Students, faculty, staff and alumni of The Baptist College of Florida (BCF) in Graceville know the college’s registered trademark by heart, “Changing the World Through the Unchanging Word.®” They are also always looking for opportunities to learn more about missions efforts around the world. For many BCF students, one of those extraordinary opportunities came to campus in the form of a Maasai missionary.
On Tuesday, September 20, David Kereto, Executive-Director of Maasai Evangelistic Association (MEA), came to the Graceville campus to share his testimony, experience, and involvement in missions with BCF students. Kereto, himself a Maasai, was groomed throughout his childhood and teenage years to assume his father’s position as the local witch-doctor until he attended an evangelistic crusade at the urging of a persistent friend who was a believer. Upon accepting Christ, Kereto fled from his family for six years in fear for his life. Tribal tradition called for his death as a means of “clearing the path” for another candidate.
During those years, Kereto pursued biblical education until he felt God calling him to return to his homeland and return to his people. Kereto’s arrival in his home village created a stir, to the point that his father even placed a curse on him. Through Kereto’s survival of the curse, he was able to proclaim that it was the One True God who had delivered him and he continued to preach in his village until many in his village have now come to know Christ.
Kereto shared his remarkable life story in three sessions at BCF with one session relating to his testimony and the others relating to his work with the MEA, a non-governmental Christian organization committed to ministry in rural Maasailand. The ministry of MEA includes evangelism and church planting, water projects, ministry to the nomadic cattle herders, formal education among children, shelter for displaced Maasai girls, and ministry training for Maasai pastors and church leaders.
In listening to Kereto’s presentation, BCF students gathered many valuable lessons, including his commitment to share Christ that literally put his life on the line, and his “Pauline” compassion for reaching his homeland. According to BCF Theology Division Chair and Associate Professor of Missions Rich Elligson, there is also value added in looking at the persistence of a witness which ultimately brought this man to Christ. “Had his friend given up on Kereto, he may never have come to Christ,” Elligson said.
New BCF student Austin Newborn spoke of Kereto’s inspiration, “It was a great encouragement to hear how Mr. Kereto and the Maasai Evangelistic Association is working in Africa. Hearing from a missionary on the frontline makes me even more excited about where God will lead me after I graduate.”
For more information on how to get involved with Maasai Evangelistic Association’s mission work or to learn about the Missions degrees offered at The Baptist College of Florida, please call 800.328.2660 ext. 478 or visit the website at www.baptistcollege.edu.