Kigeme Diocese in the community

K igeme Diocese operates its activities in community of four Districts: Nyamagabe, Nyaruguru, Nyanza and Huye of the southern province of Rwanda. To fullfill its vision “to be a Church that glorifies God and blesses the nations,” Kigeme Diocese has put in place different departments. One of them is Department of planning and development.
Planning and Development department works in community by participating in holistic development in making systematic accompaniments. Kigeme Diocese participates in community work in arm with other partners. It works through different programs such as Saving and credit Program, Food Security Program, Environmental protection program, Health mums Program, promoting Justice and reconciliation, Fourteen projects supported by Compassion International, among others.

Saving and Credit Program aims at developing community through putting people in saving and credit associations. In this program, people save money and offer loans among them to run small businesses. In their saving associations they are given different trainings for sustainable holistic development. Currently, the program counts more than 1280 saving associations with over 16000 members.
Church facilitators located in each parish have been trained to take care of saving associations day today.
Through Food Security Program, EAR Kigeme Diocese promotes food security in community through trainings about agricultural process, animal feeding, milk production and milk safety, diseases prevention and environmental protection process. There are para-veterinary workers who are based in community and look after domestic animals. Kigeme Diocese owns Milk Collection Center (MCC) that helps local community to access pasteurized milk.
Kigeme Diocese also is active member of District Joint Action Forum (DJAF). In last open-day (accoutability day) of activities 2017-2018 Kigeme won 3rd place of best exhibitor.

Gahini Anglican Diocese gets new bishop

Manasseh Gahima is the new bishop of Gahini Anglican Diocese, following his enthronement on Sunday to replace long serving Bishop Alexis Bilindabagabo

Bilindabagabo had led the diocese since its creation 22 years ago

Gahima, 49, was consecrated bishop on May 28, 2017 in Kayonza District and has since been serving as Bilindabagabo’s assistant.

He took over the reigns at the historically renowned diocese on Sunday in a ceremony attended by national leaders, including cabinet ministers, senators and heads of different parastatals, among others.

The event, which was presided over by Archbishop Laurent Mbanda, attracted thousands of Christians including senior leaders of the Anglican community in Rwanda, and clerics from East African countries, Australia, and USA, among others.

“Now that we have turned a new chapter, we expect renewed effort to continue advancing the diocese under new leadership,” Mbanda said, congratulating Bilindabagabo, whose shoes he said would be difficult to fill.

He, however, urged the new prelate to make use of his experience serving in the same diocese, saying that the congregation and, generally, the people in the jurisdiction of the diocese looked up to him.

“We are not required to be completely the same as the ones we replace,” Mbanda said, adding that everyone has their style of leadership but the result is what counts.

At a personal level, he said he knows the new bishop as a person who delivers.

“Be strong and courageous, count on God to lead your way, remember that God already promised that He is with you,” he said, making reference to biblical story of Joshua, who was replacing Moses, on the role of leading Israelis back to the Promised Land.

He said Gahima should use the values of Joshua such as bravery, integrity, and following God’s guidance to get His flock to the Promised Land.

In his speech, Gahima said that he is always humbled whenever called upon to serve the Lord.

“I always take time to reflect if really I act as a servant of God and every time I reflect, it sort of renews my commitment and determination to deliver for the people I am entrusted to lead on behalf of God,” he said.

The incoming bishop announced that he will maintain a programme dubbed “Tubashake”, established by his predecessor, as an outreach programme where the clergy go to the community instead of the members of community coming to them.

Gahima also promised to sustain efforts to champion development in the region, saying that spiritual growth should go in tandem with general development of families, community and the nation at large.

“We will encourage our Christians to participate in different government programmes like Umuganda, Umugoroba w’Ababyeyi and mediators’ committees (Abunzi) to promote Rwandan values and national development,” he said.

The Minister for Local Government, Prof. Anastase Shyaka, appreciated the continued partnership between religious organisations and government in the development of the population.

He particularly thanked the Anglican Church for their role in the development of sectors like education and health.

“We appreciate that in these 25 years after the Genocide against the Tutsi, the Anglican Church has been a dependable partner in rebuilding and transforming our country.

“On behalf of President Paul Kagame, I want to commend Bishop Bilindabagabo for successfully discharging his responsibilities in the last 22 years as leader of Gahini Diocese,” he said.

Who is Gahima?

Manasseh Gahima was born on December 19, 1970. He is married to Rose Gahima with whom they have eight children.

From 1995 to 1997, he was the deputy headmaster in charge of Anglophone studies at Lycée de Kigali.

In 1997, he became bourgmestre of former Karangazi Commune, which is part of today’s Nyagatare District, and from 2004 to 2005, he became the bourgmestre of former Gabiro Commune.

Subsequently, Gahima dedicated himself to Anglican Church. He now has a doctorate in theological studies.

About the Diocese

One of the 11 dioceses of the Anglican Church in Rwanda, Gahini Diocese sits on Gahini hill and has 59 parishes and 280 sub-parishes.

It serves an estimated 100,000 Christians in the districts of Nyagatare, Gatsibo and Kayonza in Eastern Province.

It is in Gahini, that in 1926, Reverend Halord Guillebaud baptised the first converts in Rwanda and started translating Christian literature in Kinyarwanda.

Gahini hill was declared a Regional Revival Heritage Centre in February 2017. The centre is undergoing redevelopment.

The Rwanda Anglican Mission movement established its first station at Gahini in 1925 and grew through the revivals of the 1930s and 1940s, spreading across the globe.

Anglican Church ordains new Bishop for Kigali

The newly ordained Bishop of the Anglican Diocese of Kigali, Rev. Nathan Amooti Rusengo, has said that he will put emphasis on the use of digital platforms in evangelism as he sets sight on endearing the gospel towards the urban youth.

Officially ordained yesterday by fellow bishops, Rusengo replaces the long-serving, Louis Muvunyi, who has been Bishop of Kigali for about nine years.
Muvunyi relinquished his position following a request from fellow bishops who requested him to pursue a PhD after which he will head a new theology school that the church plans to set up in about four years.
Rusengo has been serving as the bishop of Cyangugu Diocese. He is not new to the Kigali Diocese having served as a pastor as well as a secretary in the Diocese before he moved to Cyangugu.

The enthronement ceremony involved prayers for the new bishop by Christians, as well as vows from him that he will serve in reverence of The Lord.

Speaking after his enthronement, Rusengo highlighted the need to stream the gospel through various digital platforms to be able to reach different urban audiences.

“I will pay attention to urban evangelism. You see Kigali is changing, and not Kigali alone but Rwanda as a country. Things change one by one, little by little,” he said. “Roads are changing, houses are changing and (the use of) technology has increased which means that the way we used to approach people with the gospel needs to change. We need to learn to speak to people via WhatsApp and YouTube. We need to think for a way how we can change evangelism to reach these urban populations.”

The bishop echoed the need for positive changes in the church’s infrastructure,

“There are some church facilities that don’t glorify God. We need to upgrade them. If you (Christians) have upgraded your own houses, why don’t we upgrade the house of God?”

Rusengo also stressed that he will work on the education of pastors.

Outgoing Bishop Louis Muvunyi thanked Christians and pastors of Kigali Diocese for standing with him and his family for the time of his service.

“When I became a pastor, I didn’t know that I would be a bishop but God made me one in a surprising and pleasing way,” he said.

Kigali Diocese is one of the 11 Dioceses of Anglican Church of Rwanda. It has six Archdeaconries with 41 parishes, 192 local churches.

The Diocese operates in three districts of Kigali city—Nyarugenge, Kicukiro and Gasabo as well as two districts of Eastern Province—Rwamagana, Bugesera. This is in addition to Rulindo and Gakenke districts in the Northern Province.

editor@newtimesrwanda.com