Staff of the international media organization TWR joined churches, partners and other friends today in celebrating four decades of broadcasting from the ministry’s powerful transmitter complex in Swaziland.
Simultaneous commemorative events featuring songs of praise, speeches, testimonies and prayer were held Friday, Oct. 31, 2014, at the transmitter site near Manzini, Swaziland, and Croydon Baptist Church in Kempton Park, South Africa, where the headquarters of TWR Africa is located.
The TWR (also known as Trans World Radio) transmitter site went on the air Nov. 1, 1974, with programs offering practical information and daily advice along with sound biblical teaching to a large portion of Africa. Today the transmitter in Swaziland broadcasts in 34 languages.
"When TWR Swaziland signed on the air 40 years ago, who would have imagined the impact the station has had on the entire continent of Africa?” TWR president Lauren Libby said. “From the very beginning days, the ministry has been a miracle! The very sand that the station is constructed from was literally a gift from God. So as we celebrate 40 years of changed lives, we pause again and thank God for making this ‘big voice’ for Jesus in Africa possible."
TWR Africa, with headquarters outside Johannesburg, coordinates a busy radio schedule broadcast from Swaziland and featuring many internationally renowned broadcasters as well as regionally produced and focused programs such as Witness at the Water, Africa Challenge, Foundations for Farming and Tools for Wise Leadership. In addition to the Manzini broadcasts, TWR Africa reaches out to at least 40 nations through local AM and FM stations, satellite transmission and digital media.
A listener in a restricted African country wrote to producers of Women of Hope, “We are listening to your program in a group. As you know there is no church in our place, so we hear God’s word from your program only. We are encouraged and blessed by your program especially the spiritual part. Please pray for us … because if anyone knows that we are listening to a spiritual program, we will be in trouble.”
The Manzini operation comprises three 100-kilowatt transmitter, a 50-kilowatt transmitter and five antenna arrays. The staff was honored during a transmitter dedication ceremony in 1999 to hear the remarks of the Swaziland king, Mswati III Ngwenyama: “TWR’s broadcasts to Africa have helped to put Swaziland on the map of the world. Everywhere the listeners know that TWR broadcasts from Manzini/Swaziland.”
People wishing to know more about TWR Africa’s diverse media outreach or interested in learning how they can support the ministry should visit TWRAfrica.org.
Photo 1: A view of the TWR transmitter building in Swaziland across the bridge leading to it
Photo 2: TWR staff and friends gather at the transmitter site near Manzini on Oct. 31, 2014, to celebrate the 40th anniversary.