Dr. William Leslie was a contented Canadian pharmacist until 1888 when he met Jesus Christ, and his life was changed forever. He trained to become a medical missionary, and in 1893 he traveled to Congo. He served for two years until he became deathly ill. Thankfully, Clara Hill was there to nurse him back to health, and eventually she became his wife.
In 1912 the Leslies pioneered a new mission station, clearing a leopard-infested jungle along the Kwilu River at Vanga. They provided medical care and preached the gospel to the local Yansi tribesmen, and also made evangelistic forays into the jungles to reach other groups. After 17 years of difficult work, they were driven out by local tribal leaders.
Disappointed and discouraged, Dr. and Mrs. Leslie thought their labor had been in vain. William died nine years after returning to the United States.
Almost 100 years later, in 2010, another missionary group went into this territory to study how to reach what they assumed were the unreached Yansi people. What they uncovered was an astounding testimony to the labors of the Leslies, the love of Jesus Christ and the power of His Word.
They discovered not just a church, but a series of reproducing churches scattered across the jungle. There was a stone “cathedral” that could seat 1,000 people, but it had grown too small for all the believers. So the people decided to start church-planting movements in the surrounding areas. Each of the eight churches the mission group visited had their own choirs, wrote their own songs, and would all come together to have “sing-offs.” Since the Bible was not available in the language of the Yansi, those who led out in worship spoke French. The work among the Yansi continues to grow.
Frontier mission service is a work of faith. It is a matter of obedience to the command of Jesus to take the everlasting gospel to every nation, kindred, tongue and people. Those who go in faith trust that God will bring forth a harvest in His time.
Imagine the joy that Dr. and Mrs. Leslie will experience at the resurrection when they meet the thousands of precious people harvested from the seeds they planted.
We invite you to share this joy by becoming a frontier missionary among the unreached. Only God knows when you will see the harvest, but He has promised that His Word will not return unto Him void. Share the joy!