From Witch Doctor to Disciple of Christ

Bosco was a witch doctor. You helped to change his story!

Bosco was a witch doctor.

He also worked as a farmer and fisherman, but he made part of his living in Apac, Uganda, by healing people from bewitchments and curses. People often found their way to his house, and for the cost of a goat, he would help with counseling, curing sickness, or casting out spirits that they believed were hindering them.

How Bosco helped his patients depended on their situation. Sometimes people would bring a chicken along, and Bosco would slaughter the chicken and pour the blood over the person to take away a bewitchment. People also paid Bosco to place a curse on someone, like a neighbor with whom they were arguing.

While witchcraft is not very common in some parts of the world, it is fairly common in Uganda. People in Bosco’s community generally liked and trusted him, but there were a few people who accused him of being dishonest and cheating people out of their money. Some Christians in his community could be particularly mean to him.

But you helped to change the story.

The Importance of Leadership Training

Earlier this year, Opio Brian, a pastor from Bosco’s community, attended Timothy Leadership Training (TLT) cofacilitated by your Resonate missionary Anthony Sytsma and Ugandan ministry leaders. Resonate missionaries use TLT to equip pastors and lay leaders for ministry in countries where training can be difficult to come by. Your support of Resonate helps make this training possible.

Part of each TLT training session includes pastors and leaders making an action plan to put what they have learned into practice. At one session, Opio learned about the importance of caring for people in ministry, so he and his church decided to start a counseling fellowship.

God worked in surprising ways.

A Warm and Loving Welcome

When news of the counseling fellowship spread, Bosco was intrigued. Counseling people was part of his role as a witch doctor, and he wanted to see how Opio and his church approached the work.

As Bosco walked to the counseling fellowship at the church, he was a little skeptical. In the past, he had been treated poorly by some Christians. But Bosco was surprised to be warmly welcomed by Opio and the church. They talked with him, got to know him a bit, and gave him a gift of soap and sugar.

“Thank you for coming,” they told Bosco as he left. “We really love you.”

And Bosco came back a second time.

There Is Perfect Love

The second time visiting the counseling fellowship, Bosco told Opio that he had never experienced as much love as the church showed him. Opio told him that there is greater love than the love of their church. In fact, there is not only greater love but perfect love—the love of Christ.

The Holy Spirit was at work through this conversation. Captivated by the good news of God’s perfect love, Bosco made a decision that changed his life.

“When I used to pass by people of other churches, they would just abuse me and insult me,” he told Opio. “But today you really showed me love. And you’ve told me that Jesus is the only one who can really show me true love, and I want to surrender all that I’ve been doing and know Jesus as my Savior.”

Bosco committed his life to Christ!

A New Life in Christ

Bosco went home that day and burned all of his witch doctor tools. He is no longer a witch doctor and is making a living by fishing and farming. You can often find him sharing about what God has done in his life, or at church, where he has become a deacon.

People in the community could hardly believe the difference they saw in Bosco’s life. Some people were so curious that they decided to check out the church—and some are also becoming followers of Christ!

Thank you for helping to support pastors like Opio!

“I thank God because the man changed to living for Jesus Christ as a result of being loved, as a result of the good training we had,” said Opio. “I thank God so, so much because God changed his life. He is now able to walk with Jesus. He is able to testify to what he has been doing. Now he is transformed.”

Thank you for sharing Christ’s love with people throughout the world. Will you please pray for Bosco as he grows as a disciple of Christ? Pray that he will keep his eyes on Christ. Pray that the Holy Spirit will strengthen Bosco and that he will continue to learn more about God’s perfect love.

Country: 
Uganda
Region: 
East & Southern Africa
Missionary: 
Anthony and Sara Sytsma
Initiative: 
Timothy Leadership Training
Tag: 
Missional Leaders