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Derek and Jane Waller - Madagascar

In 2006 Todd McGregor was appointed as an assistant bishop, tasked with forming a new diocese in Southern Madagascar. Bishop Todd is a passionate evangelist and under his leadership Toliara Diocese was established in 2013 and now has a cathedral and 80 churches (around 8,000 worshipping Anglicans). Our role is to do what we love doing most – discipling and encouraging the many young Christians.

Call 

To make disciples and encourage young Christians.

Role 

Derek will be the diocesan coordinator of disciple making. Jane will be exploring possible roles in adult education while also working alongside Derek.

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Derek will be working with local pastors and lay leaders to disciple Christians and grow the church. Madagascar is one of the world’s poorest countries and the south in particular is very poor, suffering from a chronic lack of rainfall. The diocese is larger than England and Wales put together and the roads are poor. Few people speak English, most speak Malagasy, so travel and language will be particular challenges. We plan to stay for three years, after which we hope to hand over to local Christians.

We worked with CMS in the 1980s in South Sudan. In the 23 years after we returned to the UK Derek was ordained and served in three parishes. Jane worked in adult education and was also a magistrate. But we never lost our passion for mission across cultures. When the opportunity came to return to South Sudan to be involved in theological education we believed that this was the call of God. Sadly we were only there for 18 months before civil war broke out.

How have we got from South Sudan to Madagascar? The short answer is through many tears and much prayer. In the months after leaving South Sudan we grieved for the friends we will not see and the work we will not complete. However, a chance meeting with Bishop Todd McGregor led to an invitation to the Diocese of Toliara. We accepted and are now excited about starting a new mission adventure in our 60s!

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