New FICMI Director For Africa

Monday, 18 November 2013

We are delighted to announce the appointment of Howard Ostendorff as our Africa Director.

After 38 years with Campus Crusade for Christ and having served at FamilyLife, Howard and Aileen Ostendorff became field staff of Freedom in Christ USA in 2010 where Howard is currently Regional Director, South Central U.S.

They know Africa very well indeed. They ministered in Kenya from 1980 to 1988 and helped start - and taught at - the Nairobi International School of Theology, Africa's first evangelical master's level English speaking seminary. They served in Kenya again from 1991 to 1999.

Earlier this year they were excited to be able to return to Kenya to run a Freedom In Christ conference and are pictured presenting a certificate to James Awanje (right) at the conclusion of the conference.

On their return to the USA they stopped off in the UK to visit one of their children and family and also took the opportunity to visit Steve and Zoe Goss. Steve says, "I told them that we were asking God to provide a Director for Africa and asked them about their plans for the longer term. Aileen said firmly 'Spending time with our grandchildren!' I asked them nevertheless to pray about the possibility of taking 3 to 5 years to help establish FIC across the continent and see African leaders raised up and equipped."

They returned to the States and prayed it over. The outcome was that they immediately felt a strong call - confirmed through a period of prayer and consultation - that God was calling them to return to Africa with Freedom In Christ Ministries. And the grandchildren? Well, that's been a tough decision but they are trusting that God knows what is best for them and the family.

So Howard and Aileen are now setting things in motion for the sale of their home and making plans to move to Kenya next year. Their role will be to support our African representatives, identify potential new representatives and, ultimately, to find their successors. Howard says, "Aileen and I are so excited to return to Africa and to be a part of the international development of Freedom in Christ. We are absolutely convinced that the truths and methods we teach are exactly what the Church in Africa needs today. Not only is it foundational for Christian growth but it deals directly with the confusing messages that Christians hear. As we move to Kenya in September 2014, we will miss the wonderful U.S. FIC family but we are also excited to work with Steve and Zoe Goss and the International leadership team and the Africa FIC leaders that are already in place. Our realization that the Lord would have us move to Africa at this point in our lives is exciting. Aileen says she feels ten years younger!"