This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Affiliate, I do earn from qualifying purchases.

I have had the opportunity to read numerous books on the lives of missionaries. Although I find the life of a missionary fascinating, I know that it is something I have never felt called to do. In fact, a mission trip to Africa is so far from God’s calling on my life. However, I do feel called to be a missionary for Christ in all of my interactions, each and every day. But my latest read took me quite far from my everyday life. I delved into the lives of Darrell & Louse Champlin in Venturing with God in Congo by Conjurske Publications.

For many, a mission trip to Africa seems exciting, but for Darrell Champlin and his wife, Louise, the Congo was a long-term trip that was only cut short by the Simba revolution.

Before giving a new book to my children to read, I usually read it myself. I want to know the content before passing it on.

Venturing with God in Congo by Darrell Champlin book

Venturing With God In Congo Overview

First, this missionary story is not your traditional, “we arrived, we met the native people, and we converted them.” However, it is a collection of short stories. These stories occurred while Darrell and Louise Champlin were missionaries in the Congo during the 1950s and 60s.

Louise’s family actually were missionaries to the Congo. Louise arrived in the Congo at age 5 and was there until she was reading for Bible college. It was in college that she met her husband, and they then prepared to return to the country where Louise grew up.

The Champlin’s arrive in 1954 and stay until 1960 when they return to the states on furlough. They return in 1962 but are relocated to Suriname, South Africa during the Simba revolution.

Back cover of book about long-term missions trip to africa

Overview of the Book

This book has a beautiful cover, and interesting illustrations including a timeline of the Champlin’s life until 1965. It also includes a short pronunciation guide for Lingala which is a language spoken in the Congo. 

This book was published in 2017 by Louise Champlin, however, most of the book was previously written by her husband. In fact, this isn’t your traditional mission trip to Africa story. Instead tells a series of short stories about life in the Congo and the hardships, challenges, and people that the Champlin’s encountered.

While Darrell and Louise’s focus was leading others to Christ, the area that they are living is full of witch doctors, cultural superstitions, and rites of passage. The Champlin’s are not only fighting idols and customs, but also wild animals and snakes. 

The life of a missionary is hard, but it is also rewarding and you get glimpses of that and their utmost devotion to the Gospel of Christ. Furthermore, it highlights their determination despite everything that goes on around them. Not illness, harsh living conditions, or threats of violence will deter them from their calling.

Life in Congo

Besides learning about the Champlin family’s missionary work, you learn a great deal about the African people, politics, and jungle life. This is actually quite fascinating. The life of the people living in Congo is so hard to believe. They are a people stuck back in time with a culture you can’t relate to. Darrell refers to the people as “jungle rats”. While reading, you see why.

The book includes a map and pictures which are helpful. You can see where they are located in Congo, and the pictures bring it all to life even more.

Quality of the Book

This book is hardcover with wonderful pages and binding. Furthermore, in the center of the book are glossy pages with photos of the Champlin’s. 

I do wish there were photos included in each chapter.

women reading Venturing with God in Congo Missions Trip to Africa

My Recommendation regarding this Book

While I read this book myself, I would not have my children read it. It is definitely too “violent” for my 15-year-old autistic son. Furthermore, he would not understand something that occurred well before he was born and in a different culture. I did have my 17-year-old son read the chapter entitled “Becoming a Man” which details the bizarre rite of passage for the Nkanga Society. 

While much of the book discusses short, unconnected stories, it does give a good overview of life in the Congo for missionaries 60-70 years ago. It is hard to put yourself in a different time and place and know how you would react. This book, or chapters of this book, could be used to give your children a glimpse of a long-term mission trip to Africa. This is by people who grew up in a very different world than your children have experienced. 

Additionally, there are chapters that give you insight into customs and cultures that seem so bizarre. Imagine talking about killing an elephant today. However, in the setting of the book, the elephant has gone rogue and is terrorizing villages. Something needs to be done, and readers will learn much of a culture that needs to be proactive to save lives. 

VISIT the Crew Blog (via the big banner below) to read more reviews for Venturing with God in Congo about a long-term mission trip to Africa.

Venturing with God in Congo {Conjurske Publications Reviews}

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top