When you think of Hope Haven Rwanda, you immediately think of an incredible educational system, which is producing the top scholars in the nation from one of the most impoverished regions of Rwanda. While 70% of our students are in the lowest categories of the poverty index, they are still testing in the top three or four percent of the nation!
We thank God for these results and give Him all the glory. We believe that the domains of physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health are all important. The foundation is faith. As Paul urged the Church at Corinth, we strive to see our neighbors with eyes of faith, not as the world sees them.
Saint Paul wrote, “So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation” (2 Corinthians 5:16-19).
We take this mission of reconciliation seriously. Our educational programs, family services, savings groups, men’s discipleship groups, etc., all work together to create unity in Christ. In 2019, more than 300 individuals gave their lives to Jesus through various programs Hope Haven sponsored and led. We also had more than 50 older students from our school programs who allowed Jesus to embrace them as their forgiver and leader.
In the midst of the pandemic this year, one story really stood out. It is the story of Hakizimana Abuabah. One of Abu’s two wives, Yvonne, joined the Hope Haven savings group and heard the good news about life in Christ during a teaching from God’s Word.
After class, Yvonne decided to follow Jesus, and she returned back home and shared with her family members about her experience. They received this good news with gratitude and agreed to invite Chaplain Shema from Hope Haven into their home to lead them in prayer and tell them more about Jesus. It was during that conversation that Abu and his household made a decision to follow Jesus.
To this day, they are standing strong and hope to get baptized as soon as churches start to baptize again. Today, Abu has changed his name to Thomas. His two wives, Francine and Yvonne, both have three kids with him. Only one out of their six children is attending school, and was unable to attend Hope Haven. We can pray that God opens the door for all six of them to receive a solid education.
Francine also has a tumor on her mouth which makes life very difficult. Life is tough for every member of this family, but they have hope. Please pray with me for this dear family. May God grant them the resources they need to continue to grow—in every domain!
We are grateful for the opportunity to reach so many people. Many have trusted in Christ for the first time, and many others who have drifted away from God have returned to Him.
May God continue to show us how to serve our brothers and sisters who are struggling around us…or maybe even as far away as Rwanda.