A first glimmer of hope has emerged in the mysterious case of Sid Barnes, a London-born missionary to West Africa, who has not been heard from since mid-March.
Daniel Abugah, our ANS Correspondent in Ghana, has been investigaing the case for us and now says that he believes that Sid Barnes may still be alive.
Barnes, a Calvary Chapel missionary, had not been heard from since he was due to arrive in Accra, Ghana’s capital city, on a British Airways flight from London, on Thursday, March 18th, 2010.
A close friend recently told the ASSIST News Service (ANS), “We are deeply concerned for Sid’s safety. He had flown from Los Angeles to London, Heathrow, on March 15, 2010, and stayed at a local Heathrow hotel for two nights (March 16/17, 2010), and then was supposed to fly onto in Accra on March 18.
“However, when a couple of colleagues went to the Accra airport to meet him, they said they didn’t see him and called a pastor in Glendale, California, to report that they couldn’t find him there.”
So we asked our Ghana correspondent, Daniel Abugah, to investigate the case for us and see what he could discover and he has sent a message that may indicate the Barnes is still alive.
In his message, Abugah said, “About missionary Barnes. I have checked with the airport immigration and they have confirmed that he, with the full name of ‘Sidney Thomas Barnes’, did arrive in the country on the said date.
“I have since been sending announcement to churches and Christian ministries in town to see if they have any information about him.
“I shall travel to Koforidua, which is mentioned in your story, and if no progress after that I will place some copy in the newspapers, while/or possibly work through the police.”
Abugah concluded by saying, “Let’s keep praying, I have the feeling that he will be found unhurt. Till then, may God preserve us!”
Sid Barnes moved to the United States in the 1970s and became a Christian while running a business in Santa Ana, California. He then began attending nearby Calvary Chapel of Costa Mesa (CCCM) in early 1977 and later he took the first pastoral training classes at this church pastored by Chuck Smith.
A door opened for him to go to the Pacific Northwest to a Calvary where he helped to start a single’s fellowship and then in 1984 he returned to his native London to help start a church in the “red light” district of Britain’s capital city.
In 1989, while back at CCCM, he went to Nigeria to help start Calvary Chapels there and he had been writing books on spiritual warfare and prayer.
Sid Barnes initially moved to Ghana in 1998 where he started the Crossroads Christian Mission Inc., in Koforidua, which is about an hour by road from Accra, and is the capital of the Eastern Region of Ghana, with a population of 87,315 (2000 census).
Soon he was busy ministering as a “pastor to pastors” and also as a Bible teacher. He also was involved in a secretarial school in the city.
He had begun working as a missionary in various West African nations in 1989. He started Crossroads Christian Mission in 2002, and it was in 2004 when it was finally registered and incorporated. The areas of his ministry, he said, were church planting, and evangelism in rural areas and, as he explained, “These are where the centers of occult rule, in the tribal and traditional areas and they reach into the cities with their influence.”
In his Calvary Chapel of Costa Mesa missionary profile, Barnes said, “Another way of church planting is through Christian schools with the church attached. We have a Christian vocational school and are hoping to shortly build our first permanent church with a pre-school on a plot we have. We then want to purchase land close by to later build a primary and JSS schools in a complex.
“We want to later start a Bible school to train the local people to go and plant churches with our help and follow up.
“As the Lord leads we want to seek Him for larger cities to plant central churches to reach out to the surrounding areas with the gospel.”
He described his personal ministry as “teaching/preaching, healing, deliverance and fighting the occult.”
Barnes, a British citizen, had returned to Southern California for a period last year and I last saw him in early January of this year at the Calvary Chapel “Meet the Missionaries” day at the church.
If you have any information on the whereabouts of Sid Barnes, please e-mail me (Dan Wooding) urgently at email@example.com
Note: If you would like to listen to an encore interview I did with Sid Barnes that was re-broadcast last Sunday on KWVE 107.9 FM in Southern California, just go http://www.assist-ministries.com/FrontPageRadio/FPR06.20.10.SidBarnesMono.mp3
Dan Wooding, Assist News Service