Rwanda is largely a Christian country, with churches located on most street corners. However, 90% of pastors in Rwanda have not received any theological training and the prosperity gospel is fast taking root.
Discipling the Next Generation is a new initiative that seeks to raise up the next generation in Rwanda to understand the gospel and to live in light of it. Spearheaded by Rwandan Jean Ngirimana, the project works with university students to train them in how to teach the gospel faithfully to children and young people. As well as being equipped for studying and teaching the Bible, the students are taught how to model faithful bible teaching and how to train up other children’s and youth workers. In between residential training sessions, the students meet in local small groups to read the Bible together and help each other apply the skills they have been learning. The project also runs evangelistic children’s clubs and camps for teenagers, so that the students can put into practice what they learn. The long-term vision of Discipling the Next Generation is for people to be equipped to reach out with the gospel to as many children and teenagers as possible, and are also able to equip others for the same task.
From September 2018 until August 2019, Jean Ngirimana will be studying on the Cornhill Training Course in London, to gain more ministry experience and bible knowledge to help him in his role with Discipling the Next Generation. During this time, Philemon Niyomahoro will take the lead in running the project in Rwanda. Philemon has worked alongside Jean since 2016 and will run the project under the oversight of Jean and two local bible teachers, Determine Syldio and Daniel Ledama.
‘For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith - and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God - not by works, so that no one can boast.’ (Ephesians 2:8) Salvation is entirely a work of God, we contribute nothing. This is a great good news for every Christian.
Since September we have been studying the five Solas of the protestant reformation with the new group of apprentices (pictured above). These are known to be a key summary of the essentials of Christian faith. The verse above has been a great rediscovery for all of us. We realised that Sunday school teachers need robust theology, not just ‘how to...’ kind of training. We need to be grounded in the faith, being able to understand and articulate what we believe, only then we shall be effective in our ministry amongst children. This is why we are continually being convinced that discipleship of children’s leaders should be our philosophy of doing ministry in Rwanda.
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