And you shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free.”
Joshua Blahyi Ministries exists to give hope to the outcasts of Liberia, to share the gospel with people in Liberia’s worst ghettos, to bring peace where there’s violence, and to bring love where rejection is expected, thereby changing a country and advancing God’s kingdom.
Joshua was born September 30, 1971 into the Krahn tribe, in South Eastern Liberia. As a toddler Joshua was groomed to become the tribe’s high priest. At the tender age of 11 Joshua became the youngest ever high priest of the Krahn tribe. A choice that was made for him by the Krahn elders, against the wishes of his parents. Joshua served as high priest for 14 years fulfilling all the duties of the high priest, including monthly human sacrifice.
In 1989 civil war broke out. Joshua at the urging of his tribe entered the war to fight for them. He became the notorious and feared “General Butt Naked”. So named because he and his band of child soldiers fought completely naked, believing that their god would protect them if they fought nude. Joshua fought until 1996, when he had an encounter with Jesus that changed everything. On his birthday, September 30, 1996, Joshua gave his life to the One who set him free.
Joshua immediately began his evangelism ministry. Taking to the streets to spread the gospel, Joshua encountered the people he had hurt while he was high priest and “General Butt Naked”. For the first time he saw their pain and it broke his heart to see the pain he had inflicted on his people. He began seeking out the people he had hurt to ask their forgiveness. Many of them when they saw a very different man, forgave him.
With the civil war still ongoing, Joshua fled to Ghana, where he lived in a refugee camp, with his family for 10 years. While there he traveled to many countries holding crusades, including, Cameroon, Chad, Equatorial Guinea, Nigeria, Togo, Benin, and Côte d’ Ivorié
In October 2007 Joshua returned with his family to Liberia to launch his project to rehabilitate the ex-child soldiers. He built his first boys home out of clay bricks and took in several young men, who had been child soldiers.
In 2008, The Liberian Truth and Reconciliation Commission ordered all the rebel generals to appear before the commission to face charges for war crimes. Joshua was the only one to voluntarily show up to testify for his crimes. He told them that he was responsible for no less than 20,000 deaths. They were shocked, not only by the numbers, but by the fact that he told the truth and took responsibility for his actions thereby accepting the consequences. They asked him why he would volunteer to come before him and tell the truth. Joshua told them that Jesus told him that the truth would set him free.
To Joshua’s surprise in July of 2009, he was recommended for amnesty.
Joshua continues to go into the worst most feared ghetto in Liberia to preach the gospel and give hope to the hopeless, the ones who society and even their own families have rejected. The first home Joshua built was destroyed in the monsoon, but he has recently rented a home and brought young men from West Point ghetto to the home to live. The home is fittingly called Liberia’s Hope. These young men have a roof over their heads and food in their stomachs for the first time in years, but best of all, they have love. They are off drugs and they no longer have to steal to survive. They love Joshua and call him daddy. They have hope for a better future. During their year long rehabilitation they will receive training for a job, so they can begin their new lives when they are ready to leave to make room for the next group of young men. Eventually Joshua will build homes on land that was given to him for his ministry, to house many young men and women from the ghetto, who live there as a direct result of the civil war.