Faith is contagious. This couldn’t be truer to the experience that occurred at Town Creek Baptist Church recently. Nine orphaned children from Kenya and four teenaged students from Aiken, SC were baptized in the same baptismal pool. How could this have happened? It all started with Pastor Tom Abungu of Nairobi, Kenya. Growing up in the slums of Kenya, Pastor Tom’s parents did the best they could to raise him in a difficult situation. Through the Good Samaritans Ministries, Tom was sponsored by an American family who actually gave him the opportunity to receive his education. While still in Kenya, Pastor Tom would eventually meet Jesus and become a Christian. He later completed his degree through Liberty University and knew that he needed to return home and make a difference in Kenya.
Pastor Tom began Connect with a Child in order to help the children in Kenya growing up in similar situations as he had. Since its inception, the program has supported over 1,000 children through school graduation programs, through sanitary donations, and an orphanage. Connect with a Child also drilled wells that allowed over 60,000 people to have access to clean drinking water. The program also runs an orphanage and the students in the orphanage make up the Hakuna Matata Choir.
The South Carolina Baptist Convention staff were meeting with 10 local pastors in Aiken to see how the staff could bring more value to helping their churches fulfill the Great Commission. By God’s providence, the Hakuna Matata Choir van pulled up as the meeting was starting. The children sang completely impromptu and unplanned for the gathered pastors. On hearing the children sing at the Advance Tour meeting in Aiken, Clint Smith of Town Creek Baptist Church asked the choir to sing the following Sunday at his church.
While the children’s choir was visiting, the students at Town Creek began talking with the singers. They began asking simple faith questions of the children and eventually asked if the children were baptized. When the children answered that several of them were waiting on the rainy season in Kenya to fill up baptismal pools, Pastor Clint Smith offered their baptismal pool if any of them wanted to be baptized the following week. Nine children from the Hakuna Matata choir were baptized, leading to two students from Town Creek feeling the Lord’s conviction to be baptized the following Sunday, with two more students asking to schedule baptisms for the following week. Praise God for Pastor Tom, for the children of Hakuna Matata choir of Kenya, and for their faithfulness that resulted in life change here in Aiken, SC.