WEEK OF PRAYER — December 4–11 kicks off the season of the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering for International Missions. This year’s offering has a national goal of $196 million. The offering supports the work of 3,550 International Mission Board missionaries around the world. One hundred percent of all funds given to LMCO goes straight to missionaries who are making disciples and multiplying churches among unreached people groups.
On another sunny day in northern Uganda, Hector steps into the river and turns to extend his hand to Oketa Robert, a new believer. Oketa Robert walks into the water, ready to take the next step of faith and be baptized. He is one of 34 believers baptized on this day in early spring. Each new follower of Jesus is a refugee from the Rhino Camp Refugee Settlement.
Hector Cabrera is a global missionary partner who works closely with International Mission Board teams in Uganda. He was sent by the missions agency, Cuba to the Nations. His primary work is discipleship and outreach in refugee camps filled with South Sudanese and Congolese. What he really wants to see is a healthy church planted in the camp.
Intentionally pointing to Christ
Hector, IMB missionaries and national partners are intentionally discipling new believers and looking for every opportunity to build relationships. Hector’s partnership multiplies the ministry in the area.
When Hector went to build a well in another camp, he took Joshua who attends a Bible study but is hesitant about baptism. While they worked on the well, they talked. Hector is intentionally pointing him to Christ.
Each week, Hector hosts a group of 13 young men in his own home. He feeds them homemade Cuban food and shares the gospel. He’s helping another house church planted by his friend Arich, a South Sudanese believer who was discipled by IMB missionaries a few years ago. Arich wants to reach youth in her village.
As Hector ministers in the camps, he’s never alone. Frankie Mosses is a South Sudanese refugee who disciples and baptizes alongside Hector in the camps.
Hector’s days are busy but never complete until he heads to Rhino Camp, usually with a soccer ball. He can count on being joined by a group of boys, eager to play. On a dirt field, he shares the hope of Christ with refugee kids who have seen more violence, destruction and hopelessness in their short lives than anyone should.
Soon the kids will play in a permanent sports facility, funded through the generosity of Southern Baptists. Hector is praying that outreach will grow and flourish through the new youth center.
Like these refugees, Hector is acquainted with political turmoil and unknowns at home. During a time of uncertainty in Cuba, he entrusted loved ones to the providence of God and to the care of his sending church, Montes des los Olives Baptist Church in Alamar, Cuba. They made his journey to Uganda possible.
Focused on one goal
He’s also familiar with not only living cross-culturally, but with sharing life with people from a third culture — the IMB missionaries.
While his ministry is multifaceted, his heart is focused on one goal — the lost in these camps being found in Christ.
Thank God for partnerships between IMB and cross-culture mission partners. Pray for Hector Cabrera and all global missionary partners to further the gospel among the nations. Ask God to spread His hope through the refugee center of Uganda.
EDITOR’S NOTE — This story was written and originally published by the International Mission Board.