Dear ITEM Next Gen Min Friends,
I am settled in Huye, Rwanda which is 86 miles south and west of Kigali, the capital. The trip takes us through small towns and villages with a lot of farming of all kinds: bananas, rice, and corn. That 86 mile trip took right at 3 hours. You can do the math. It is one lane in each direction. It is a major trade route. So, you spend a lot of time following slow trucks going up hills. I have put a map in the picture album.
I am at the same hotel I was at last July when I was here; the Light House Hotel. Bed and breakfast… 30,000 per night. At the exchange rate I was given today, that is $23 per night. It is near the university where I will be speaking tomorrow night after school. Actually, we start at about 8:30pm Friday, which is 10:30am PST back home in Oregon.
The young man that is organizing these events at the U of Rwanda is Emmanuel Nshimiyimana. We just call him Emmy. I knew he was connected with youth leadership but I didn’t know until today that he is the National Youth Coordinator for the Presbyterian church in this country! (Let me pause here and say that with the youth leaders I met in Kigali the past couple of days, along with Emmy, there are some big possibilities here in Rwanda. Remember: Youth here is 18-35 and single…thus, we are calling this ITEM’s Next Gen Ministry.)
I wish I could remember everything we talked but I can’t. I just know that the emerging generation here is not much different than the same generation in the US. And large numbers leave the church after they move out of their parents home, just like those in the US.
I asked him about where the universities here get their professors and Emmy said Africa, the US, and Europe. I warned him about US and European professors bringing their atheistic ideologies with them, and how that will turn the emerging generations away from God and the church as they have done in the US. He told me it is already happening.
He told me of a professor who challenged his students to think about the faith they grew up with and challenged them to find an answer to the question, “If the is a God, then why does He allow evil?” And this wasn’t even a religion class. The prof just found a way to slip that into his lecture on another subject. There are at least two good answers to that question but if the student has not been told the answer before then, it might be too late.
Emmy and I talked about the future of apologetics in Rwanda. I shared with him my vision for training others to do “give a reason/answer,” and speaking to larger groups like I will be doing Friday night. We talked about talking to high schoolers. He said they are responsive and want to know. I mentioned that they need to be told “why” Christianity is true, not just that it IS. In other words, they need to be taught the “why” behind the “what.”
Most else of what we talked about is what I talked with Vital about back in Kigali a couple of days ago.
As I mentioned, I have the privilege of speaking to 1000-1500 college age men and women tomorrow night. He asked me to explain why we believe Christianity is true and Jesus is the only way to eternal life with God in heaven.
Saturday is an all day, four presentations, seminar. I’ll have more to say about that another time.
I uploaded a lot of new pics taken at yesterday’s seminar, plus some from our journey today from Kigali (pronounced: Key-‘GAH-Lee) to Huye (pronounced: WHO-yay).
Praise for safe journey
Praise for good health (so far)
For receptivity of students Fri night
For clarity as I speak through and interpreter Friday
For God to raise up a missionary-apologist to train with me.
All for now.
By His grace,
I’ve added LOADS of pics from the seminar yesterday and the trip today. When looking at pics from the seminar, notice one guy who was always looking at his phone. 😊 CLICK HERE FOR ALBUM
Click Here to view new pictures.