LATEST NEWS

The team knew to expect dishonesty as they planned the outreach. But they were undeterred.

During this unusual and perhaps fearful, difficult or challenging time of the Coronavirus pandemic, we need daily reminders that we can trust our good and faithful Lord and Savior, no matter what we face. Here’s how three of our partners have seen Him at work, revealing Himself to be more than trustworthy during these unusual times. 

In this episode, Kent Reisenauer is telling us all about his last trip to South Africa and Zambia.

He’s talking about visiting Johan and Lesley not long after their home burned down, delivering pillowcase dresses and knitted hats from some US churches to remote villages across the Zambezi River, the progress and impact of Eugene Kalunga’s village school, what happened when Eugene put him on the spot to share something with the students at Excellence Christian Academy, and the baptisms of new Zulu believers he got to witness in South Africa.

Fifi Smith, Project Joseph, Kelly and Cherise Smith, South Africa

Undeterred: Avoiding the Landmines of the Mission Field

The team knew to expect dishonesty as they planned the outreach. But they were undeterred.

3 stories of His trustworthiness during the pandemic

3 Stories of His Trustworthiness During the Pandemic

During this unusual and perhaps fearful, difficult or challenging time of the Coronavirus pandemic, we need daily reminders that we can trust our good and faithful Lord and Savior, no matter what we face. Here’s how three of our partners have seen Him at work, revealing Himself to be more than trustworthy during these unusual times. 

Kent Reisenauer, Zambia, South Africa, podcast

On the Spot in Zambia featuring Kent Reisenauer (Podcast Episode)

In this episode, Kent Reisenauer is telling us all about his last trip to South Africa and Zambia.

He’s talking about visiting Johan and Lesley not long after their home burned down, delivering pillowcase dresses and knitted hats from some US churches to remote villages across the Zambezi River, the progress and impact of Eugene Kalunga’s village school, what happened when Eugene put him on the spot to share something with the students at Excellence Christian Academy, and the baptisms of new Zulu believers he got to witness in South Africa.

The day of the Project Christmas Blessing event dawned with dark clouds hanging low over the grassy hills of KwaZulu Natal, South Africa, promising to live up to the ominous weather predicted by the local meteorologists. The government had even issued an announcement that schools must release students early, so they could traverse the dirt paths over the area’s steeply graded hills before the heavy rain and lightning made it too dangerous. But the event could not be rescheduled. It was today or never, so…

ITMI’s Kent Reisenauer arrived at the Lusaka airport, weary after over 24 hours of travel. With some trepidation, he…

In part 2 of this interview with ITMI’s Kelly and Cherise Smith, they’re letting us in on what it’s like sharing the Gospel as “white people” living in an African village, sharing some exciting new places God is taking their ministry, a little about their Thanksgivings in South Africa and why they’re now doing something they thought they wouldn’t do when they first arrived in KwaZulu Natal. 

piotr zaremba, podcast, poland

A Backdrop for Miracles featuring Piotr Zaremba (Podcast)

Piotr Zaremba remembers memorable moments in the Bible Translation project and how they have impacted the ministry of his church and led to the planting of 14 churches and a myriad of outreach ministries.

Tim Keller, Zambia

2 New Roles for Tim Keller (and why one is temporary)

During the dry season, ITMI’s Timothy Keller travels to remote villages encouraging, preaching and delivering bibles and discipleship materials. As they enter rainy season, Timothy has a new ministry opportunity and a new temporary role serving God’s people in Kabwe.

south africa, kelly and cherise smith, fifi smith

Sharing the Gospel Among the Zulu featuring Kelly and Cherise Smith (Podcast Episode)

In part 2 of this interview with ITMI’s Kelly and Cherise Smith, they’re letting us in on what it’s like sharing the Gospel as “white people” living in an African village, sharing some exciting new places God is taking their ministry, a little about their Thanksgivings in South Africa and why they’re now doing something they thought they wouldn’t do when they first arrived in KwaZulu Natal. 

THE CONTEXT

According to the CIA's 2019 estimate, South Africa ranked number one in HIV/AIDS related deaths, with about 72,000. South Africa also has the highest reported number of people living with HIV/AIDS, about 7.5 million.

Much of this is related to the Animistic practices that are common among South African tribes.

Because of their commitment to their Animistic witchcraft religious practices, they are widely accepting of the message of Christianity, but few find the courage to renounce Animism all together and confess Jesus as the one and only Lord, particularly if that message comes from a person outside their tribe.

Since the message of the Gospel is exponentially more powerful coming from a fellow member of their tribe, the testimony of Zulu believers is the ideal way to share the Gospel.

 

WHAT YOUR SUPPORT DOES

Proclaim the Gospel

Your support of Kelly and Cherise Smith allows them to live in KwaZulu Natal, South Africa, where they help Zulu believers put the Gospel message before the Zulu in their community - in the Zulu language - as often as possible. This is done through various outreaches as doors are open and resources are provided.

Equip Zulu Believers for Ministry

Kelly works with young Zulu men, training them to become Biblical leaders and pastors through a seminary he helped start. The Smiths are involved with the local Zulu church in their village, providing support and encouragement.

Community Outreach and Education

Your support of the Smiths means they can live and serve in KwaZulu Natal and are available to be involved in educational programs and outreaches.

HISTORY

Cherise is a South African national who came to America, where she met Kelly. The Lord called them to live among and minister to the people of the Zulu tribe in KwaZulu Natal, South Africa and they have been doing so since 2006.

The Smiths established 7 Rivers Farm, where they lived outside of Durban, South Africa until 2021.

The farm provides housing for the local Zulu pastor, as well as a ministry base for the Smith's daughter, Fifi. It was named for the 7 times you need to cross the river to get from Durban to the farm.

The farm also provides the 7 Rivers team with resources with which to reach and bless the community with, such as the Chwabasi seeds that young women from the community can make beads with to craft jewelry for a bit of income, and the Moringa trees whose seeds yield a powder that is beneficial to many locals who struggle with health challenges such as diabetes and HIV/AIDS.

When Kelly and Cherise Smith arrived home at 7 Rivers Farm in KwaZulu Natal last June, winter holiday was in full swing for the cluster of three Zulu villages in the area. They’d done – once again – one of the hardest things about being on the mission field. They’d…

In this episode, Kelly and Cherise Smith are sharing what it’s like living among the Zulu tribe in KwaZulu Natal, South Africa. They’re sharing some remarkable things Zulu women and girls do as part of their daily lives, the extents people are going to so they can attend Kelly and Cherise’s monthly “Bible Verse Shop” outreach and a few only-in-africa stories of snake bites, late night labors and extreme runs to the hospital!

Fifi glanced at her friend. She could tell Sandisiwe was fighting tears. Sandisiwe’s explanation tumbled from her lips…

south africa, smiths

2 New Doors Opening for the 7 Rivers Team and Why We are Jazzed About Them

When Kelly and Cherise Smith arrived home at 7 Rivers Farm in KwaZulu Natal last June, winter holiday was in full swing for the cluster of three Zulu villages in the area. They’d done – once again – one of the hardest things about being on the mission field. They’d…

Kelly and Cherise Smith, Fifi Smith, South Africa

Life Among the Zulu featuring Kelly and Cherise Smith

In this episode, Kelly and Cherise Smith are sharing what it’s like living among the Zulu tribe in KwaZulu Natal, South Africa. They’re sharing some remarkable things Zulu women and girls do as part of their daily lives, the extents people are going to so they can attend Kelly and Cherise’s monthly “Bible Verse Shop” outreach and a few only-in-africa stories of snake bites, late night labors and extreme runs to the hospital!

south africa, smith

Sandisiwe’s Answer to Prayer

Fifi glanced at her friend. She could tell Sandisiwe was fighting tears. Sandisiwe’s explanation tumbled from her lips…

“We spent this past weekend officiating a funeral, which is normal for our ministry team to do once – sometimes twice each month.  It has even happened, a few times, where there’s two in one weekend.”

Sunlight falling from the wide, blue sky above the hills of Zulu Natal, South Africa glinted from the water as it tumbled from the small spigot into the black plastic 5-gallon bucket. The community water source is atop one of the many steep hills that envelope this Zulu settlement. From the high vantage point, the surrounding bubbly terrain stretches to the horizon. Traversing the hills is tough, even for the young.But for the elderly to do it while carrying full buckets of water is…

South Africa, smith, onseepkans

What You May Not Know About Funerals in South Africa

“We spent this past weekend officiating a funeral, which is normal for our ministry team to do once – sometimes twice each month.  It has even happened, a few times, where there’s two in one weekend.”

Fifi Smith, South Africa

What Everyone Ought to Know About Fifi Smith

Sunlight falling from the wide, blue sky above the hills of Zulu Natal, South Africa glinted from the water as it tumbled from the small spigot into the black plastic 5-gallon bucket. The community water source is atop one of the many steep hills that envelope this Zulu settlement. From the high vantage point, the surrounding bubbly terrain stretches to the horizon. Traversing the hills is tough, even for the young.But for the elderly to do it while carrying full buckets of water is…