On Monday 2 May, a new GlobalRize national office was opened with a formal ceremony in Jos, Nigeria. Totally in line with the online character of our work, the ceremony was streamed live on Facebook.
‘The branch in Nigeria, from where we can cover Africa, could become more important than our office in the Netherlands,’ suggests Marten Visser in an interview with the Nederlands Dagblad (a Dutch daily newspaper).
Lucky Simon is the director of the Nigerian branch. There is also a co-worker and fifteen volunteers who are active. Marten Visser twittered about the opening:
“An official opening here always happens with the cutting of a cake. We can’t complain that the first deed of GlobalRize Nigeria was to slice up our logo.”
The cutting of the cake is a fixed part of every ceremony in Nigeria, which signifies that you do the work together.
The church in Africa is growing, in contrast to the situation in the Netherlands where the church is shrinking. Even though GlobalRize does missions via the internet, that doesn’t mean that a physical presence on a continent is not important. Our slogan ‘From screen to church’ still applies: the intention is that people will join a local church and become active members. An African who does an online course, can then be led by an African Christian who is closer to his own culture and context.
Visser talks about this in the same interview: ‘It is indeed possible to bring the Good News from your easy chair in the Netherlands and we are grateful for that. But sometimes it is difficult to understand someone from another culture. Therefore, we need local Christians involved. That is why we as GlobalRize want to develop into an international movement.’ There are also plans to set up national offices in India, the United States, and South Africa.
Photo 1: The cutting of the cake. From right to left: rev. Dachomo, pastor of a megachurch in Jos; Marten Visser; Lucky Simon, director GlobalRize Nigeria; Jan Turkenburg, volunteer at GlobalRize; Marinne Simon, wife of Lucky; and Iliya Chundusu, chairman GlobalRize Nigeria.
Photo 2: Marten Visser and Iliya Chundusu, chairman of GlobalRize Nigeria’s board, reveal GlobalRize’s logo on the office’s wall.
Foto’s: Daytime Photography