Reaching Rwanda with the Gospel

Imagine a country with sloping mountains and a national park dedicated to volcanos, gorillas, and golden monkeys and you have just a small picture of Rwanda. Nestled between the Democratic Republic of Congo, Uganda, Burundi, and Tanzania, Rwanda has a big reputation for such a small country.

Over the years, this African nation has been the focal point of world news from devastating genocide to its most recent re-election of its president, Paul Kagame. It could be easy to assign Rwanda to only these news stories and ignore the great strides this country has made in the last two decades.

Those strides, in part, are due to a slow and subtle move among its people and has its roots in the Christian church. There are many missionaries and organizations that find work in Rwanda from the United States, providing help and aid. But some of the most powerful stories of hope and change are coming from pastors who call Rwanda home.

Pastors like Pastor Ananie. Read more

Students Graduate From Bible Training

pic 2In 2015, With Open Eyes partnered with Leadership International and Serge to pilot a comprehensive Bible training program in three locations in Kenya. Many students walked for miles to class, some walked for days, to attend a week-long intensive Bible study each month for a year. While their dedication was unrelenting, we are proud to say the last of the trainees have now graduated. Some already in pastoral roles, they are all eager to go and fulfill the Great Commission.

After the graduation, there were many celebratory ceremonies within their own communities.  The latest celebration was held at a church in Meto, which is on the border of Kenya and Tanzania, where 24 students marched into the church wearing robes of many colors. While many students are awaiting transportation to become Mobile Messengers, three graduates were commissioned with motorbikes allowing them to now reach remote locations in minutes and hours, not days. With Open Eyes has commissioned a total of 260 Mobile Messengers to-date throughout Kenya, Sudan, South Sudan, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, DR Congo and Ethiopia. Read more

Mobile Messengers Among the Maasai People

DSCF8692The Maasai people of East Africa live in southern Kenya and northern Tanzania along the Great Rift Valley on semi-arid and arid lands. It is estimated that there are approximately 1 million Maasia people in Kenya and Tanzania. However, the real number is unknown, as many Maasai see the national census as government intrusion and often miscount their numbers to census takers. Some want to be counted as many as ten times, while many refuse to be counted at all.

The Maasai live in “kraals,” or villages, arranged in a circular fashion. The fence around the kraal is made of acacia thorns, which prevent lions from attacking the cattle. It is a man’s responsibility to fence the kraal, while women construct the houses. Traditionally, kraals are shared by extended family.

Livestock, such as cattle, goats and sheep are the primary source of income for most Maasai. Livestock serves as a social utility in the culture and plays a vital role in the Maasai economy. Besides livestock, children are highly valued and add significance and worth to the Maasia. “Meishoo iyiook enkai inkishu o-nkera” is a Maasai prayer which translated means, “May Creator give us cattle and children.” Read more

How Far?

The thought occurred to me early this morning: “How far would you walk to share the good news of Jesus?” It has bothered me all day because I’m afraid I know the answer. In Africa, many pastors walk for days to reach remote villages to share the gospel. It takes dedication and true passion to do what they do. No one walks for hours or days to share something they aren’t passionate about. I don’t think I will ever forget what one pastor currently in our Bible training class in Namanga shared with us as he described walking many miles each week:

“What God is doing is not in vain. It is our life. It is not simple.”

As this pastor and numerous others complete their training in March, we are looking forward to helping them to accelerate their preaching of the gospel by equipping them with motorcycles. By adding training and mobilization to the passion God has ignited in them, With Open Eyes is reaching the unreached and seeing thousands come to faith in Christ. Your prayers and financial assistance will play a direct role in the work. Please consider a generous gift to help us accelerate the sharing of the gospel.

2nd Quarter Mobile Messenger Reports

Reports are in! During the 2nd quarter, our Ministry Partners reported over 10,000 professions of faith and 41 new church plants! It is amazing to witness how God is moving through the pastors and churches in East Africa! Thank you for your continuous support of their ministries.

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“The number of believers are increasing as a result of The Jesus Film equipment you assisted us with. In addition the motorbikes and bicycles are helping our Mobile Messengers to speed up the message of Christ to villages.” ~Rwanda Ministry Partner

“We held evangelism in two villages. The people we met were desperate for the Word. We thank the Lord that 60 people got saved! We were able to move extra miles because of the motorcycle and a bicycle we got from WOE. May the Lord keep blessing you mightily.” ~Rwanda Mobile Messenger

“We did door to door evangelism and conducted a public rally. We thank the Lord to have saved 350 people! We formed a discipleship class to help these dear ones grow in the knowledge of Christ and be connected to the church near them. It was not by our own power but the power of Jesus that helped us to experience this harvest.” ~Rwanda Mobile Messenger

“Despite the rainy season hindering travel, the Mobile Messengers have planted 3 new churches! Many there are sick and there is no medicine.” ~ Sudan Ministry Partner

“We are constructing a structure for a newly planted church in March. Mobile Messengers encouraged the new church to build a structure since the area has a strong number of youth, many who have relocated to the area.” ~South Sudan Ministry Partner

“In April, we held a four day conference in the Lozoh area. Mobile Messenger reported the need for bible teaching and prayer in this area due to many people practicing witchcraft. A 72 year old man that had practiced witchcraft his entire life professed his faith in Christ during the conference! We praise God that the Word touches his heart and he gave his life to Christ!” ~South Sudan Ministry Partner

“During these months I traveled a lot for ministry reasons. God has been very faithful to me and taken care of me even in dangerous zones. I remember one day when I got a puncture in a tire after taking a church member to the hospital with my motorbike. It was in the middle of the bush and due to the current drought the animals have moved  close, even to people’s residential areas. I saw an elephant pass by but God closed its eyes just as He closed the lions’ mouths for Daniel in the Bible. It didn’t harm me. I managed to fix the punture and proceeded home. It was very dangerous but I felt an encouraging voice and spirit from within me. I knew I was not alone but that someone, somewhere was uplifting me to God. Thank you With Open Eyes for the Monday prayers for the Mobile Messengers. The prayers have kept me going even at my most risky. My family is well too and I thank God for taking care of them when I am away for ministry. Thanks for praying for our families.” ~Kenya Mobile Messenger

“Our Mobile Messengers have been very busy serving God in the field. Thanks be to God for the motorbikes. They have really accelerated sharing the Gospel and planting more churches.” ~Kenya Ministry Partner

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