MEET HANNAH CAPPOZI: she took a giant leap of faith and saw the Lord at work.
What inspired you to start Arimathea Ministries?
My father-in-law actually started and initially lunched Arimathea ministries in 2018 as a 30-year old vision with a heart to see pastors and leaders in churches loved on and restored before they reach complete burnout. The statistics for pastoral burnout are astonishing. He went through a very hard season of life and experienced burnout for himself. The Lord spoke to him once he was finally able to take a sabbatical, and told him that He would bring this to fruition. Fast-forward to 2018, and we built our first house and base of pastors to retreat to in Branson, Missouri, and now we are moving on to American Samoa. As his daughter-in-law and worship leader, my heart immediately joined in with his - even before I was ever part of the family. With my father-in-law's connections, vision, and dedication to the vision God gave him, I have joined along side him with my vision to help build reliable healthcare and electric power to the islands, as well as sharing a heart for the people and to see denominational walls fall in order to see God's church as the full and connected body of Christ.
What was one of the challenges you faced during the early days of your ministry, and how did the Lord help you overcome it?
The first time I ever used FTN was when I made my initial move to Arizona. I was pursuing an internship with the chance of ministry in the Samoan islands at a church that I strongly felt God calling me to in a state that I had never been to, nor did I know anyone who lived here. I was born and raised in Texas and was attending college at a private school there. Little did I know that I was in a very pivotal season of my life. After 4 months of organizing my moving details and fundraising with FTN, I finally made the leap of faith in moving to an unknown place - and man, does God know how to work and move through our seasons of unknown. I spent a year off of school and in a rigorous internship program where God revealed to me my heart for missions, my future husband, and the ministry that I would join. I had to fully trust on God for years to come that He would bring every promise that He made to me from the start to fruition. Now, 5 years later, I'm 7-months married to my husband, working in the worship ministry that I love, and standing at the threshold of His missions promise to me in my next season of life. Without God's guiding, provision, and refining of my character, I would have missed out on so many fantastic God-organized blessings.
For my father-in-law's experience, any ministry or base to be established in the Samoan islands takes much time and intentional connections. He has always had a heart for the people, and has spent the last 6 years building relationships with Chiefs, government officials, leaders, ministers, pastors, exchange program leaders across the globe, and so much more. Arimathea Ministries is his baby, and I'm just one piece that God has brought into it that will help to bring this vision together. Without my father-in-law's obedience to the Lord's call - even through Dengue fever on his first trip to the islands, monetary setbacks, and many other obstacles - we would not be finalizing the stages of our Samoan base now. Through complete faith that God will work in His time and in His ways, we are able to be here, in this season now.
What have you learned about yourself through this step of faith?
This has really given the verse of 'faith like a child,' a whole new meaning. Not only for myself, but for those in and impacted by Arimathea Ministries as well. I have learned so much in what God has brought me through to know that no matter what the situation looks like; no mater what others around you may say; no mater what season of life you may feel like you're in; God ALWAYS fulfills His promises. He is faithful always. If I can confidently say that God has brought me to something, I know that if I have faith in Him and His timing, He will always make it happen and see it through - I'm just the one who needs to adjust myself and my heart to his timing.
How do you hope this will inspire others?
Bottom line - God loves us, and always growing and understanding another depth of this truth has been such an inspiration for me and I hope that it is to others as well. From this crazy amazing, never-ending, vastly deep love for us, God wants to blow the roof off of our expectations. This is one way that He shows us just how much He really does love us. NEVER in a million years or even in my craziest guesses would I have ever thought that I would be living in Arizona, working with government officials in the US mainland and the Samoan islands, married to my dream man, and working in a ministry I love. It's been a long and trying road to get here, but God is always faithful to make all things work together for the good of those who love Him (Romans 8:28). No matter what God has revealed to you, He knows the desires of your heart and wants even better than what you could ever imagine for your life. Struggles and setbacks will always come - those were promised to us - but so is God's Holy Spirit and the power through Him that has been gifted to us. Don't let your own doubts or expectations steal God's promises away. Instead, use these moments to ask God what he wants to refine in you or reveal to you.
What’s one thing you wish everyone knew about serving others?
Not every moment is heart-warming work that you always feel prepared for. It's not always the picture-perfect moment that you might see from other's missions pages or outreach bulletins. Serving others is a day to day ministry that we are called to walk out in living our lives as a form of worship. Serving others is always about your heart behind it. Sometimes there are gut-wrenching moments where you just sit and cry with others. Sometimes it celebrating a small victory with someone who may have been struggling with their faith lately. Serving others is practical acts of love and ministering Jesus's love how others can best receive it. And be sure that you let others serve you as well. Jesus had moments of rest where he retreated to a secluded area with those He loved most. Just as Jesus humbled himself and washed others' feet, let others do the same for you. We are not Jesus, but we should strive to be like him; and because we are human, we need rest too. In serving others, don't rob them of the blessing of serving you as well.