The Land and the
The Republic of Chad is a large, land-locked country in the center of the African continent. Independent since 1960, the Chad was formerly the most northern part of French Equatorial Africa. The population of the Chad is divided into 52 percent Arab in the north and 48 percent black in the south.
The north is predominately Muslim. The southern part of Chad is divided into over 800 different tribes. All these tribes are animistic but vary greatly in the seriousness with which they hold to their animistic beliefs. Some tribes have resisted evangelization, while other tribes have accepted the gospel message. Large segments are at least nominally Christian.
Past and Current
Baptist Mid-Missions’ work in the Chad was started by Paul Metzler in 1925. The work is located in the southeastern region of the country and consists of five stations. In 1973, the Chadian church took a strong stand against government-forced tribal initiation rites. At that time, there were hundreds of churches. The believers were severely persecuted, and 13 of our senior Chadian pastors were martyred. Baptist churches were closed, and Baptist Mid-Missions missionaries were expelled. The Chad field remained closed to missionaries until 1975. Within three weeks of military overthrow of the former government, the Baptist churches were reopened. Only a few of the former missionaries returned to the Chad—most had taken on ministries in other BMM fields.
There is much work being done in translating the Bible into eight different languages. Chadian translators, with the help of biannual visits by Bibles International, have completed six New Testaments that are in use on the field. Bible theological schools are training leaders for the Chadian churches. The Lord blessed a medical evangelism program. Koumra Medical Center has trained many national doctors, nurses, and medical workers and is now run by nationals.
1. An increased vision by our local churches for unevangelized areas to the north and east of our present works, including the need for outreach to Muslims.
2. Continued expansion of the translation work.
3. Expansion of local-church ministries to include adult Sunday Schools.
4. Spiritual maturity in the face of increasing governmental and theological pressures in all aspects of the ministry.
5. The development of a field-wide program to strengthen Christian leadership in our local churches.
Church planters, Bible school and theological instructors, and Bible translators are needed to continue the development of existing ministries and reach into areas that currently lack Bibles in their heart languages or lack Bible-preaching churches.