If you know me at all, you know that I get very enthusiastic when talking about how God is at work around the world! It is too easy for us to get fixated on the specific project that we are working on, our local ministry context or our team. We sometimes end up missing the big picture. As J.B. Philips wrote 40 years ago, “Your God is too small.”
A few members of our Rwandan leadership team were recently able to invest two days at a Christian Education conference in Kigali, Rwanda. As we joined educators from around the country, we celebrated the common goals we embrace and marveled at the similarities in our methods. Why do we do what we do as Christian educators? As we read in the sayings of Solomon, the wisest man who ever lived: “Teach children how they should live, and they will remember it all their life” (Proverbs 22:6).
It was wonderful to reconnect with Fred Buyinza, the Founder of Fruits of Hope Academy. Our team recently visited the school he leads and we left with a clear appreciation for their standards and outcomes. According to Fred, “When Christ-centered educators partner with parents and the Church, the result is Godly people willing to serve God wherever He leads them.” He said, “There is a great move in Christian education, because there are some schools that have been started by the Church, privately owned, but they were doing a bit of Christian education independently. But now, we are taking those “outers” and joining them so we can share the experience and what the Lord is doing in particular schools.”
We were introduced to Fruits of Hope Academy by Edify, an organization that comes alongside school leaders who offer Christ-centered education to children in vulnerable communities. One of their team members, Chris Mulisa, joined us for the training and shared some of his insights. In his role, Chris visits schools throughout Rwanda. He is a remarkable man, with a Bachelor’s degree in accounting and the ability to speak seven languages. Chris said, “What I am observing is this, right now, serving the Christian schools in the country, is that schools are coming from isolation and then bringing the same Body of Christ together, serving the same mission.”
One of the catalysts behind this outstanding training event was Brian Bliss, of the Association of Christian School International and the Wellspring Foundation. Brian is working tirelessly to equip Christian educators around Africa to partner and learn with each other. This initial event was quickly followed by another training session just a few weeks ago. We believe that God will continue to transform the nation of Rwanda through quality Christian education and are so grateful that Hope Haven Rwanda can serve alongside astonishing partners like these for this God-sized endeavor!