The Otara mall backs onto a huge carpark which is used every Saturday as a marketplace, which is well known and very popular. Just the other side of that carpark is a campus of the Manukau Institute of Technology (MIT); so during term-times there are large numbers of students who take time out over at the mall.
We now have a midweek evangelism team – there’s no shortage of people to preach the Gospel to, heal, pray & prophesy over, with the MIT students during the week & Otara Market on Saturday where lots of folk gather.
As we have reported before, this area is largely religious. Most folk tell us they are Christians. So we enjoy seeing the word of God destroy the doctrines of the devils (1 Tim 4:1). We also enjoy seeing healings and folk praising God for his miraculous power (Mat 5:16). Often however, language barriers prevent us from fully sharing their testimony. So we were blessed recently when a Samoan speaking disciple was approached by a Samoan lady – who told the disciple she had been prayed for 2 weeks earlier by another disciple from Otara and had been unable to testify well to a wonderful healing because she could not speak much English.
One disciple prayed for a young person whose leg was in a cast, and who was not putting her weight on the leg due to the severe pain. The pain went and the father suggested the child try walking without the crutch. The child walked and jumped pain-free, while all praised God.
We are enjoying a season of favour: For our first 18 months we were unable to find any suitable meeting places in Otara on Sundays: They were all booked out – all day. So, we have had Saturday church. Then, suddenly, MIT has two rooms available! So, we now have Sunday church. Praise God! We have favour to preach the Word in the mall area. Since we started we have kept close contact with the local Otara Business Association, explaining what we do, and even giving them a copy of our Gospel Force Contract (which all team members are bound by). We asked for a Permission Notice that shows we are approved in what we are doing. Recently, when we were renewing this Permission Notice we asked for approval to go there 24/7, in order that all incidental evangelism stints could be under the same understanding. The manager misunderstood and said “it might be easier on everybody if you only do every second day”. He was about to give us permission to be there ALL day AND night, every second day! Then we explained, we didn’t mean “all day”, we would probably only come for an hour at a time, but which hour could vary throughout the week. And that is what is now in our second Permission Notice, permission to evangelise (including open air preaching) any day / any time. Praise you Lord!
We have been favoured by Holy Ghost – filled visitors. Apostle Ryan and Rev Jac came to Auckland in August and ministered in both the Manurewa & Otara Churches. In September, Otara disciples were blessed as they fellowshipped with and ministered to two MCC Australia disciples who attended our Otara Bible Study night, whilst they were on holiday in NZ. In early October, two Ministers of the Gospel, from MCC Australia / MCC USA, came over to NZ and ministered at Rewa & Otara Churches before heading to Gisborne with two Otara disciples, where they all preached & ministered to and encouraged the Gisborne disciples.
Three on fire Gisborne disciples came on a Missions trip at the end of October, and ministered in the Auckland Churches. They arrived Friday afternoon & ministered in three meetings over the weekend. The three Gizzy Guys joined with Auckland disciples & went out evangelising in Manurewa & Otara. We all enjoyed a load of fun & fellowship together during the Missions trip of the GG’s. We are looking forward to seeing the fruit of their ministering & visit.
These visits have stirred greater enthusiasm to see NZ won for Jesus, no matter what the cost.
And we are enjoying favour by way of many blessings being personally experienced by the disciples at AHKM. One disciple who lost his job, had a new job within a very short time, without having to search at all. Several disciples are praising God for discipleship – having had years of “religious” background & now finding freedom in Christ as we are all submitting our lives totally to the Word of God. Two of our disciples have testified to renewed energy, and one has testified to the healing of poor circulation, and both are experiencing great joy in going out on streets.
Thank you for your interest in the work in Otara. If you are a disciple of Jesus then we exhort you to do the work of an evangelist (2 Tim 4:5) – that is why we are still here! If you are not a disciple of Jesus, checkout the other links on this page, particularly the “Become a Christian” link, and the “Give Us a Year” link which can you find under the “What we do/ Discipleship” links.
Reverend Tom & Pastor Barb Hockley, AHKC Otara