Monday, July 28, 2008

Operation Nehemiah June 2008 Newsletter - Missions report

The Nile Beth Israel Messianic Congregation, Borongole- Beth Israel, Pageri Payam, Magwi County, Eastern Equatoria State, South Sudan

Abiding in the Shadow of the Almighty” Psalms 91.. The theme of Nehemiah Missions report
June 2008..

http://www.operationsnehemiah.orgReport By William Levi, CEO and President of ONMI

Dear Friends and co-laborers in the Great Commission.

Shalom! From the deepest of our hearts, on behalf of our family and Operation Nehemiah, Hannah and I want express our gratitude to each and every one of you for your prayer and financial support for making my mission trip to the South Sudan possible. Praise be to God for His unfailing promise and loving kindness. The theme of the trip was based on Psalms 91Abiding in the Shadow of the Almighty

On June 2, My dear friend and brother in the Lord, Kevin Rousseau and I left for the South Sudan to witness and validate the ongoing mission of Operation Nehemiah which is rebuilding lives of people returning from exile to their homeland. Our primary focus is the village of (Borongole) Beth Israel, in Pageri Payam, Magwi County, Eastern Equatoria State, South Sudan.

We left USA for the South Sudan via London, UK and Kampala, Uganda. Upon our arrival in Kampala, we were joined by Engineer David Firth from Blessing for Obedience. He specializes in setting up Christian broadcasting radio stations throughout the South Sudan and East Africa. And after one week , we were joined by Miss Jamie Dean, a reporter with the World Magazine. We had the best team on the trip.

There was cohesive spirit of brotherly love and unity in Christ among us. Our ground staff was well prepared to receive us. Upon arrival, we were received by our Field Director, Dr. Luka Gobi Benson, Pastoral leader Michael Levi and OMNI Sudan’s Chairman of the board of elders, Dr. Mindra Godwin. We set out on this trip for spiritual warfare. We expect that there will be trials a long the way. Emboldened by our ground staff, we made daily devotion and scripture readings and prayers on rotational based as our top priority.

On June 7, we arrived Nimule, South Sudan. In the first order of the day, we dedicated Operation Nehemiah Missions compound in Nimule where one of our staff member was bitten and killed by snake in May 2008. We dedicated everything which God has entrusted to Operation Nehemiah from human resources, to equipment and invoked God’s protection upon His people and His mission. Psalms 91 was read and staff was prayed over.

Thousands of people have returned from exile to Magwi County since January 2008.

The pastors of Beth Israel Messianic Congregation

From R to L are Senior Pastor Michael and Mrs Katrine Levi and associate Pastor Joseph Levi

Worship celebration at Michael Levi's
June 15, 2008 marked the climax of our mission trip where approximately 400 believers converged on a Sunday service at BIMC in ONMI compound in Borongole to witness a historic moment, the ordination of Pastor Michael Levi of Beth Israel Messianic Congregation by Rev. Gabriel Lagu Nichlaus Vuni of Christian Brethren Church.

Rev. Gabriel is also on the board of elders of ONMI. He brought a message of pastoral charge and exhortation from 2 Timothy 4:1-5 and 1 Timothy 3:1-7.

William introduce Jamie dean of World Magazine to the church.
She brought encouragement to the brothers and sisters there from the song of Moses from Psalms 90. We spent two days in Juba and four days in the ON”s compound. While in Juba, Beth Israel and Nimule, Miss Dean conducted a number of

interviews with government officials, church lea

ders, ONMI staff, UNHCR officials and
returnees. In the course of the one week. on the ground, she visited our mission compound, met with our staff in every department, conduct interviews, visited different projects, worshiped with us, and visited the homes of people that have returned from exile. If you are subscriber to the World Magazine, very soon you will be able to read Miss Dean Report on this trip or you can also visit their website at

William Levi introduces Jamie Dean of World Magazine to the pastors and community leaders

William Preached from John 21: 15-17 before Michael Levi's ordination about Jesus final word of reconciliation with Peter after He denied Jesus three times; and his final instruction to Peter to keep His flock if He loves him.

Pastor Michael Levi has now the pastoral mandate to ordain other pastors, appoint pastoral staff, deacons to work along side, baptize people and dedicate babies, conduct marriages, burials, and plant churches and presides over the finances of the church.

This church building in Borongole requires renovation.
This is the north and the eastern side of the building

What you see the South and the eastern side view

Again this is the East and northern side of the building

The adjacent view of the eastern side of the building

BIMC Messianic vision is rooted in taking the church back to her Messianic root 2000 yrs ago in the book of Acts where Jews and gentiles are one in Messiah. The Gospel spread from there starting from Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria to the utmost part of the earth.

The church was started by ONMI under my leadership and Rev, Michael Longwa in our mission compound in Kampala, Uganda on July 29, 2000 with help of Beth Israel Messianic Congregation based in Garfield, NJ USA to serve as a fellowship center to meet and care for spiritual needs of the South Sudanese in exile who found themselves in a big city like Kampala.

William and the church elders pray that God will provide fund for a church building

In 2005, we moved the church to the South Sudan. Rev. Michael Levi is the first pastoral fruit of the BIMC. My brother Michael and I see ourselves and BIMC as the spiritual product of a long term brain child work of our grandfather, Rev. Andrew Vuni who had tremendously impacted our spiritual walk with Christ early on in our childhood upbringing. Thank to our parents who had raised us in a godly home.

Now, four years in the making, we have seen God’s hand in the mission of Operation Nehemiah which he has entrusted into our care in Pageri Payam. Operation Nehemiah is fulfilling its original mission objectives envisioned back in 1993 which is to rebuild the broken hearted, broken families, widows, the fatherless and to restore the church of Christ destroyed by the Islamic war of persecution in the Sudan... Thank God for those of you who have persevered with us to see these things are being fulfilled.. The timing is right according God’s plan for Operation Nehemiah to implement these vision and its objectives. From this latest mission trip, I saw a great harvest for Christ. People are ready for God because they are broken. We have Biblical mandate to reach them with the message of Salvation of Christ. We have to teach the Gospel message of reconciliation of men to God as Christ ambassador on earth. Satan has no power to stop us to reach them. Jesus has already given us a go ahead. The only one that can stop us is ourselves. Here is our hope, the community has returned from exile and they are ready. God has protected them from the influence of African paganism, Islamic conversion and social materialism so that their souls could be saved for Eternity. They have been coming to Operation Nehemiah missions in one, and in ten of thousands looking for encouragement and Biblical guidance. They have returned home from exile broken, hungry, naked, sick and spiritually empty. They came to Operation Nehemiah Missions compound, all in need of spiritual and physical food.

Relief Distribution

Families have been restored, men are rising up to their calling to be priests of their household
Women and girls are been protected and children have been instructed to love God and obey their parents. For us, this was no a surprise,

Here William embraces his aunt Sarah Kipolo Geri - his father Ajjugo Levi's remaining only sister. She is in her eighties.

We have no trepidation what so ever that one day this village and its community will rise from the ashes of destruction.

William and the children in Nimule

Kevin, William and the David with the BIMC Children

Morning Devotion at ONMI compound

The Nehemiah trumpet call Gospel radio station. In addition the four congregations, we have also established Christian radio station an FM radio station called Nehemiah Trumpet call 97.3 FM Gospel radio. The radio is operating out of Borongole ONMI Missions house. It covers roughly 30-45 miles radially reaching 100,000 in the region. We have just erected a 300ft radio tower on top of Gordon Mt in Nimule. When you go up other you can’t miss it. The goal of the tower is to boost the coverage area of the existing station from 40 miles to 100 miles with potential to reach Juba 65 miles away and most of northern Uganda. What is missing is the power source to run the tower

We knew and expect that one day the sound of the Sunday Worship bells will ring again and beautiful dawning sounds of crowing cocks and singing birds will be heard throughout the villages echoes the rumbling sounds of majestic River Nile, the rolling hills of Nimule to the distant Mts of Opari will be inhabited again by this resilient remnant of a people yearning for God., This is a dream and promise coming to pass.

Figure 4 Kevin Rousseau, Matthew and Pasquale Ingi on street evangelism

This time around, the message based on the biblical teaching for holy living in this emerging community was heard not just by the few but thousands of the people who have just returned from exile heard it. Within one hour hundred of them came to the compound, requesting for Bibles and solar receivers which Kevin and I brought from the USA donated by Galcom International based in Canada.

Seeing how hungry the people were for the word of God, Kevin and I took to the street while leaving engineer David Firth with some of our ground staff in the broadcasting room airing the precious news of the Gospel and the whole community was glued to their solar radios hearing the Good News. As we took to the street and visiting the homes of some of the returnees, we were met by a record numbers of men, women, boys and girls joyfully thanking God for this precious technology which God has brought to their door steps.

Kevin Rousseau Distributes Bibles and Solar radio to the people on the street of Borongole.

Matthew Levi, explains the importance of the pocket Bible

Distribution of fix tune solar radios so that the people can hear the word of God On Nehemiah Trumpet Call.

Service at The Nile Beth Israel Messianic congregation.

ON June 8, the scenery we had experience was similar to John chapter 6 where Jesus fed 5 thousands people on five loaves and two fishes. We were flooded with over 350 people who rushed to the house of the Lord under huge mango tree for worship and prayers. They welcomed us with cheers and gratitude.

At first, we felt overwhelmed telling Pastor Michael Levi that there was not enough place to conduct a Sunday service, we should move people to the other church 5 miles away. However, we realized this was spiritual test and we could not afford to fail it. We ought to allow the Holy Ghost to lead.

The message was brought by Rev. Michael Levi from 1st Corinthians 12 about unity in the body of Christ. This gathering was impossible in June 2007 when I was down there due to security problems that had engulfed Magwi County.

Figure 6 William Levi center bringing greeting from family and churches in the USA, as Okang Ezekiel (L) and Michael Levi(r)at BIMC worship center listened.

Bible distribution

Just six months ago, all the 7500 returnees who are now the permanent residents of this re-emerging villages were in the Ugandan exile. We used to hold ours Sunday services at The first Beth Israel Messianic congregation which was established in Pageri in May 2005. The church is 5 miles south of ONMI main compound.

Nehemiah Field Clinic has been officially opened to the general public

On June 9, we witnessed Nehemiah Field Clinic opening its door to the general public returning from exile for the first time.

From 2004- 2007, ONM had conducted it medical out reach under trees or in the out doors. Now this has changed.

This time ONMI was prepared to present its community with a new facility powered with solar energy, stuffed with $10 million worth of medical supplies and equipped with four born again medical staff ready to serve.

In a short while during the course of the day the clinic was filled up with more than 100 patients. Our clinical officer, Miss Nellie and Dr. Luka Gobi Benson were so thrilled to attend to these patients.

Miss Nellie, originally from Kenya who was acting as the spokeswoman for the ONM said, she was so blessed to serve the people and she thanks the brothers and sisters in the USA Specially the International Children for providing the medical supplies and the Berkshire medical center for providing the fund for the lab equipment and the building project.

She said the medicines they got from ICF are quality medicines which are hard to find anywhere in Africa. Having served in several medical clinic across Uganda, she said, these medical supplies that ONM has are the best of its kind. She said, on behalf of ONM she would like to say Only God can reward the donors and pray that may God continue to bless the hands of those here in the USA who has provided these medical supplies and the building to the community in the South Sudan

I asked Clinical Officer Nellie, Nurse David and Dr. Benson, what is the difference between Nehemiah Field Clinic from other medical centers.? They both said, NFC is Christian medical facility run by a Chrisitan organization(ONMI), where doctors and nurses know and understand their limits and medical jurisdiction over patients. Beyond that they see themselves as God’s instruments serving God’s people with Jesus Christ being the ultimate Great physician over them and everone else. They are working hand in hand with pastors who come along side and conduct prayers over the patients and patients are offered the opportunity to receive the message of salvation in Jesus Christ. Patients are constantly reminded that some illness are terminal that leads to physical death and beyond that there is Eternity and there is hell where Jesus presides over the soul of every person irrespective of their earthly profession.

The agricultural Development

However, we decided to place major emphasis on ensuring that the agricultural sector of the ministry goes forward.

This is the main and one of the most sensitive areas of the organization.

Food security is a must

We shared ideas with staff and asked to expand farming activities throughout the land and the river site and across the river where there is vast banana plantation and other important fruit trees.

Miss Jamie Dean of World Magazine visited ONMI banana plantations

The land across the river is fertile and without conflict of interest. We want to expand out there with timber plantation and other edible fruits plantation

Challenges and need for prayer support: We need 2 more tractors in addition to the one we have, we need disc 2 harrows and 2 tillers. Greasing the tractor and protection of the hydraulic hoses are very crucial. They don’t need to uproot the trees in order to plow around. When we were down there the tiller incurred a dent on one of its horizontal bars protecting the blades. Kevin suggests that it should be removed, straightened out with hammer and put back otherwise in a long run will jam the blade and render the tiller obsolete.
The body of the church at BIMC both in Pageri and Borongole should be involved in a collective community work at least once a week to help with the work in the garden. Every plantation done on the River site and beyond the river should be done in the name of Operation Nehemiah to be supervised by the BIMC. All production should benefit the body of Christ that is the widows, the orphan’s, and the families in need. Surplus should be sold in Juba or else where to generate income to sustain the church and its functions. Individual families should be encouraged to use the tractor to plow their gardens as long as they can contribute financially to maintain fuel and grease expenses.

Short History of our ONMI presence in Borongole

In January 2004, when we first opened up Borongole, (Beth Israel), the current mission compound of Operation Nehemiah and the surrounding villages, there was no a single habitant living in the area.

This area was nothing but a wilderness. Our current mission house was an abandoned II WW stone structure to the left - with roof blown off, windows and doors torn down, trees and grasses had grown inside the building. Nehemiah field clinic was none existent.

After the renovation- this is now ONMI Missions house

The Commission of Magwi county, Emilio Iga
Center and deputy commissioner Peter Otim far right, received our first mission team who came from the USA to open up office for Operation Nehemiah in Magwi county in January 2004

In January2004, Pageri Payam adminstrator, Mr.
Benson Safe to the left gave this building to serve as ONMI temporary office until we were able able to move to our current Location

The Sudan people Liberation army (SPLA) and its political wing the SPLM were in charge of the region’s security and administration. Road conditions were very terrible. However, the region was porous and equally roamed by the Ugandan rebels, the Lord Resistance army (LRA) who were rendering havoc and striking fears in the hearts of those trying to return to their home land.

Between 2004 and 2006, we had witnessed deadly road ambushes and brutality of the LRA rebels who came as close as one mile within the reach of our compound. Many of our field staff left for the fear of their lives and a number of missionaries changed their minds never to return. In the midst of all this uncertain security, we stayed the course of implementing ONMI Vision, Critics had called our move arrogant and a miscalculated adventure at best.

However, we did not give into such critics nor did we focus on the surrounding circumstances which were real and deadly. We kept our eyes on Christ and press on. . By faith and courage we moved into this uncharted region abandoned for 25 yrs as compelled by un waving hope to take the Sudan for Christ. Taking one family and one village at the time, we established our mission com pound to serve as the base ofr
operation in Borongole (Beth Israel.) In due course, and by the power of God, slowly but surely, we are seeing God is bringing everything together in our effort to building Pageri Payam in Magwi County to be a city on the hill. He is setting Judeo-Christian Biblical world view to serve as an example for the rest of the Sudan.

In the course of these challenging and inspiring adventurous quest, we dedicated every step we took in prayers and allowed the Lord to guide us like in the days of Moses, Joshua, Ezra and Nehemiah.

On June 17, my mission trip came to an end. It was a bitter sweet parting with staff and church members, who have been so faithful to their work. Back home here in the states, my dear family was eagerly awaiting my return, and I was grateful for uneventful flights and a joyful reunion in Boston. We are looking forward to when the Lord will open the door for us to travel as a family to New Sudan. Until then, our hearts are full with all that God is doing among His people there.

The future is bright because Christ shall have preeminence in ALL things. Hallelujah! For More information please visit us at

Or write to

Operation Nehemiah

PO Box 2

Cheshire, MA 01225