministry.
The culmination of those studies came in October, when they both graduated with a Certificate of Bible Studies (CBS) within the English speaking programme. Not only that, but Mercy received the “Best Academic Student of the Year” award for being first in her class.
After the graduation ceremony, Mercy said, “Today is an exciting day! I enjoyed the evangelism and discipleship courses at EBCoM the most, and I am now looking forward to returning to my community where I can help people understand just how much Christ loves them.”
Mayamiko and Mercy are now serving home communities as ministers in the evangelical church, from where they continue reaching out to their Muslim community.
They graduated alongside four more SIM-sponsored students from the Africa Evangelical Church (AEC), Samuel Thenford, Joseph Chanunkha, Patrick Tayali and Blessings Milisi.
Samuel, who had worked as a pastor before joining EBCoM, was the best academic student in the Chichewa programme.
These four will now serve a one-year internship in the AEC before becoming pastors of their own churches.
• For Mayamiko and Mercy, that God will continue to protect them and bless their ministry as they reach out to the unreached in their community
• For Samuel, Joseph, Patrick and Blessings, that God will shepherd them and guide them as they continue to develop as pastors during their one-year internships
• That God will continue to raise up future EBCoM graduates, and that the graduates will continue to be a blessing to their communities