Who chooses a mission field by picking the country officially listed as the poorest in the world? Heidi Baker did.
“God told me once, ‘I want you to come up to the lowest place,’ explains Baker, who co-founded Iris Global with her husband, Rolland, in 1980. The country they chose was Mozambique. They purposely put themselves in the most challenging situation they could find, believing that the most likely place to see revival was among the most unlikely.
God didn’t disappoint. Within days of the Bakers’ arrival in Mozambique, God gave them an orphanage that no one else wanted. It was neglected, dilapidated and filled with 80 orphans and untold numbers of demons. Within months, the children were saved, filled with the Holy Spirit and out on the streets leading other children to the same power-packed new life. Some had visions of heaven where they danced around the throne of God on the shoulders of angels.
That was just the beginning. When devastating floods ravaged the country, revival broke out and the Bakers planted literally thousands of churches and held remote “bush conferences” at dirt airstrips all over the country. Today Iris has networks of churches and church-based orphan care in all 10 provinces of Mozambique, and the work has expanded all over the world. In spite of exponential growth, Baker says her focus is still on “the one.”
“It is this combination of a powerful experience of the Holy Spirit,” says Ross Paterson, founder of Chinese Church Support Ministries, “and a taking of that to the lost and the least that so conforms to Acts 1:8 and is such a challenge to our generation.”