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A 76-year legacy of ministry in the Congo, memorialized.

By February 4, 2005

Congo–Kinshasa (MNN)–His nickname was ‘father’, but it was a title of respect among the Africans he served. ‘Baba Vi’, Sam Vinton Senior, of Grace Ministries International had a 76-year legacy in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

His son, Sam Vinton, Junior, wants to honor that work by building the ‘Baba Vi Memorial Hospital’. The name says it all. “My father was one of those men that went out as an evangelist, but completed his whole work by putting together so many pieces of a puzzle to complete a full-orbed work that continues in many ways and touches lives of so many people, and eventually brings them to wonder why this man is doing this, and that’s how he has been able to witness to so many people in that country.”

Vinton says they’re raising the money to get things rolling. “As soon as we can get the funding on this, it’ll be the matter of starting the project of getting supplies, because things have to be shipped in. Right now, that’s going to be one the big problems, because the roads are in very bad condition; they’re trying to fix those roads.”

The Congo is where the vision for GMI was born. Since then, the ministry has grown to the point where church leaders are trained in their Bible college, pastors’ school, and sixteen Bible institutes.

A large medical center was recently built in a Muslim area where the first church has been planted in an unreached people group.

There is one teacher training college, 27 high schools, and 130 grade schools are run by the national church. More than 400 churches have been planted in this country.

The work there has spread to ministry in Australia, Bolivia, Brazil, Costa Rica, Curacao, India, Philippines, Puerto Rico, Tanzania, United States, Uruguay and Zaire.

In three quarters of a century of change, GMI has not lost focus as an evangelical, Bible-believing mission with the purpose of bringing people to experience salvation in the Lord Jesus Christ and incorporating them into strong, self-sustaining churches.

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