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When Alliance missionaries sailed for the Congo in 1884, they were hardly prepared for the life-threatening realities of overseas ministry. A Baptist missionary in Africa had written: “Cruelty, sin, and slavery seem to be as millstones around the necks of these poor people…brethren, come over and help us.” The call fell upon the hearts of five young men who had graduated from the C&MA’s newly formed Missionary Training Institute. Their objective: to establish the first overseas mission of The Christian and Missionary Alliance.

Scenes of darkness appalled the courageous men. Disembarking near the Congo River, the band of missionaries immediately met a wall of hostility from slave traders who hated and opposed them. Shortly after the team’s arrival, their leader, John Condit, fell victim to malaria. After his death, three of his colleagues sold their outfits to finance passage home. Only one man, Francis Gerrish, determined to carry on, working with the Baptists for three years. A second party went to the Congo in 1888 and successfully established the first Alliance mission station.

By 1928, the Alliance Church in the Belgian Congo (currently the Democratic Republic of the Congo) had become the largest and fastest growing Alliance church overseas. A strong national church remains there today. Alliance missionaries entered the neighboring Republic of the Congo (across the Congo River) in 1992. They came to help a fledgling church that had been planted by Alliance church members and missionaries from the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Gabon. Today, the young national church in the Republic of the Congo has 2,000 members. Scores of African believers are working with Alliance missionaries, committed to planting churches among unreached people.

Congo map

National Church

The Christian Alliance Church in Congo: 15 organized churches, 27 unorganized groups, 15 ordained ministers, 647 baptized members, and 2,000 inclusive members

Team Initiatives

  • Work with the national church to develop a church-planting movement among the Vili, who are along the Atlantic coast, and the Teke, who live on the plateau area north of Brazzaville.
  • Broaden the national church leadership base by empowering those who have been trained to train others for ministry. There is need for all believers to use their spiritual gifts in local church ministries.
  • Develop a Christian study center in Pointe Noire. One building has already been built and is being used by the Bible School. Funds are being raised to construct another building. Along with the Bible School, the center will coordinate Theological Education by Extension and discipleship ministries in the region.

International Workers in Congo

Congo North Team

Congo South Team

The Alliance at Work in Congo

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Demographics

Population
Population—3,039,126
Infant mortality rate—92.4/1,000
Life expectancy—49.0
Capital City
Brazzaville (1,169,900) pop.
Geography
Nearly the size of Montana, the Republic of the Congo (132,046 sq. mi.) is more than 60% covered with tropical rainforests and with grasslands and bush in the north.
Languages
French (official)
Lingala
Monokutuba
Kikongo
many dialects
Ethnicity/Race
Kongo—48%
Sangha—20%
M’Bochi—12%
Teke—17%
European (mostly French), other—3%
Economy
Per capita income—$800
Inflation—1.8%
Literacy rate—84%; (2003 est.)
Government/Political Climate
Republic. Republic of the Congo gained independence from France in 1960. A quarter century of experimentation with Marxism was abandoned in 1990, and a began in 1992. A 1997 civil war restored former Marxist President Sassou-Nguesso but ushered in ethnic unrest. Today, the country is seeking to rebuild from the years of civil war in the 1990’s.
Religion
Christian—50%
animist—48%
Muslim—2%

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Alliance ministry in Congo is primarily funded through the Great Commission Fund. Help fulfill Jesus’ Great Commission and make a gift to the GCF today.

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Congo North Team

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