the city outskirts. The building’s foundation and side walls are
up, but about $20,000 is needed to complete the project.”
Next Chris and Deb fellowshipped with Calvary Baptist
Church, the oldest fundamental Baptist church in Monrovia.
In 1962 Walter Smith (Baptist Mid-Missions) laid the foundation for the church when he started a Bible study in Clara
Town, a part of Monrovia, with a small group of Bassa believers.
(These were native Liberians, not transplanted freed American
slaves or their descendants.) Missionary Ray Dunn continued
the work Smith had begun, and Calvary Baptist Church was
planted, eventually putting down roots on 18th Street.
Today Calvary is pastored by Larque Vaye, who grew up
attending the church and served as a deacon, director of
evangelism, and assistant pastor before becoming senior pas-
tor 12 years ago. Calvary Baptist has had a part in planting
churches around Monrovia. Despite the challenges of 80 per-
cent unemployment, the church maintains an active ministry
schedule, says Chris. This includes a Sunday evening radio
broadcast, on which Chris’s morning sermon was aired.
Pastor Vaye took Chris and Deb to visit Calvary Baptist
Christian School, which has 800 students. Each student pays
$200 annual tuition. Pastor Vaye told the Hindals, “We need
to purchase apparatus for our science laboratory. The total
cost is estimated at $3,000. Would you pray that God will use
someone to provide this need?”
Calvary Baptist Church fellowships with the Independent
Baptist Fellowship Annual Conference in Monrovia. This
group of 27 churches is presently adopting a constitution to
organize itself as an association. After Chris met with the
leaders, explaining the IPFBM’s nature and purpose, they
expressed interest in applying for partnership.
A Hopeful Future
Liberia is slowly recovering from the devastation of the
past, and so are its independent Baptist churches. The formula
is simple: an emphasis on evangelism and church planting,
the formation of church associations, the support of schools
to educate Liberia’s future leaders. The churches are moving
forward, and they need a lot of prayer. To learn how you can
help and to be better informed for praying, visit the GARBC
International Ministries website: GARBCinternational.org.
The Ethnoreligionist Challenge
Republic of Liberia Population: 4.1 million
Sociologists use the term ethnoreligious to describe religious
ideas that are unique to a particular ethnic group (rather than
Many Liberians embrace a mystical syncretism of Protestant,
Catholic, Islam, and native West African Shaman beliefs.
The Liberian civil wars were marked by ritual killings, child
sacrifices to the Devil, and formal hexes on enemies. Joshua
Milton Blahyi declared war on Charles Taylor after claiming
he received a phone call from the Devil.