Note: At the bottom of this page, there’s a form you can use to send us a farewell message.
Dear Prayer Partner,
We moved to Nairobi on 9 Nov 2017 with a desire to be here on a long-term basis. This was our first inter-continental move in obedience to God’s directions. We consider ourselves to be pilgrims and strangers on God’s earth. It’s time to move again. In the first week of October 2018, God willing, we intend to return to Kerala, India.
We are grateful to God for the privilege He gave us to serve a small section of God’s church in Nairobi. We are grateful to our brethren in Nairobi for receiving our ministry. God used Bishop Dr David Oginde and his deputy, Bishop Ken to encourage me from time to time through their sermons and personal interactions. Had it not been for their kind words, I wouldn’t have lasted even for these 11 months in Nairobi.
In the absence of an official professional and cultural orientation for international staff, God used Rev Dr Mburu, a missiologist, and Pastor John Ndegwa, a pioneer missionary, to orient us from time to time.
L to R: Jessimol, Jane Thuo, Joy, Rev Thuo Mburu and Missionary John Ndegwa
The Thuos had lived in India and we were contemporaries at SAIACS. They understand us perfectly. It takes a missionary to understand another missionary. It is not surprising that we encountered culture shock in this country. In addition, there was a culture shock with regard to our new work environment. We came here to work with a church but instead found ourselves in highly centralized corporate entity! We greatly appreciate Rev Mburu’s and Missionary Ndegwa’s support to help us cope with these changes.
Anand bhai and family, along with Sis Denise, played a crucial role in providing us vital cultural and missiological inputs. We are grateful for their incessant support and friendship. “Anand bhai” is not a Gujarati. God called him to show His love to the Gujarati people. He learned Gujarati and even adopted a Gujarati name! I don’t think there’s any other non-Gujarati in Nairobi who is as proficient in Gujarati language and culture for the purposes of the God’s kingdom. For obvious reasons, I cannot post his real name or photograph.
We are truly grateful to the members/pastors of CITAM and especially CITAM Parklands, in particular, for their love, hospitality and assistance. Thanks to all the pastors and missionaries for their warmth and encouragement. You made us feel welcome.
I have to mention a few names because these brothers and sisters invited us to their homes for a time of fellowship over food. Aliens who have lived in foreign lands know the value of this kind gesture. We got to see a good cross-section of Nairobi because we were invited to palatial homes as well as to one-room houses:
Thank you Rev Thuo Mburu, (Deputy Senior Pastor, CITAM Valley Road); Pastor Martin Mbandu, Senior Pastor, CITAM Embakasi; Rev James Munyiri, Pastor at CITAM Parklands; Pastor Timothy Gathii Gicharu, Pastor at CITAM Parklands; Pastor Janet Kariuki, Pastor at CITAM Parklands; Elder John Kamigwi and family; Elder Samson Burgei and family; Elder John Mwendwa; Elder Musembi; Br Charles Mwenda; Br Jimmy and Elder June; Elder Geoffrey Irugu and family; Deacon Selvaraj C. and family; Pastor John Ndegwa and family; Br Srinivas D and family; Br Jwanesh and family; Br Deepak and Renu; Br Bonnie Musambi and family; Br Navneet and family; Br Lalji; Br Shailen Shah; Elder Patricia Seth; Sis Catherine Gaceri; Sis Suraiya; Sis Jane Murage; Sis Magdalene Nyokabi; Sisters Margaret and Monica; Br Noel Johnson; Br Jolly and Dr Mary; Br Shaji Philip; Sis Peddita; Sis Soster; Br Duncan and Sis Nancy; Pastor Nigel and family; Dr Daniel and Patricia Kemie, Br Francis Kanja and family, David Gachanja and family, Rev Abok and family, David Kagika and family, and Br Rakesh Sharma. Asante sana.
The true center of gravity of this assembly’s outreach to the Indian Diaspora lies in the houses of our Gujarati brethren – such as Navneet Bhai and Neela Ben. These are the people who need to lead the assembly’s efforts to win the Gujarati and Punjabi population that forms the majority of “Asians” in Nairobi. (South Indians and Kenyans, please take a back seat; otherwise, history will not forgive you!)
Sachin and Geeta
Our heartfelt appreciation and gratitude to this family that hosts a home fellowship – complete with a love feast – in the warmth of their lovely home, week after week. Thank you, Sachin, Geeta and Bhena Ben.
Thank you, Mr Nagin Pattni, who is a Nicodemus of our times, I believe.
Neela Ben ties a rakhi on her brother Nagin Pattni’s hand
We are grateful to Elder Musembi and his family for looking after our children Joel and Christina while we were away in Mombasa. Dr Jane Mwangi, Sis Emmy Rubadiri and Sis Peddita helped us hunt for schools when we arrived in Nairobi. They drove us to various schools. Sadly, the schools that our children needed were out of our reach.
Pastor Nigel took time off to take us to “Nairobi Town” in a Matatu. He taught me how to stay safe in that concrete jungle that is famous for Nairobbery!
In February 2018, when our son Jonathan was about to leave for Jinja, Uganda, Elder Patricia, Sis Consolata and Mrs Raj came to our house to pray for him. We are grateful to them.
We are also grateful to Christine and Alice who accompanied Jessy week after week to conduct a prayer meeting in Sis Rosie’s house. They were also Jessy’s prayer partners.
Special thanks to Elders John Mwendwa, Odhiambo, Geoffrey Irugu, Mutari and fellow pastors who supported my ministry in prayer. I used to seek their prayer support in a special way.
Mama Baracka! How can we forget you? Thank you, for your love and blessings.
With Rev James Munyiri, Timothy Gathii Gicharu, Sarah and Janet Kariuki at Heaven’s Gate Prayer Mountain
Thanks are due to the Pastoral and admin staff at CITAM Parklands, led by Rev Stanley Mungathia, for their timely assistance and advice on numerous occasions.
- Thank you, Pastor Bob and Sarah for receiving us at the Jomo Kenyatta Airport when we arrived in Nairobi. Thanks to Deepak and Renu for welcoming us at the airport the very first time we came on 11/9/2017.
- I’m grateful to the Senior Pastor Mungathia for the number of opportunities he gave me to preach in the church on Sundays. Thank you, Daktari!
- I am grateful to Rev Munyiri for taking us on a tour of Nairobi when we first visited in September 2017. Can’t forget how he surprised us with a free-roaming Kienyeji, brought all the way from his home in Nyeri!
- Pastor Timothy took us to his ancestral home in Muranga county during Christmas 2017. That was our first trip to a rustic home in Kenya. Moreover, I am thankful to Pastor Timothy and the leadership of the Youth Ministry for giving me a number of opportunities to minister to the youth on Sundays and during Teens’ weeks. I’m grateful for the creative freedom they gave me to craft my own Safari presentation and lesson on Embracing Purity in Relationships for the Youth Church.
- Thank you, Pastor Janet and Pastor Sarah for your friendship and open feedback.
- Thank you, Br Erick, “Pastor” Emma, the photography team (David Mwihiri, et. al.) and Br Brown for all your love and help.
- Thank you, catering team and Team Parapet, for your prompt and excellent services.
The friendly and supportive staff of the Finance office. Asante sana.
We are also grateful for the support we received from various departments at the CITAM Head Office.
Thank you, Rev Kwame Rubadiri and Pastor Timothy, for being mindful of me when Swahili songs were being sung; you took the trouble to tell me the meaning of those songs. Thank you, Dr Paul and Lynn Kohls for your encouragement, fellowship and your sense of humor!
Special thanks to Rev Abok and Elder John Mwendwa for their friendship and love. They, along with Elder Mutari, actively participated in Asian outreach and other ministries. On September 19, God sent Rev Abok to my office to pray for me. He didn’t know anything about my decision to leave Kenya. That shows how much he is Spirit-led. Praise God for such men and women of God.
I am grateful to Deacon Selvaraj and their family for their support and advice. Although the Deacon is from the southern Indian state of Tamilnadu, he has a broad, cross-cultural perspective and rich experience in leadership.
I am grateful to Bibi Sam, an ethnodoxologist and musician, who came to Parklands to teach us about the use of music in mission.
Dr Leah prays for Susannah. “This is so richly biblical,” commented Dr Leah
Our family had the privilege of knowing Peter and Susanna Harrington, who came twice to Parklands to conduct workshops on the use of Bharatanatyam (Indian Dance) in mission to narrate biblical stories. Watch a sample video here. It’s a shame that sessions led by such committed experts were so poorly attended by members of the Parklands assembly. And yet, our guests were very patient and kind.
Thank you, Sis Jane Murage, for arranging a visit to the National Museums for the Harringtons.
Elder Patricia, Sis Jane Murage, Dr Jessimol and Dr Leah
Thanks to Women Ministry executive for giving Dr Jessimol opportunities to explain the challenges of “Asian” ministry.
We realize that it is impossible to mention everyone in CITAM Parklands by name. We are grateful to all of you. Thank you for your warmth, love and prayers. God bless you.
I thank God for Br Enzo Graziano who, against all odds, offered to train members of CITAM Parklands in Christian entrepreneurship, sales, and personal branding. His “Sales Boot Camp” was like a revival meeting. He offered us the very course for which major banks in East Africa pay through their nose! Thanks, Br Enzo. Praise God for this apostle to the marketplace. Thanks to all the 26 young business owners without whom the training wouldn’t have been a success. You can be “positioned” for impact forever without actually impacting any one; this was actually a great impact on others in a positive way!
I am grateful to the leaders of Saturday PM for giving me the opportunity to minister to them twice. May the Lord multiply their efforts as they draw several youths to Jesus Christ and His Word.
I am also grateful to Br William Ojonyo, the National Chairman of KIFWA, for allowing me to speak to the directors of Kenya’s international logistics companies.
More than 70 people responded to a Missionary Challenge at CITAM Embakasi.
Thank you, Captain Rev Mbandu for your invitation, love and encouragement.
Thank you, CITAM, for the opportunity afforded to me and other pastors to study Professional Mediation course run by PAC University.
Finally, I must thank our church in Cochin, Kerala State, India for praying for us everyday. We are grateful to Pastor Samson Rajanbabu, our parents, our friends and relatives for the encouragement and intercession on our behalf.
WHY LEAVE SO SOON?
To most people who asked me that question, I just said, “God is calling us to a wider ministry.”
Surely, there should be a reason why God should take us away from CITAM after having brought us here all the way from India. In a shame-based society, no one even wants to imagine that there could be human factors involved; everyone is just happy to reiterate that God is the one responsible for taking us away! Indeed God is. But, we are grateful to God for the human factors that made it easy for us to obey God’s voice.
We shall head to Kerala, India. We are still searching for a house to live in. We might make Kerala our base unless God moves us elsewhere. If you wish to know more, and to support us through your intercession, feel free to write to us.
LET’S KEEP IN TOUCH
Whether we are based in India or in East Africa, given today’s technology, the Lord can minister through us to any people anywhere. Therefore, we eagerly desire for your prayers on our behalf. Links to our latest prayer newsletters will be posted on the home page of http://www.PhilipEapen.com.
- Email: philip dot eapen at gmail dot com, jessy dot eapen at gmail dot com
- “Like” my personal Facebook Page and my photography page to receive updates
A special request: Please take into consideration the current social, religious and political realities in my home country when you send an email to me make a comment/post on my on-line pages. Our emails are read by agencies. Even Whatsapp groups get infiltrated and observed. Please avoid misleading terms like “conversion”, “evangelism,” “mission,” “church,” “prayer meeting,” “fellowship,” etc. We don’t convert anybody, do we? Avoid any reference to the Nebuchadnezzars and Pharaohs or to the Sauls who roam the Damascus roads. Avoid mentioning terms that cause trouble. Use encrypted messaging platforms or encrypted documents to exchange information.
PARTNER WITH US
There are underprivileged individuals/families that we support financially in Kenya. We wish to continue that support even after our departure. If you wish to partner with us in the ministry, or if you wish to support our son Jonathan in his missionary life, please contact us via email for more information.
We wish to “raise the bar” in terms of the ethics of fund-raising. Here are some guidelines for giving:
- Please do not stop your support to another minister/ministry in order to support us.
- Consider your financial status before you give. Do NOT give to anyone who is financially better-off than you. NEVER ever support a standard of living that is higher than yours – whether of individuals or of organizations. Always give to those who are financially weaker, according to your ability.
- Feel free to ask how your money was used.
Asante sana. Thank you for taking the time to read this. You are free to post a comment using the form given below. God bless! See you in “God’s Own Country!” Plan to spend your next holiday in Kerala! Click on the image below to know more. (No, Kerala Tourism doesn’t pay me for this! :-))