Southern Baptist workers introduce Kenyan family to the Great Physician

Baba Dogo slum in Nairobi

Fatuma* is raising her five children in a one-room metal house in the slum-of-slums of Nairobi, Kenya. Fatuma knows that despite the squalid living conditions, her children have something she never had as a child: love.

Boy in Nairobi's Dandora slums

A boy plays with a piece of wood in the Dandora slums of Nairobi, Kenya. There are reportedly 2.5 million slum dwellers in about 200 settlements in Nairobi.

After she was orphaned, Fatuma was sent to be raised by her aunt and uncle. They treated her like a servant and kept her home from school to clean. Her hunger to learn once resulted in a beating after she leafed through a cousin’s school book.

Prayers for healing

Recently she and her husband Abdi* were scared when their 14-year-old daughter Aalia* had a bleeding issue that wouldn’t stop.

One day Abdi was out in the neighborhood when foreigners walked up. Before Abdi knew it, he was sharing with total strangers that his daughter had a bleeding problem. The American man told him told him a story about Jesus, and Abdi invited them to visit his family.

Kibera slum

People amble around the Kibera slum in Nairobi, reportedly the largest urban slum in Africa. Population estimates range from a couple hundred thousand to a couple million people. All of Kibera’s residents live in extreme poverty, earning less than $1 per day.

The next day Fatuma welcomed her husband’s guests into their home. The visitors told another story about God. They said they weren’t trying to take advantage of Aalia’s illness to convert the family to Christianity.

“We’re here because we are followers of Jesus,” they said.

When they asked if they could pray to Jesus for healing, she agreed.

Within a week, Aalia’s bleeding completely stopped. Fatuma was overjoyed to give the report to the American woman when she visited them again.

Blessed book

Decades after the beating she received for her curiosity, Fatuma’s hands finally closed around a small book of her own — a New Testament in Arabic and Swahili.

This time no one will beat her. Fatuma opens the pages of her book and ponders what she is learning about Jesus. Something — or Someone — is drawing her.

Your gifts through the Cooperative Program and the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering® support Southern Baptists who are taking the hope of Jesus Christ to the people of Nairobi’s poorest areas, people such as Fatuma and Abdi. Thank you for giving.


Sub-Saharan Africa is home to two megacities (with a population of more than 10 million), with three more expected to emerge by 2030. Eleven of the 25 fastest growing cities in the world are in Sub-Saharan Africa. The fastest growing metropolises, such as Nairobi, Kenya, are expanding at rates of almost 4 percent per year.

In 1950, Sub-Saharan Africa had no cities with populations of more than 1 million. Today, it has over 40. The fastest growing metropolises, such as Nairobi, Kenya, are expanding at rates of almost 4 percent per year. That is almost twice as fast as Houston, one of America’s fastest-growing metropolises. Read about urbanization and the rapidly changing missions landscape in African cities.

Learn more about Sub-Saharan African Peoples, including Fast Facts about Sub-Saharan Africa. You can pray for the people of Africa now — find out how.

*Names changed

The Lottie Moon Christmas Offering® is a registered trademark of Woman’s Missionary Union.