“Twenty seven years ago I ministered to the shanties that lived on the Ratmalana beach. One family received Christ and subsequently they shifted to Meegoda. I was following up on them and one day while I was travelling to Meegoda, I pleaded with the Lord to send a minister to that village as it was a predominantly Buddhist village and there was no Christian minister. But the Lord gave me a word from Isaiah chapter 6 and confirmed to me that he had chosen me for this task. So responding to His calling I left Ratmalana and started the pioneering ministry at Meegoda village” related pastor Tyron when we met him at the SSTS seminar held for Seethawaka pastors on October 8th – 10th.

NCEASL conducts a total of 6 Standing Strong through the Storm (SSTS) seminars each year for pastors from the various regions. SSTS provides training and guidance for Church leaders by offering them instruction and counsel to face crises. It also motivates the Body of Christ to press on in its discipleship efforts whilst preparing them for pressures and persecution that may arise.

The seminar gave us a lot of strength and encouragement to boldly face persecution. I too have faced persecution in 2003 after the death of a popular monk; the villagers burnt down and destroyed our main church building. Thereafter the villagers put up posters demanding that fundamentalists should leave the village. God took us through all these trials” explained pastor Tyron. “Today there is more than 120 people in my congregation. Meegoda had no church when I first went there. I am truly happy because from nothing God has brought so many of us together as a congregation”.

At the end of the 3 day SSTS seminar Pastor Tyron went back strengthened and encouraged to teach others – church leaders, believers and other pastors like himself who are serving in interior rural areas how to remain and stand strong when challenges arise.

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