Prayer and Persecution
GUINEA | August 15
Maimouna Bangoura, 29
When the Seventh-day Adventist showed up, my husband and I spoke with him for a few minutes on the front porch of our house in Conakry, Guinea.
But then he handed me a pamphlet, and I saw the word “Jesus” in small letters in the corner. Without even touching the pamphlet, I told him to give it to my husband, Alpha.
The pamphlet was in French, which Alpha doesn’t read, and he thrust it into my hands.
“Read this to me,” he said.
I threw it to the ground.
“I’m not a Christian!” I said. “I can’t touch something like this.”
I opened the door and went indoors. I didn’t want to hear about Christianity. Moreover, it was time for my evening prayers.
But I couldn’t pray. I was so upset that my mind couldn’t focus. I could hear the Adventist visitor talking with my husband on the porch. He asked Alpha if he had any prayer requests.
“I need work,” said Alpha, an electrician by training. “Also, when I earn money, it goes too fast. And my wife is having a difficult pregnancy. Please pray for her.”
Hearing those words, I marched outside and told the Adventist something that even my husband didn’t know. During my last visit to the hospital, the physician had told me that my baby was no longer alive. The baby was in me but dead.
My husband was shocked at the news.
“Please pray for me,” I asked the Adventist.
He prayed, “If the baby is to come, please Lord, give her the baby. But if not, Your will be done.”
When he finished, he picked up the pamphlet from the porch and wrote his name, Tranqulle Fassinadouno, and cell phone number on it. Handing it to Alpha, he said, kindly, “Maybe your wife will hold onto this and even read it to you one day.”
As soon as he left, I tore up the pamphlet and threw it away. I liked his prayer, but I didn’t want any part of his Christianity.
That night, I slept well for the first time in months. The pain and bleeding subsided. When I went to the hospital, I learned that the physician had made a mistake. I never had been pregnant.
Then my young son Anthony fell ill. I bought him medicine at the hospital, but nothing helped. I remembered how my illness had gone away after Tranqulle prayed.
“Why did I throw away the pamphlet with his phone number?” I berated myself.
The next day, I was thinking about the phone number when I heard a knock on the door. It was Tranqulle.
“I’m so glad that you’re here!” I cried. “I was just wishing that I had your phone number. Please pray for my sick son.”
Tranqulle prayed, and my son recovered that same afternoon.
Alpha and I were amazed, but I still didn’t want to go to church. However, I kept remembering Tranqulle’s prayers, so I decided to go to church after a month. I was deeply touched by the sermon and resolved to attend every Sabbath.
Alpha, however, only went for two Sabbaths. He stopped going when friends warned him that he would lose his mind. Alpha also didn’t want me to attend, but I went without telling him. After a while, he noticed that I was leaving the house every Sabbath, and friends told him that they had seen me enter the church.
Alpha started beating me. Once he beat me so badly that I had to go to the hospital. But I kept going to church, I learned in Sabbath School how to live better. Tranqulle, who I learned is a Global Mission pioneer, gave me Bible studies. I resolved to become a Christian when we read about the seventh-day Sabbath in the Ten Commandments.
Alpha still beats me. Every time I open my mouth to talk, he slaps me and refuses to speak with me. We no longer share the same bed, and he refuses to support our sons. I pray for him every day.
One of my favorite Bible verses is John 14:1, where Jesus says, “Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me.”
Despite the persecution, I have peace of mind because I have Christ. Could you please pray for me? With the Lord, victory is on our side. My husband will one day become a Christian.
Part of this quarter’s Thirteenth Sabbath Offering will help construct Kobaya Academy, a K-12 school where Maimouna’s sons and other children can study in Conakry, Guinea. Thank you for remembering Maimouna and the Adventist work in Guinea in your prayers.
By Maimouna Bangoura as told to Andrew McChesney
S t o r y T i p s
Ask a woman to share this first-person account.
Pronounce Maimouna as: MY-moon-a.
Pronounce Tranqulle as: tran-KEEL.
Read Tranqulle’s side of the story next week.
Watch Maimouna on YouTube: bit.ly/Maimouna-Bangoura.
Download photos on Facebook (bit.ly/fb-mq) or ADAMS databank (bit.ly/prayer-and-persecution).
Download photos of Thirteenth Sabbath projects: bit.ly/WAD-2020.
The work in Guinea began in 1987, when a lay couple from Europe quietly witnessed to their faith. In April 1992, the first war refugees from Liberia arrived in Guinea, including a number of Seventh-day Adventists and a licensed pastor, W. Oloysius, who soon began witnessing for their faith.