Stalham Baptist Church gets new Pastoral Assistant
2017: A new Pastoral Assistant and Outreach Worker will be starting at Stalham Baptist Church at the beginning of May. Jeremiah tells his story, here:
My Name is Jeremiah Otieno Oluoch (Kenyan) and I’m married to Simone Otieno (German) and we have one daughter called Elsa Helena Otieno. Elsa will be one year old on the 2nd May 2017, one day after we start work at Stalham Baptist Church.
Simone comes from Southern Germany where the Forests are black (Black Forest), while I come from part of the world where we have plenty of sunshine and therefore most people are black! (Kenya). Elsa belongs to both worlds.
I am the third born in the family of six siblings (4 boy, 2 girls) and was born in a slum in Nairobi where I lived most of my early years. At the age of 13 years old, I lost my dad after a long illness. I struggled to deal with the pain of grief which developed into anger, bitterness and hatred towards God. One year later by God’s grace, I came to a living faith in Christ when I heard the gospel being preached clearly in a church service. The Lord helped me to cope with grief in such a way that it made it much easier dealing with grief when my mother died one year later.
Simone has been working in Kenya for four years now as a development worker running a project that works with girls in one of the largest slums in Africa, called Kibera, in Nairobi. We met in Nairobi, after a mutual friend introduced us to each other.
I got to know about Stalham Baptist Church (SBC) more than 5 years ago, during my two years’ service in Liverpool and Birmingham as an international volunteer with a mission agency called Careforce. By that time, my fellow volunteer and friend Sammie Chad was ending his time at SBC and so he invited me over for his farewell service. I really enjoyed my time in Stalham, and since then I have kept in touch with Pastor Ron and his family even after returning to Kenya.
Three years ago, I returned to the U.K. to train for Pastoral ministry at London Theological Seminary. During my time of training, I had the privilege of spending 7 weeks doing a summer placement at SBC and I really enjoyed the warmth and kindness of the church and the community at large.
When Simone visited the church, 9 months later, she also loved the people, and that’s why we were very excited when the leadership ask me whether I could be interested in the post of the Pastoral Assistant. Simone, Elsa and I are delighted and are looking forward to being part of the church community at SBC. We are excited about what God is going to do in and through us, as I’ll be serving alongside Rev. Ron Skivington as a Pastoral Assistant and Outreach Worker.
Our vision is to help build a diverse Church with Jesus at the centre and united by the common desire to make Him known and experienced through the work of the Holy Spirit.
This article first appeared in Stalham’s new community magazine: Community Scene.
The pictures of Jeremiah, Simone and Elsa are also by kind permission of Community Scene.
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