Dear ITEM Partner,
I am heading home late LATE Sunday night. In fact, departure is 1 minute before Monday (11:59pm Nairobi time). Today was an off day. After taking a trip to see the property where Intl Leadership U is building its extension campus I was able to get caught up on some thing.
One thing I neglected to share yesterday, Friday, was an insight I gained about why some Africans say Christianity is not African. Colonialism is not a popular topic here. And since colonialists brought Christianity to Africa, some say Christianity is the religion of the colonialists and that Africa has its own religion. I think this parallels the claim by some that Christianity is just a white-man’s religion. This is certainly a topic I will need to speak to down the road at some point.
Nairobi, Jan 13:
I started in Nairobi with a one-day seminar on Saturday, Jan 13. I worked with some young people who want to become efficient in defending the faith and answering hard questions their peers are asking. Some have completed an online apologetics certificate program. We are setting up a WhatsApp group to continue the process.
Kigali, Jan 16, 17:
I flew to Kigali, Rwanda on Monday Jan 15. On the 16th I was interviewed on TV and later on radio. On the 17th, I did a one day defending-the-faith seminar (apologetics) for a group of leaders from around Kigali. This was a hand picked group by a prominent pastor in the Kigali area. It was well received and I am waiting on word from the seminar organizer on next steps.
Huye, Jan 19, 20:
On Jan 18, Emmy (the young man who organizes events with U of Rwanda students and youth leaders from around the university) drove us to Huye, Rwanda where the U of Rwanda is located. I spoke there last July. Emmy had set up a Friday night rally where I’d speak to students at the outdoor stadium on the topic: Reasons to Believe Christianity is True. It was a mostly Christian audience of 2500+ students. It was a wonderful WONDERFUL experience. That was followed by an all day seminar on Saturday Jan 20. That was well attended also. I met with a room full of student leaders much like I did last July, when I was on campus. We continued building into them a biblical Christian worldview and offering them tools by which they can engage their fellow students on the truth claims of Christianity.
Emmy and I discussed a long term strategy, and he wants us to target all seven U of Rwanda campuses. He and I will begin interacting on what that may look like.
Harare, Jan 24, 25:
On Sunday, Jan 21 I flew back to Nairobi and on the 23rd onto Harare, Zimbabwe. This was my first time there. Beginning that evening, then all day on the 24th, and half the day on the 25th, I partnered with men from Apologetics on Mission (Oregon) to conduct an intro to apologetics seminar. There were reps from 11 southern African countries. Again, it was well received. Many wanted to enroll in the online apologetics certificate program that AoM does. As far as new doors opening for me, I’m not sure. I should know something soon.
ILU Nairobi, Jan 26:
I flew back to Nairobi the evening of the 25th in time to lead late afternoon session at the Intl Leadership University. There were Christian students from several local universities and I gave two presentations: The What, Why, and How of Apologetics, and, How to Use Questions to Answer Questions. I felt it went very well. I received an immediate invite to speak at one of the campuses but it is in Feb and I’ll be “long gone” by then. One student asked me to mentor him in apologetics. And others said they would be in touch. Besides that, the organizer and I will continue to strategize when it comes to having a presence on these universities.
My next trip will start mid to late April. I know I will be in Lagos, Nigeria and today was asked if I’d consider being a part of a seminar at Life Seminary there. I had already committed to a week in mid April. This is not until early May. I won’t do both. I also know I’ll be in Uganda near or at Kampala Intl University (Kampala is the capital).
Thanks for coming with me on this trip. I pray you can see how ITEM is now working with two generations of church leaders in Africa. For 20 years we’ve focused on the current generation of pastors. Considering that Africa is the youngest continent on earth (mean age 18.8 years, 60% under 25 years of age), ITEM is now ministering to the next generation of church leaders also, preparing them to meet the challenges that are already coming out of the west.
Pray that God continues to open doors as we minister to the current and future church leaders in Africa.
By His grace,
Next Gen Ministry
I uploaded a lot of pictures from our event Friday at ILU and a couple of short, fun videos of my trip to see the property I described above. CLICK HERE FOR PHOTO ALBUM