Lloyd and Jan Chinn. Missionaries across Africa. Serving Now!

Lloyd and Jan, Nkwanta Ghana (Oti Region)

 

Thank you for reading my blog during Black History Month as I highlighted some of my heroes. I hope that you have learned a lot and that your heart has been turned toward missions. 

If you’ve been moved to go – click here and find out how: 

Here’s our story ….

Lloyd and Jan Chinn are native to Texas. Lloyd from Edna, TX and Jan from Houston, TX.

Lloyd and Jan took short mission trips to Ghana for 4 years.

In 2002, Lloyd received his ThM from Dallas Theological Seminary and that same year they were appointed as long term missionaries with WorldVenture. They moved to Ghana in 2004 with their two sons and opened WorldVenture’s new field of ministry in Ghana. The Chinn’s served in the town of Nkwanta in Ghana’s Oti Region. Their ministry focus was Pastoral Leadership Development. As they became for familiar with the community, they added Orphan Care, Educational Development, Women’s Empowerment and Community Economic Development. They were blessed by The Lord to design and begin the construction of a Leadership Development Center; a Short Term Missions home; and, a Poultry Farm.

In 2013, they returned to the USA on furlough and were appointed as the Global Initiatives Director for Africa beginning in March 2014.

Lloyd and Jan are the first African Americans to serve as Global Directors for WorldVenture. The new role has added 13 additional countries to their Africa ministry life.

Lloyd and Jan are also serving MANI (the Movement for African National Initiatives) as the North America Diaspora Coordinator. They also serve at Crossover Bible Fellowship as leads of the Missions Ministry (Front Door to Frontier).

Lloyd’s firm message to the African American church has been the same from the beginning of their journey: “Pray! Pay! and/or Pack!”

If you want to serve long term in Africa — we invite you to join our WorldVenture Africa Family! Get in contact with us, we will gladly show you the way! Email us at J.Chinn@WorldVenture.com or at missions@crossoverbf.com

Sherry Thomas. Missionary in Liberia, Ghana, Mali & Nigeria. Serving now!

Minister Sherry Thomas is a full time missionary to West Africa.   Sherry heard the Spirit of the Lord telling her to received her to go to West Africa and teach the Bible to the Arab Muslims in their language.  And she obeyed.

Sherry served over 3 yrs. in Liberia. In Liberia taught Biology and Chemistry at the Carver Mission Academy; organized the Women’s Bible Study and a Minister’s in Training Program (First United Christ Temple Church) at the King Gray village. 

After Liberia, Sherry served 4yrs. in Ghana. In Ghana assisted in initiating and chartering Medical Mission’s aspect of Carver International Missions. She also taught Preventative and Emergency Medicine protocols to lay persons and African missionaries affiliated with Pioneers Africa Missions. While in Ghana she had the opportunity to visit and minister in the rural areas of Togo, Benin, Guinea, and Mali.  

In 2005, while on a home assignment in the USA, Sherry was diagnosed with 3rd stage breast cancer – the Lord healed her and she immediately returned to missions service in Ghana.

After Ghana, Sherry served 8 yrs. in Mali with Wycliffe Bible Translators and with SIM.

Sherry says “When “life happens” – and it did and will continue to happen, you must hold on to what God has said over your life. No matter what happens, God will see you through until what He has ordained comes to pass.”

Sherry is. now serving in Jos, Plateau State, Nigeria as the Trauma Healing Coordinator for SIM Nigeria.

Sherry is a board certified licensed Surgical Pathology Assistant and is a certified Mental Health Coach in addition to being a Trauma Healing Training Facilitator.

If you want to know Sherry better, just send her an email. She’d love to hear from you. E-mail address: sherry.thomas@sim.org

Henry Highland Garnet served in Jamaica, Liberia, New York & Pittsburgh; 1842 – 1882

Henry Highland Garnet. Born into slavery in Maryland in 1815, Garnet and his family escaped to New York City when he was nine years old. In New York City, Garnet attended the African Free School. In the 1830s, Garnet continued his education at several institutions. He eventually ended up at the Oneida Institute in Whitesboro, New York, finishing his studies in 1840. He became a Presbyterian minister and served as the first pastor of the Liberty Street Negro Presbyterian Church in Troy, New York, beginning in 1842.

His “Call to Rebellion” speech in 1843 encouraged slaves to rebel against their owners. In 1850, Garnet traveled to England and Scotland, where he spoke widely against the practice of slavery. He also supported allowing blacks to emigrate to other lands, such as Liberia in Africa, a country made up mostly of freed slaves. In 1852, Garnet traveled to Jamaica to serve as a missionary. Ill health forced his return to the U.S. in 1855, where he continued his work in the abolitionist movement. In 1856, he served as pastor of the Fifteenth Street Presbyterian Church in Washington, DC.

On February 12, 1865, while in Washington, Garnet made history when he was chosen by President Abraham Lincoln to speak to the House of Representatives—making him the first African American to preach a sermon in the U.S. House of Representatives.

In 1868, Garnet was appointed president of Avery College in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Later he returned to New York City as a pastor at the Shiloh Presbyterian Church (formerly the First Colored Presbyterian Church, and now St. James Presbyterian Church in Harlem).  

Fulfilling a longtime dream, Garnet traveled to Africa in 1881, appointed as the U.S. Minister to Liberia. He died in 1882, a few months after his arrival. Garnet was given a state funeral by the Liberian government and was buried at Palm Grove Cemetery in Monrovia.

The humblest peasant is as free in the sight of God as the proudest monarch that ever swayed a sceptre. Liberty is a spirit sent from God and like its great Author is no respecter of persons.” 

Henry Highland Garnet

Amanda Berry Smith served in Egypt, Sierra Leone, and Liberia; 1876 – 1912

Evangelist and missionary Amanda Berry Smith (1837-1915) became well known for her beautiful voice and inspired teaching and hence, opportunities to evangelize in the South and West opened up for her.

In 1876, she was invited to speak and sing in England and to travel in a first class cabin provided by her friends. The captain invited her to conduct a religious service on board and she was so modest that the other passengers spread word of her and resulted in her staying in England and Scotland for a year and a half.

She next traveled to and ministered in India, then spent eight years in Africa (Egypt, Sierra Leone, Liberia) working with churches and evangelizing. While in Africa she suffered from repeated attacks of “African Fever” but persisted in her work. In her journal entry for February 5, 1884 she writes:

“Second Gospel Temperance meeting. Surely the Spirit of the Lord is with us, and He is blessing us greatly. Not so much liberty in speaking, but God is with us, and we are expecting great things. Oh, Lord, for Jesus’ sake, answer prayer, and send us the Holy Ghost to quicken and revive us.”

She founded the Amanda Smith Orphans’ Home for African-American children in a suburb of Chicago. She was called “God’s image carved in ebony.” Amanda Smith retired to Sebring, Florida in 1912 due to failing health. She died in 1915 at the age of 78.

Amanda has one of very few written autobiographies by black americans of that time period.  You can read her an electronic copy of her autobiography “An Autobiography. The Story of the Lord’s Dealings with Mrs. Amanda Smith the Colored Evangelist; Containing an Account of Her Life Work of Faith, and Her Travels in America, England, Ireland, Scotland, India, and Africa, as an Independent Missionary”at this link –  Autobiography of Amanda Smith

Sarah E. Gorham served in Liberia and Sierra Leone; 1880 – 1894

Sarah E. Gorham served 8 years as an independent missionary. In 1888 she was recorded as the first female missionary of the AME (African Methodist Episcopal) Church.

In 1880, Sarah visited her family in Liberia. Her interest in helping people and pouring into their lives was genuine and strong, and she was described then as a missionary, church leader, and social worker. She returned to the United States and was involved in the ministry of the Charles Street AME Church. In 1888, she went to the Magbelle mission in Sierra Leone, where she established the Sarah Gorham Mission School, a place of both Bible teaching and industrial training. In July 1894, Sarah was infected with malaria. She was bedridden and passed away in one month.

Sarah was buried at Kissy Road Cemetery in Freetown, Sierra Leone.