by Daniel Henry, correspondent
Amputee. Refugee. Malnourished. Poor. These are a few of the labels put on Ansumana Bangura as he was growing up. Bangura was a Muslim child in Kamakwie, Sierra Leone when the country’s decade-long civil war started. When he was about 12 years old, rebels came to his town to kill his father, but upon their failure to do so, they pinned Bangura down and cut off his arm instead. After this, Bangura’s family fled across the border to the refugee camps in Guinea.
as part of the Washington Mandela Fellowship for Young African Leaders. He was one of 1,000 chosen from 42,000 applicants for six weeks of leadership training in forty universities across the United States and a summit with the president in Washington, D.C. Not only did he attend, but he was also chosen to give the opening address.
Today, Bangura is serving as a Christian missionary with Word Made Flesh in Sierra Leone’s biggest slum. He serves as the field’s administrator, oversees the tutoring program for about 38 children from the community, and teaches worship songs in English and several local tribal languages and styles.
An accomplished speaker and gifted musician, Bangura will be combining testimonies and songs during a Wednesday afternoon session at Missions Conference. He will share the history of how God is using black people to build the church in Sierra Leone, from Ash Carter’s leading the Black Pioneers in worship back in 1792 all the way up to Alafia Cole’s leading the Lighthouse youth in worship today.
Tomorrow night, Moody students will have the opportunity to hear about the work of God in Bangura’s life, from his war scarred childhood to his work building the kingdom of heaven among Muslims in the slums of Sierra Leone.
Later this month, Bangura plans to head back to Sierra Leone. While he’s been in the United States, the slum he serves was hit by severe floods. Some homes and property were damaged, others washed away entirely; a few people even lost their lives. Bangura hopes that by sharing his story in this disaster struck community, many Muslims will turn and give glory to Christ.