Imprisoned witch doctor found new life in Christ

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Confiance was born into a family of witch doctors. Her grandmother was the official village witch doctor. When Confiance turned 13 years old, she was sent to live with her grandmother for training and service.

Before dying, Confiance’s grandmother transferred her powers to Confiance and gave her the traditional witch doctor outfit. These clothes symbolized her authority as the new respected witch doctor in the village. Confiance was honored to inherit this position and she went on to offer sacrifices and conduct occult rituals for money. She was also an infamous thief in the town known for stealing motorcycles, among other things. She was also feared for her supernatural powers.

Confiance was imprisoned four times for stealing and fighting. Her friends at the time told her there was no hope for her. They said, “God doesn’t love you and will never forgive you.” During her third time in prison, Confiance was in bed for three days with hypertension. Her heart was racing and she was struggling to breathe. She couldn’t eat or drink anything because her stomach was in so much pain. She wasn’t given any medical treatment.

When Jenya arrived, the other prisoners told her about a dying woman who needed urgent prayer. Jenya saw that Confiance was in a critical state.

Jenya prayed for her healing and told her, “God loves you and will forgive your sins”.

“No, not me,” Confiance replied.

Jenya told Confiance the story of the thief on the cross. “If Jesus forgave that man, He can forgive you too…Do you want God to forgive you of your sins?”

“Yes,” she said.

They prayed together, Confiance’s sins were washed away, she accepted the Lord, and her name was added to the Lamb’s Book of Life!

The next week when Jenya visited the prison, Confiance was beaming with joy and said, “Look at me! I am healed!”. The authorities saw such a radical change in her behavior, they released her early.

Nevertheless, Confiance had not been baptized or discipled. She did not go to church or have any Christian friends, mentors, or accountability. Upon release, Confiance sold the Bible Jenya gave her for a pack of cigarettes and went back to her old ways.

In one instance, she fought with a teenage boy and broke his arm. The boy’s family was furious, pressed charges, and refused to forgive her. While being chased by angry victims of various crimes, Confiance jumped from a wall and broke her leg. She was caught and went back to prison for the fourth time.  At this time, Jenya’s prison ministry was starting to teach using the five-part Walking With Jesus Film series from The JESUS Film Project.

As Jenya taught, Confiance asked questions about how to apply each of the lessons; and, her life continued to radically change. After the second lesson in the film series on restoration, Confiance called the father of the boy whose arm she had broken to ask for forgiveness. When he came to the women’s prison, she told him that she had become a Christian and was truly repentant for what she did. Confiance apologized that she had no money to repay him. The boy’s father was so moved by her change, he not only forgave her but gave her some money for food because the prison had no food.

After the final lesson about witchcraft in the Walking with Jesus series, Confiance went back into her cell, took the witch doctor outfit gifted to her by her grandmother and burned it and severed her ties with the occult.

Jenya taught in the women’s prison about baptism in water and baptism in the Holy Spirit. Confiance was one of 20 women who were baptized in water on that day (photo above). In her baptism, Confiance was suddenly baptized in the Holy Spirit and immediately started speaking in tongues. This is when her transformation started to accelerate and bear fruit.

People who knew Confiance before she was saved noticed the massive change in her. One woman saw Confiance in the market and said, “Nice sandals! Where did you steal those?”

“I don’t steal anymore,” Confiance replied. “I work for God and He provides.”

Before Confiance was saved people were afraid of her. Prison guards refused to take her to the hospital because they were sure that she would overpower them and escape. But now, the same guards respect her and assist her ministry efforts in the prisons. Thirty-three of Confiance’s best leaders are in the men’s prison where she has overseen the baptisms and discipleship of over 350 men. Even the director of the prisons said that he sees Jesus in her and wants to be baptized by her. Outside the prison system she has over 1,000 more disciples in almost 90 more DMM groups.

After Confiance’s discipleship movement was established in the women’s prison, the military chaplains were complaining that there was no work left for them to do. They said, “We come to preach the gospel and there is not even one person who hasn’t heard it yet. We come to baptize and everyone has already been baptized.”

Today, Confiance is laying down her life to train 120 leaders on Disciple Making Movements, preaching, showing the JESUS Film, baptizing new believers, and mentoring as rising leaders baptize and disciple new and rededicated believers.

Confiance was radically transformed. She now leads a movement which is growing virally and reaching people for Christ in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

 

To learn more about Jenya & Don Foster’s ministry, go here

Related: Answering the call to the last and least, ministering to Pygmies

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