"To reach 100 million souls for Christ as fast as we can and create disciples!" – Upward Church.
This past year was full of HARVEST as we concluded 2022 with nearly 930,000 salvations! Your generous giving, the dedication of local and international pastors, and the steadfastness of those on the ground in Africa and Pakistan made these results possible. That gives us a total of 2,334,808 LIFETIME SALVATIONS!
We had two international teams dedicated to reaching the lost in their nations, equipped with fantastic staff that followed up with each salvation to ensure that Upward Church and Wifi Jesus were planting good fruit! From large crusades of 300,000 in the center of South Asia to smaller gatherings of 300 deep in the jungles of Africa, we introduced the name of Jesus. Using the television platforms in Asia and the radio waves of Africa, we proclaimed God's goodness. Knocking door-to-door and marching village to village, we reached souls!
Our team's passion is to ensure that those who hear the Gospel and accept Jesus are equipped to grow into a deeper relationship with God. That is why most of our donations go toward our efforts in following up with those who attend our crusades. As a result, we are able to provide them with resources in their native tongue, such as Last-Minute God and Born for the Extraordinary by Pastor Craig Walker, in addition to Bibles and local leadership support. These books have been translated into over 15 languages! Each of these tools works in different ways according to the customs and culture of each nation. Last-Minute God is a book of hope that has proven to spark and produce testimonies for those who are on the brink of giving up and cannot move forward without a miracle. It shows Biblical examples of how God has shown up in that last hour while encouraging those to hold on a little longer. This book speaks specifically to those in South Asia as they read and relate to many of those stories. Born for the Extraordinary has resonated with hundreds of thousands in Africa. Its message pierces the heart of those who feel unloved and irrelevant. It shares the news that they were born for such a time as this and emphasizes that God does not make mistakes. Many Africans who live deep in the jungles, survivors of the Rwandan genocide, and African university students have found new life in the promise that God created each life for a purpose. We feel that by getting one of these books into every hand, that desires a deeper relationship with Christ, we can cultivate that uncertain heart and let God guide them into His purpose for their life. Our team on the ground is disciplining a new generation with one book, one conversation, and one prayer at a time!
Since supporting the launch of King Television in Pakistan, Upward Church has continued to disciple those throughout South Asia by providing weekly ministry content. Through sharing our sermons and providing separate live content, we are a steady presence of God's love and Biblical teaching to those who cannot physically attend a church in these areas. As of December 2022, King Television Programming is available to 106 nations by satellite.
In Africa, we focus our discipleship efforts on the radio waves because far too many in the deepest parts of the jungle do not have access to television, electricity, or stable roads to reach a church building. In these areas, we rely on radio programs to introduce Jesus to those who have never heard the Gospel message. We have a team on the ground who physically deliver cell phones to villages, enabling them to call the radio station to receive prayer, share a testimony, or accept Jesus into their lives. Bishop Ricky Sinclair, from Miracle Place Church in Louisiana, and Pastor Ron Thornton, in Arkansas, lead the charge for Wifi Jesus. They preach in Uganda, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and surrounding nations four times a week. Their teachings spread the Gospel message and result in an average of 19,000 salvations a month.
In Africa, we jumped off 2022 in the nation of Tanzania! Bishop William Idd, Pastor Noah Kamanzi, and their teams sought victory for Jesus near Lake Victoria in the Mwanza regions of Sengerema and Geita. With three strategic crusades over three months, 35,389 souls accepted Christ. Many denounced witchcraft and hundreds of miraculous healings were recorded. A total of 136 churches have been planted, and Tanzania is now on fire for Jesus, reporting a weekly Upward Church attendance of roughly 9,500. One generous donor specifically gave $1,600 to supply Bishop Idd with a motorbike so he could travel to the planted churches deep in the villages of Tanzania.
We were then introduced to the Uganda University Fellowship initiative that quickly spread to Rwanda. Once some university students got ahold of Born for the Extraordinary by Craig Walker, they were compelled to take this message to their peers. This book contains a life-changing perspective that has awakened a sleeping giant! Motivated and determined, the university students proposed a plan to reach into eleven universities to establish Upward Church fellowships that would reach out into their community to spread the love of Jesus. The universities even offered to print these books for Upward Church at a discount. At $1.50 per book, we have reached tens of thousands of students and their families. The distribution of these books and the discipleship of the message resulted in two University Fellowship Crusades this year, taking place in Uganda and flowing into Rwanda. Close to 15,000 books were provided for these students, allowing the Gospel to inspire thousands of families. On average, 2,000 students regularly attend services provided by Upward Church each week. These students have BOLD plans to take the message to KIU Muslim University in 2023.
This year, 48 University Fellowships have been established.
We rounded out the year with two crusades in the Democratic Republic of Congo with Pastor John Kishibisha, Pastor Noah Kamanzi, and their teams. This nation is coming off a season of war, and many of the territories are still very hostile. While we were able to conduct the first crusade in the Bukavu region of the DRC, our last effort moved into an Uganda border town in the region of Bwera. This allowed us to share the Gospel in a safe environment for both our team and those who traveled from the DRC. This message was broadcast live to include those who could not travel the dangerous roads. We impacted this nation with over 15,000 salvations and provided 12,300 books to continue the discipleship of the Democratic Republic of Congo. Upon conclusion of these crusades, Bishop John has plans to plant an additional 37 churches in 37 Congolese villages throughout 2023.
Pastor Craig conducted a handful of pastor's conferences, affirmations, and leadership events in between these scheduled gatherings throughout Africa. In Uganda, he encouraged the women of Upward Church Kampala to continue their mission to reach into the community and support those women who have been beaten, addicted, and forced into prostitution. Pastor Noah's wife, Dianah Kamanzi, leads this initiative as she instills hope in women through her 'Ladies of Hope' ministry. Pastor Craig affirmed 600 pastors in Uganda and Zambia while equipping them with 4,100 books to begin their ministries throughout their nation. He conducts monthly meetings with the Upward Church Ministry team to encourage and disciple further efforts.
Upward Church has actively brought the message of Jesus to the 11 African nations of Uganda, Tanzania, the Democratic Republic of Congo, South Sudan, Burundi, Rwanda, Kenya, Zambia, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Namibia, and Malawi while receiving weekly Sunday reports from nine of those nations. As a result, we see an average of 60,000 natives in Sunday attendance across Africa with a total of 384,693 salvations in 2022. We have established a total of 541 Upward Churches across Africa. Let's see how God plans to utilize our willingness in 2023!
While reporting is a little more protected in South Asia due to cultural dangers, we are excited to share that 544,268 souls accepted Christ this year. These salvations were spread out among four giant crusades within Pakistan and the border of India. Our amazing team in this region has perfected the art of large gatherings in an unbelievably efficient manner. Their landscape and experience allow for events of up to 300,000 in attendance. Then, their unique system for following up allows each salvation and miracle to be reported in the safest way possible. In addition, regular Pastor's Conferences are conducted to ensure that each of our 52,763 home churches are teaching sound doctrine that aligns with God's Word.
The efforts of Upward Church and Wifi Jesus could not have happened without any single one of YOU! From those on the front lines to those serving in Kid's church, this victory for Jesus was made possible because of your generosity and obedience. Upward Church's four campuses had a total attendance of 66,398 this year. We even saw 599 come to Christ in the USA! Without that attendance, without those volunteers, without those prayers…NONE of this would be possible! Without the mission donations of over $378,000 this year alone, our hands would have been tied, BUT GOD! Your vision for the mission, obedience to where the Lord has placed you, and dedication to prayer and fasting make a difference. You are enabling Upward Church to reach the low-hanging fruit. You will be reaping your reward in heaven one day as you are greeted by MILLIONS whom your sacrifice has impacted. Thank you deeply from the Upward Church and Wifi Jesus team!