On a sweltering Sunday in July, more than 21,000 people crowded into a soccer stadium in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo.
They waited all day, not to watch a game but to hear a widely known and respected radio evangelist. The preacher? Rev. Paul Mpindi, The Back to God Hour’s French-ministry leader.
The rally, organized by a Kinshasa radio station and local pastors, drew people who regularly listen to Mpindi’s messages over radio, loudspeakers in the marketplace, or the Internet. About 7,000 people attended a similar event in the nearby city of Boma.
“I am still overwhelmed by the crowds of people and their response to Christ’s invitation,” Mpindi said.
“Sometimes we wonder if we are reaching people [through the radio broadcasts]. We don’t always know how God is using our ministry, but he is! It is amazing to see what God is doing in Africa.”
The five-hour rallies began with enthusiastic singing and prayers led by local pastors. Three 1,000-member choirs and local bands led the worship in Kinshasa.
At the rally in Kinshasa 5,000 people came forward to commit their lives to Jesus. In Boma 300 responded to the invitation. Local churches trained volunteers to meet with the new believers and disciple them in the Christian faith.
Some were so eager that they jumped over barriers to pray with volunteers. One policeman who was at the rally to provide security also responded to the invitation to accept Christ as Savior.
“It was amazing to see so many people praying that day,” Mpindi said. “Life is so difficult for so many in Africa. But when we reach the end of our own resources, people find that God is the only way.”
Rev. Paul Mpindi’s program, “Perspectives Réformées,” airs 260 times each week on stations in Africa, Europe, and the Caribbean. In addition, thousands of people hear daily broadcasts several times a day, six days a week, in four major marketplaces in Kinshasa. Since 1999 the number of people who contact the BTGH as a result of the French-language ministry has grown to 20,000 per month from 800 per year.