[Photo Credit: Training at NOVO TEMPO]
“We must not hide the truth in the corners of the earth. It must be made known; it must shine in our large cities. Christ in His labors took His position by the lakeside and in the great thoroughfares of travel where He could meet people from all parts of the world.” Testimonies for the Church, vol.7, pág. 36.
Guinea-Bissau is a small coastal country in West Africa with a population of approximately one million and eight hundred thousand inhabitants. This population is divided between the cities of the continent and an insular part. On the islands, few people have access to education, and health is precarious, since the resources that go there are scarce. The message of hope is further from these people, but we know that the preaching of the Gospel will reach all race, language, tribe and nation with the help of the media.
With the arrival of the Novo Tempo Bissau Radio Station, this reality may change in the country, especially in the islands. With quality content in the area of physical, mental and spiritual health Guineans will enter in a new era. A new hope will arise in their hearts bringing a good quality of life. The first broadcast took place on January 19, with the song of our Brazilian brothers “Arrais”, followed by the recording of the sermon by Pastor Alejandro Bullón.
Station was held at the Betel Central Adventist Church, with the special participation of Pastor Irineo Koch, the Communication Director of the West-Central Africa Division and Pastor Guy Roger, President of the Union Mission West of the Sahel. The Seventh-Day Adventist Church was in celebration, due to years waiting for the Radio Station, after many vigils and fasts the dream comes true.
This dream began in 1996 with Pastor Ricardo Orsucci, President of the Guinea-Bissau Mission at the time, who obtained funds for the recording of programs that were broadcast by the National Broadcasting Radio Station (owned by the Government) in the period of civil war, in the voice of Pastor Manuel Antônio Sigá. In 2001, Pastor Davi Tavares, a Brazilian missionary, obtained the license from the Government and the frequency 92.5 FM was granted to Novo Tempo Radio Station. He also got some equipments, but the transmitter was stolen and the realization of the dream was once again postponed. The current president of the Guinea-Bissau Mission, Pastor Gaspar Gomes, in 2013, together with Pastor Irineo Koch, began to idealize the dream once again. There were many difficulties for seeking resources and negotiation with the government, but by the glory and honor of Gog the dream becomes a reality, says Gaspar.
The Novo Tempo Bissau Radio Station is in its experimental phase by the assistance of the Adventist World Radio (AWR), which has granted funds for the purchase of the transmitter and the support of the Novo Tempo Brazil which has also granted the copy right and the use of their name and programs. As well as the Brazilian volunteers, mobilized by Pastor Wallyson Santos, who dedicated their time and personal resources so that the Radio was installed in the month of January. The late professor Flavio Rety and his son Arley Rety committed their energies and personal resources so that this dream was carried out as fast as possible. They believe that the Radio Station, as well as the television, that is the next step to Bissau, which the license was already given by the government, be some of the better paths for the preaching of the Gospel in this part of the world and that is worth to any sacrifice.
It is the first Broadcast Radio Station of the Western Sahel Mission Union, an achievement for the West-Central Africa Division and for the whole territory that will hit its sound waves. Pastor Irineo Koch provided hours of training for local members of the Seventh-Day Adventist Church in the area of communication, reinforcing the Radio's role in the society and techniques for locution. The acoustic insulation of the studios and the tower were constructed with resources coming from the local Union, as well as the support for this experimental phase.
The Western Sahel Union Mission continues to invest and support other countries, such as Cape Verde which is very close to conquering its local Radio Station and Senegal which is launching its Web Radio.
The Bissau Radio Station still has many challenges, the biggest of them is about energy. The country suffers from political instability and consequently the power cut is daily. The cost of energy is very high because it comes from generators. Therefore, the transmission schedule will be only three hours per day in the experimental phase.
The local administration has few resources to maintain the Radio and to finish the infrastructure. We count on your donations to install solar energy in the very near future. We need resources for the maintenance of the equipments, hiring of employees and the expansion of the Novo Tempo Radio Station to the Gabu city, so we will have national reach with the message of hope.
The Radio Station is currently run by the Brazilian volunteer Fabíola Ferreira Schliech, who from childhood dreamed of being a missionary and listening to Novo Tempo Radion Station in her home country. "The voice of hope must reach where my feet cannot touch, as far as the ends of the earth. God has His way so that His message reaches places where man cannot go, sometimes it takes more than two decades, but the time is from Him (God) and now it is a new time that begins in Guinea-Bissau," concludes Schliech.