Visit to Rwanda in Nov 2014

by John E Gore on May 27, 2015

Dear Friends,

 I trust that you had an enjoyable Christmas and New Year. Carol and I, along with the Board of LDM, wish you all the best for the coming twelve months.

Let me now report on my trip to Rwanda in November last year. Apart from the last week which I spent with the Revelation church in Kabarore, it was a very frustrating time. I spent the first two weeks with the Evangelical Friends in Rwanda which are normally well organized, well attended, and where I am very well received. However, they had voted in a new leadership team twelve months ago and, for whatever reason, this trip was poorly organized and very poorly attended. The second week was especially difficult. We headed east and went to a remote village near the Tanzanian border, which I was happy to do; although I was the first mzungu (white man) to visit the area. The Friends had planted a church there and it was going to be formally recognized at the weekend. However, there were no pastors present at the training conference; just a small number of members from the church. As you know, my ministry and my material is geared to training pastors who have some grasp of the basis of the faith. Furthermore, the conditions were the hardest I have ever experienced.

 However, while my first week at Musanze was disappointing when compared with previous years there was something very exciting happening in the Friends church building next to us. Apparently revival has broken out in the area and a 2 day ecumenical prayer and fasting time was taking place in the church. It started around 10am on the Wednesday and continued without a break to Thursday evening. Participants – mainly women since the men had to work – came from most denominations including the Anglicans, Baptists, Catholics, Friends, Methodists, Pentecostals and SDA. I have some videos which I took on the second afternoon and which I hope to post on Facebook for you to watch. They are worth seeing; totally different to anything which happens in the West.

 My last week of training was with the Revelation church and it was, as always, a total joy. We had pastors and evangelists from two other groups but the majority were from the Revelation denomination. The latter are an indigenous church, begun by a man who had grown up in Uganda. They were not started by any missionary group, have no financial support from the West, and therefore have to rely upon God for all their needs. This has developed a movement of great faith. When I was with them last time they had started to erect a new building which would seat 3,000 people. The walls were up at that time but the Bishop had confided in me that raising the money to buy the necessary structural steel and cladding for the roof would be a massive exercise in faith for them. I was so delighted when I approached the village to see the roof completed and to discover that they are using it for worship services. (They don’t have a concrete floor at the moment but that is nothing in a rural village.) They were in the midst of a 40 day prayer and fasting period. The church members were encouraged to fast in the morning and afternoon, and, if possible, attend church for a two and a half hour period of prayer and worship between 5:00 to 7:30pm before going home to eat. I went to a couple of the sessions and there were over 200 people at each of them. 

 I have added this photo of our worship times. These people worship as if they really believe that they are; “forgiven of their sins, have a relationship with God their Father, are filled with the Holy Spirit, experience the reality of ‘life to the full’ (John 10:10), as well as the assurance that they will go to heaven when they die.” They undoubtedly know the “mind blowing reality” of Jesus and the Holy Spirit.

I thought you may be fascinated by this photo from Kabarore. It shows a spiritual form of home security.

 Now for the next two months. I fly out of Sydney on 18 February for a week in Bangladesh and then across to Nepal for another week. My time in Bangladesh will be with the Evangelical Friends. I love this group and this will be my second visit to them. I do ask for your prayers. Apparently the country is in political turmoil. The Australian Government advice is “to exercise a high degree of caution overall in Bangladesh due to the uncertain political and security situation.” Pray for safety and especially that the conference will go ahead.

 The second week will be with Pastor Nabin in Surkhet, Nepal. This church belongs to the National Churches Fellowship of Nepal (NCFN) – a movement of around 1600 indigenously planted churches – and we expect pastors to attend from various areas in the Mid Western Region. Both the Bangladesh Friends and the church in Surkhet are growing through conversion growth. Most of it comes as a result of healings and other signs and wonders. Over the years I have become more and more challenged by what Paul wrote about his approach to ministry: “I will not venture to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me in leading the Gentiles to obey God by what I have said and done– by the power of signs and miracles, through the power of the Spirit.” (Rom.15:18-19). I want to work with churches who believe in this approach and both of these groups operate in this manner. Trying to minister without “signs and miracles, through the power of the Spirit” is like a boxer who tries to fight with one hand tied behind his back.

 I thank you again for your prayers and financial support.

 Every Blessing,

John

General

Previous post: Christmas Greetings 2014 & church growth in Iraq

Next post: Move of the Spirit in Bangladesh April 2015