Page 1

in 1991. I worked as a pastor in the cathedral as well as being diocesan accountant. In 1993 I was appointed director at a new Bible college just outside Kigali, but five months later there was genocide. Describe how you ended up teaching theology in a refugee camp.

Grabbing the Baton Interview with Canon Pheneas Zimulinda from Byumba, Rwanda We caught up with Pheneas, who has taken over responsibilities from Meg Guillebaud as principal of Byumba Bible College. . . amongst many other things Pheneas, how did you first start following Jesus? I was born in a Christian family; my father was a pastor. He encouraged us to follow Jesus,

but in my heart I wasn’t really following him until later in life. I was having some problems and I asked Jesus for some practical help and he helped me. I knew I could trust him and decided to follow him and enter ministry. I went to St Paul’s Theological College at Limuru, Kenya, for three years, gaining a diploma. I was ordained deacon in Kigali Diocese in 1989 and priested

I had to run away and found myself in a refugee camp in Goma and I came across some of my students, about six of them. I had the idea to continue their studies within the camp so they could help others. CMS helped me buy books so I could continue teaching my students in the refugee camp. Today, I know that three of those students are pastors. How did you meet Meg? I returned to Rwanda in 1998 and started working in Byumba Diocese, first as a teacher in the Bible school that Meg Guillebaud had started, and then as diocesan secretary until 2002. I was appointed headmaster of the diocesan secondary school and made a canon of the cathedral in 2005. In 2007 I came back to Byumba to work as Meg’s assistant and then took over from her as director in January 2008. We still teach together.

4

continued over


in 1991. I worked as a pastor in the cathedral as well as being diocesan accountant. In 1993 I was appointed director at a new Bible college just outside Kigali, but five months later there was genocide. Describe how you ended up teaching theology in a refugee camp.

Grabbing the Baton

Interview with Canon Pheneas Zimiulinda from Byumba, Rwanda

We caught up with Pheneas, who has taken over responsibilities from Meg Guillebaud as principal of Byumba Bible College.. amongst many other things Pheneas, how did you first start following Jesus? I was born in a Christian family; my father was a pastor. He encouraged us to follow Jesus,

but in my heart I wasn’t really following him until later in life. I was having some problems and I asked Jesus for some practical help and he helped me. I knew I could trust him and decided to follow him and enter ministry. I went to St Paul’s Theological College at Limuru, Kenya for three years, gaining a diploma. I was ordained deacon in Kigali Diocese in 1989 and priested

I had to run away and found myself in a refugee camp in Goma and I came across some of my students, about six of them. I had the idea to continue their studies within the camp so they could help others. CMS helped me buy books so I could continue teaching my students in the refugee camp. Today, I know that three of those students are now pastors. How did you meet Meg? I returned to Rwanda in 1998 and started working in Byumba Diocese, first as a teacher in the Bible school that Meg Guillebaud had started, and then as diocesan secretary until 2002. I was appointed headmaster of the diocesan secondary school and made a canon of the cathedral in 2005. In 2007 I came back to Byumba to work as Meg’s assistant and then took over from her as director in January 2008. We still teach together.

4

continued over

Dear Friend of Mid Africa I hope you will enjoy the new format of Mid Africa News. A big thank you to all of you who have encouraged your friends to sign up to receive their own copies, so CMS can save postage on bulk mailings. This edition highlights Rwanda and the rich variety of ways people in the UK are linking with the church there. Every church or individual I know who has partnered with Christians beyond this country will testify how this has enriched their faith and vision. Speaking of walking alongside our brothers and sisters worldwide, you should have received a mailing from CMS inviting you to sign up as a member of the CMS community. If you are already a member, please note that the integration of CMS with SAMS has made it a legal necessity to renew your membership. To signal your ongoing commitment to the mission of God, please do return the membership form. If you aren’t already a member, please consider becoming one. Wishing you every blessing

4Why is theological education and the training of catechists so important for Rwanda?

During the genocide we lost so many church leaders. Now our diocese is growing; we need leaders to help meet people’s needs. Our government is emphasizing quality training of our civil servants; we don’t want pastors to be left behind in terms of good training. Through the Bible college, we’ve trained over 300 people who are now serving hundreds of others as associate pastors, priests, etc. What’s your vision for the future of theological education? We want to start more satellite centres, so people can learn locally. We’re developing materials, resources to help trainers train others. We also want to do more refresher courses on discipleship and courses that will help people look to the Bible and apply it to their contexts. What do you need to make this happen? We need prayer that our hearts will be encouraged so that we can live up to the task. It’s hard to find time to sit down, translate material, write new resources. A big thank you to those who support me through CMS’ Timothy Fund. You are in the UK for a few weeks; what message will you share with UK churches? I will tell them of the good things happening in Rwanda, of all the blessings we’ve been given. God has given us a powerful message of forgiveness. This message has helped our churches and our people to restore our nation. In addition to his role at the Bible College, Pheneas is also in charge of evangelism and education for the diocese. He also cares for two parishes. He has four children and his wife works with Well Spring Foundation in Kigali. Pheneas is a local mission partner supported by The Timothy Fund of CMS

William Challis Chair, CMS Mid Africa Forum Do you receive Mid Africa News direct to your home? After this edition, we will no longer be sending bulk copies of MID AFRICA NEWS magazine. If you currently receive MID AFRICA NEWS from another person, please take a moment to send your name and address to Attn: MID AFRICA NEWS, CMS, Watlington Road, OX4 6BZ and we will send you MID AFRICA NEWS directly. Or simply call 01865 787400 or email info@ cms-uk.org and we will add your name to the MID AFRICA NEWS list. Thank you for helping us be a good steward of our resources in this way!

Pheneas with Steve Burgess CMS


Rwanda within reach Here are just some of the ways that UK folks are linking with Rwanda and vise versa School links Each February for the past three years, a team of 12 pupils from The King’s School in Fair Oak have visited the mountains of Kigali in Rwanda to serve and support a growing African school. The reward for pupils and teachers alike is the experience of a lifetime, learning alongside some of the poorest people in the world. Pupils lead sessions in sport and drama and take part in special meetings in the evening. The national radio station features a live daily programme hosted by the team, yet another opportunity for young people at the King’s School to develop unique skills. Pupils are prepared by CMS in Oxford. Steve Johnson leads them through a range of sessions designed to build confidence in engaging with different cultures, a vital skill for young people going to Africa. Pupils also get a chance to share their expectations and concerns with experienced field workers before they find themselves immersed in a challenging situation. Head Master Paul Johnson says, “The most moving part of the visit is how well we are received by the local people, especially the children. As soon as the bus arrives at the Kigali school, we are surrounded by hundreds of smiling faces all eager to hear what we have to share. The

reality is that we learn far more from the experience and our plan is to arrange a visit every year. CMS help us understand how to respond effectively in a very different cultural context. Their experience is invaluable and pupils find the training days fun.” The King’s School have found working with CMS has turned an exciting school trip into a focused learning experience. The plan is to explore other exciting mission opportunities in the future. From one pupil: “This trip has been amazing! Everything I have seen, all the people I have met, the choices I have had to make. All of it changes your life in a big way. I’m kind of sad it’s nearly over but still so excited for the last few days and I will definitely be coming back!” Jack Equip, a Southampton-based educational charity helped make this project possible.

Byumba Trust Child-headed orphan families are just one of the challenges facing the church in Rwanda. Through the Byumba Trust people in the UK have an opportunity to support the priorities of Byumba diocese and its 32 parishes. On offer are three-year sponsorships of

child-headed orphan families through the work of the Hannah Ministry (Tumurere). Byumba diocese, 55 miles north of the capital Kigali, close to the Uganda border, ministers in a place where half the population are children. Ten percent of the people are HIV-infected.

From Lyndhurst with love Lyndhurst Deanery in Southampton (Winchester Diocese) is hugely energetic in its links with Rwanda. Altogether 21 people from this deanery are heading for Rwanda for two weeks from 11 August. Joining them is Jonathan Elliott-Jones from Sway, who aims to pave the way for a Rwandan parish link with Sway parish. The group will consist of teenagers and adults. Visiting CMS House in March were Felibien Ndintore and Philbert Kalisa. Felibien leads Rema Ministries supporting repatriation of refugees and peace building in Burundi. Rema’s work includes evangelism, peace building, HIV/Aids projects and setting up a clinic for returning refugees. REACH (reconciliation evangelism and Christian healing) was set up following the 1994 genocide in Rwanda to promote forgiveness and reconciliation through teaching, trauma healing, restorative justice, reintegration of released prisoners and community building.


Annette Coomer

Drs Bertha & Wim Schoonbee

The Anglican Church of Rwanda:

L’Eglise Anglicane au Rwanda General Population: 8.7 million; geographical area: 26, 340 square kms; Estimates for numbers of Anglicans range from 170,000 (Anglican Communion Office) to one million (Anglican Mainstream) Ten dioceses: Butare: The Rt Rev Nathan Gasatura; Companion Link: Winchester Byumba: The Rt Rev Onesphore Rwaje; Companion Links: Winchester, Glasgow & Galloway, Kentucky Cyangugu: The Rt Revd Geoffrey Rwubusisi; Companion Links: Winchester, Aotearoa Gahini: The Rt Rev Alexis Bilindabagabo; Companion Links: Winchester, Gippsland Kibungo, Rt Rev Josias Sendegeya, Companion Link: Winchester Kigali: Archbishop Emanuel Kolini. Bishop Elect The Rev Louis Muvunyi. Companion Link: Winchester


Kigeme: The Rt Rev Augustin Mvunabandi; Companion Link: Winchester Kivu: Rt Rev Augustine Ahimana Shyira: The Rt Revd John Rucyahana Kabango; Companion Links: Pittsburgh, Winchester Shyogwe: The Rt Revd Jered Kalimba; Companion Link: Winchester The former Ruanda Mission established its first station at Gahini in 1925 and grew through the revival of the 1930s and 1940s, with the first Rwandan Bishop appointed in 1965. Dioceses have up to 40 parishes, which in turn comprise 15-20 congregations. The Church is engaged in a ministry to the many traumatised people in Rwanda, seeking reconciliation, restoration, and rehabilitation. It works in rural development, health, vocational training and education.

Mission Partners Drs Wim & Bertha Schoonbee, Gahini Hospital Short Termer Annette Coomer Physiotherapist, Gahini Hospital SALT Fellowship David & Liz Gregory-Smith, KIST and Kigali Anglican Theological College Meg Guillebaud, Trainer, Byumba Local mission partner Pheneas Zimulinda

Liz & David Gregory Smith

Pheneas Zimulinda with Meg Guillebaud


Academic challenge David Gregory-Smith (below) has been in a post-retirement placement at Kigali Institute for Science and Technology (KIST) for the past three years. His wife Liz teaches at Kigali Anglican Theological College. They have connected with CMS through the SALT programme. It’s the last Tuesday morning of the 12-week teaching period. It’s a big day because you are taking your third year aerodynamics students to the airport to see aeroplanes, helicopters and the terminal building. There are no facilities at KIST for practical work, so this is the next best thing. Many students have never seen a plane close up and none have actually flown in one. You are suddenly told that the KIST bus is in the garage and that you’ll have to reschedule the visit. You are frustrated. Don’t they realise the academic importance of the visit for students? This was my experience last week and it sharpened a lot of questions for me. How can I react in a way to maintain a Christian witness, but express my dissatisfaction? With my western cultural background, how much should I criticize? I do not think it is OK just to say, ‘Well this is Africa!’ That is being cynical. Can I help bring about any change for the better? If not, is this really mission, serving Christ and the people of Rwanda? I’ve tried to help people do

things rather than do it for them. The role I have been asked to take on is to help raise standards, improving learning and teaching methods, setting up procedures for documentation and enhancement of degree courses. So when I see students unable to live up to their potential or frustrated staff, I feel called to challenge the current system. As we are here for six months out of the year, I find that it’s good when I introduce new activities or ideas to leave and let the staff here take them on. I have seen improvements at KIST since 2008, certainly not due only to me, but mainly brought about by a change in senior management, particularly on the academic side where the Vice-Rector is very good and a delight to work under. Being in Rwanda, helping develop an academic institution, seems to be God’s place for us at the moment. Despite some frustrations, there is so much good about being here, and I can see a continuing need for people who have academic experience to come alongside institutions in Rwanda either for medium or long-term.

Beauty and the beast Jenny Green unmasks a terrible beast that stalks a beautiful part of Africa Kisoro is one of the most beautiful parts of the world. People spend a small fortune to get here, climb the mountains and visit its rare silverback mountain gorillas. The people are also beautiful. I’m constantly surrounded by gorgeous children, so loveable and winsome. So how is it that a terrible beast prowls on the streets and in the villages of this amazing place? This beast is hard to identify, catch and eradicate. It has several names: poverty, neglect, ignorance and callousness. The generic term for it is child vulnerability. When it strikes a child the results are catastrophic. According to statistics 25% of all children in Kisoro district are affected by this terrible beast. Many of them will die before they reach the age of five years. “Angel” (real name withheld) was 12 when her mother committed suicide. Her father soon remarried. As frequently happens when a stepmother


enters the home, Angel and her sister were evicted to fend for themselves. Believing the streets of Kampala were paved with gold, she headed there. Ignorant of the dangers, she was raped and became pregnant. Returning to Kisoro, she gave birth – a painful and traumatic experience for mother and baby. Her baby took a long time to find his first breath and spent many days struggling between life and death. He lived, but with brain damage. Three months later during morning prayers the peace was disturbed by an awful sound like an animal in its death throes. On the veranda was Angel, carrying a bundle of baby in severe respiratory distress. With amazing courage and commitment, she had been expressing breast milk every two hours, feeding her baby by tube because he could not suckle. For the final weeks of her baby’s life she was supported by the Potter’s Village, a caring Christian community that offers hope and

a future to vulnerable children. She was not alone for those agonising days as her baby’s life faded away. Now she has friends, people to support and pray for her. A volunteer’s position with the Potter’s Village provides a little financial assistance to help her keep off the streets. Ben’s mum died as soon as he was born. His family held him responsible for her death. So they agreed to ignore him and let him die - a decision justified by poverty of the family. Fortunately a compassionate neighbour knew about the Potter’s Village and asked us to intervene. Now he’s a big bouncy boy, full of smiles and promise. The last child, whom I’ll call Blessing, has a mum who is mentally unstable. Blessing will never know who her dad is, as her mother sometimes works as a prostitute. When Blessing was two, she fell in a fire. When her mum eventually got her to hospital she had no priority because her mum is a “nobody”

in many eyes. So Blessing’s burnt right hand and arm contracted seriously, and she faced an early death due to her obvious incapacity to work and live independently. Someone told her mum about Potter’s Village. Today she is running around and using her now straight but still scarred arm. Thanks to plastic surgeon Andrew Hodges and his team, and housing, funding and support provided by the Potter’s Village, she and her mum now have a more hopeful future. But what about the others? The Potters Village is providing a refuge for some children to escape the ravages of the beast that stalks SW Uganda, Rwanda and Congo. The love of God made known through his people is the only effective rescue.

Getting back to the future

An interview with Rev Emmanuel Gatera, Provincial Secretary of the Anglican Church of Rwanda The 1993 genocide was a huge trauma for Rwanda. There are deep wounds, but now the country is moving forward according to the Rev Emmanuel Gatera, the Church’s Provincial Secretary. “This is a small landlocked country but despite this it is now doing well economically. The government has been able to

attract a lot of investment. It is working hard to fight corruption and create an environment where people thrive,” he says. “Rwanda is opening itself up to multiparty democracy. Later this year there will be a presidential election. Some of the people standing as candidates fled the country after 1993. That they have come back and wish to stand for office is a sign

that democracy is emerging. Countries from all over Africa are coming to learn from us how we faced the issues and how we are working to involve Hutus and Tutsis in the process of healing and reconciliation. We thank God for what has been achieved.” He says the genocide left an acute shortage of pastors. Some were killed. Others fled. Plans were needed to train up more

4

continued over


4

pastors and teachers and it was essential that they be better educated than previously. All this seeded a vision for a Christian university in the country. Plans are underway to upgrade the Kigali Anglican Theological College. There is now a formal link with Bishop Barnham University Collage at Kabale, part of Uganda Christian University, based at the former Bishop Tucker College near Kampala.

As well as providing muchneeded pastors and teachers, another important role for the University will be to help change attitudes among community leaders. “There were Christian people engaged in the genocide. If we are to heal wounds and go forward we need educated, skilled people, people who can give leadership in the community, people who can work across the Hutu/Tutsi divide.

The starting point for the new university is theological training. A mapping exercise is underway to launch faculties in teacher education, business, ICT and economic development. Creating a university involves money. “We need funds for a library, classrooms, student accommodation and much more. So we are looking to our friends in CMS and beyond.”

MA NEWS BRIEFS

to support the fight against malaria. The initiative, dubbed the Coalition of Religious Organisations for Health (CORESA, after its French acronym) will receive some money from the Global Fund for HIV/ AIDS, Malaria and Tuberculosis, as well as raise money independently for malaria prevention. (All Africa News Service)

would come up to Bunia and spend time with young people. They were thrilled that the bishop would allow them to ask questions.

A group of unidentified gunmen forced their way into the home of Congolese Bishop Sylvestre Bali-Busane Bahati of the Anglican Diocese of Bukavu during the early hours of 9 April, looting property and leaving with money, clothes and electronic equipment. Praise God the bishop was unharmed, but the gunmen tied up his eldest son and injured a security guard. (All Africa News Service) The Most Rev Emmanuel Kolini, Archbishop of Rwanda, has retired. His successor as Bishop of Kigali is Louis Muvunyi, Principal of the Anglican Theological College. The oft-outspoken Dr Kolini, 65, was ordained in 1969, became Assistant Bishop of Bukavu (Congo) in 1980. He served as Bishop of Katanga 1986-97 when he was called to Rwanda as Bishop and Archbishop. He has been a major force for reconciliation. We wish him and his wife Freda a happy retirement. Plans are underway to create a Primatial Diocese in Kigali and a new Archbishop will be elected after that. Eight faith-based organisations, including the Anglican Church, have joined together to set up a pilot project in the Democratic Republic of Congo

MA News Election Watch A whole series of elections are coming up in Africa: Burundi (July 2010) Ghana (Aug 2010) Egypt (Dec 2010) Rwanda (Aug 2010) Tanzania (Oct 2010).

Tributes With sadness we report the death of The Most Rev Njojo Byankya Patrice, Bishop of Boga (1980-2007) and first Archbishop of Congo. He was appointed Archbishop in 1992, when the Eglise Aglicane du Congo became an autonomous province within the Anglican Communion. CMS Mission Partner Judy Acheson pays tribute to his life and work: “He was a delightful man. It was a real privilege to get to know him. He had a real desire to see women empowered. We needed that definitely in those days. I had started up children’s work but he was very concerned for young people. It was lovely to see how he

“It became harder for him when became Archbishop. Travelling around Congo was not easy or safe. He didn’t have email or telephones just two way radio. “He took risks. When the Whengetti were forced to leave in the midst of fighting he personally accompanied them to the border. But that broke him. It was a terribly sad way for his time as a bishop to end. People said, ‘He’s only for the Hema’. Not true. He was there for everyone.’ I will remember him as a personal friend”. We note with sadness the death at 95 years of the Rev Dr Harold Adeney OBE, General Secretary of the Rwanda Mission 1966-72. Harold was in the great tradition of missionary doctors who form the fabric of the story of Anglican mission in the mid-Africa region. He had an infectious enthusiasm for evangelism. Married to Isobel, also a doctor, they served for many years in Burundi before returning to England in 1966 to lead MAM. His evangelistic heart took him back to Burundi to plant church at Gitega. He was ordained in Burundi in 1975 and visited there in his retirement.

CMS is a mission community acknowledged by the Church of England. A company limited by guarantee. Registered in England and Wales, charity number 1131655, company number 6985330, registered office: CMS, Watlington Road, Oxford OX4 6BZ.


Mid-Africa News 2:2010 - June  

Magazine about mission in the Great Lakes region from church Mission Society

Advertisement
Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you