A YES TO THE LORD OF HARVEST – By Gillian G.Edube
Te challenge to hear and obey God’s voice runs through the bible, it did not come only to Abraham, Moses and the prophets but it continues right through into New Testament and right to this day. Jesus appears to his disciples and gives them a command Mathew 28: 19-20 “ Therefore go and make disciples of all nations baptizing them in the name of the of the father and of the son and of the holy spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always to the very end of age”. All of us have a responsibility towards fulfilling the Great commission; If he is our Lord then we need to accept his authority and Lordship over our lives. We must recognize our one commander in chief and his objectives; we must coordinate our efforts across national, denominational and organizational boundaries and respond to his call. Reaching nations will require a level of interaction which has been uncommon in missions. There are still thousands people who are not reached and unless the church is willing to extend her witness beyond her own culture they will not be reached. In the large Muslim Hindu and Buddhist blocs especially there are hundreds of people groups with very few believers. Statistics show that there is still an imbalance in the sending of workers to these needy groups. His command remains Go! Go! Make disciples of all nations. This command is for all Christians not just some, the question is not whether missions is for me or whether missions have a part in my ministry but rather what is my part in missions because I am a believer? It’s a matter of asking God for his directions in his missions now.
The Ignite 2018 missions convention which happened from the 30th April to 5th of May at Uganda Christian University Mukono was a place where we gathered to seek to understand the call for missions. This convention placed special emphasis on the place of the Church in Africa Global Missions. If the testimonies of those who attended the convention is anything to go by, then it is clear that at every plenary session and every seminar the voice of the Lord was heard clearly and the rallying call seemed to suggest Africa arise take your place – the harvest is plentiful behold oh Africa bring out your sheaves and the reap the harvest for the your Lord!! Questions like who should go? how should we go? where is the harvest? These question were raised and answered!
Spurred on by the expositions from Luke by Rev. Peter Oyugi of AIM, challenged by the series on The Church in African in Global Missions by Brother Buti Sam Kputu of CARPRO and inspired by testimonies of Missionaries sent from Ethiopia to other parts of the world – we were reminded not only of the urgency of the missions task but also of the need to make the necessary sacrifices that will ensure that a large force of laborers will be going out from Africa to the rest of the world!
We organize a mission’s convention dabbed “IGNITE” every three years in partnership with the like minded Christian ministries and churches, with a focus on envisioning, mobilization for Christian missions in Africa, and information sharing on current trends and issues in Missions for greater missions’ involvement in Africa and beyond.
Warm greetings to you in Christ our Lord! I trust that you are well.
A very special thank you from The IGNITE 2015 Planning Committee and Global Link Afrika goes out to all those who made it for the IGNITE 2015 MISSIONS CONVENTION FUND RAISING Dinner at Namirembe Guest house 26th June 2015. Your presence at this dinner was not only a source of encouragement for us but also fully demonstrated your commitment to the cause of the Gospel.
As the convention draws even closer we urge you to continue to pray for God’s leading and provision, we are still a long way from meeting the convention budget. We would encourage you to tell others about the convention and pray that many would be available to come and attend.
Pray also for all the convention facilitators that the Lord would use them to cause great impact. Our deep desire is that as a body of Christ in Africa we are moved to carry forward the message of the Gospel, IGNITE Missions Convention is one of those things we are doing stir movement in this direction.
Thanks to all you friends for your partnership in the Gospel!
May God Bless You!
THE IGNITE 2015 MISSIONS CONVENTION ENTERS THE FIRST
Here is the article that featured in our GLA Newsletter about this even….
In response to mission mobilization needs in Africa, Global Link Afrika (GLA) in partnership with many other religious organizations organized IGNITE 2015 Missions Convention to champion church mobilization in Africa for global transformation. The main goal of the IGNITE 2015 Missions Convention was to mobilize, Equip and network the Church for effective involvement in Global mission and holistic community transformation. Derrick Wandera takes us through what happened there.
The 16th of August started with ecstasy as all roads and paths lead to Lweza Training and Conference Center, a place found just a few kilometers away from Kampala capital city along Entebbe road. Everybody’s face beamed with anticipation upon arrival at the venue to have a piece of the IGNITE 2015 MISSIONS CONVENTION. The long awaited day was here and everybody hurried to take position and have their share of the package from the various speakers.
IGNITE 2015 Missions Convention was organized by Global Link Afrika (GLA) in conjunction with Biblica Uganda, World Venture, Africa Inland Mission (AIM) and Africa Center for Apologetics Research (ACFAR), with the aim of mobilizing, equipping and networking the Church for effective involvement in Global mission and holistic community transformation and it ran under the theme “Reconciling all things to God through Christ” Colossians 1:20.
The Convention sought to challenge the Church in Uganda and Africa to embrace the task of Global Missions in recognition of the enormous growth of Christianity in the continent and to this end all the facilitators labored. Rev. Alan Purser of the Crosslink UK lead the convention every morning in the reflecting on the Mission of Jesus, The Mission of the Disciples and The Mission of the Church as gave expositions from John’s gospel. Participant commenting on Rev. Allan Purser’s exposition stated “ this had been an eye opener for me – I have clearly seen the single thread that ties the mission of the Jesus, the disciples mission to our own mission today.” I have been greatly challenged to continue in the work of preaching the gospel and not just settle for doing good things for people as important as that might be – Allan clearly challenged me here,” he adds.
Dancun Olumbe of Mission Together Africa reminded us of this one fundamental, “God has called the Church to go from everywhere, including Africa and Uganda, to everywhere.” He continued to say that the continent that for long had been referred to as a ‘dark continent’ can now poise with the greatest rate of growth in Christianity. He however noted that this Convention will should serve to awaken the sleeping giants- the African Church- to boldly confront the myriads of challenges it faces in fulfilling its mandate in the great commission.
The convention attracted 141 participants, mostly pastors, church leaders and Para-church ministers, bringing together people from a diversity of ethnic and denominational backgrounds! “This is a landmark in the history of missions in this country, in gathering all of us from all over you have made history” remarked one of the ministers. For all the people it was the perfect opportunity to meet and closely interact with people from a denomination and a country other their own around the question of missions.
“I have enjoyed this whole event,” says an exuberant Rev. Can. Newton Baryaija. “I will never forget the nice food, the inspirational and educative speakers. It is hard to believe that this is the first Missions Convention GLA is running.” In as much as a the participants at the event were kept occupied, they were also assured of relaxation, lots of freshments and very splendid meals, indeed all the people felt at home! Shily Denis Opus lead the Convention in music and worship with typical African flavor and exuberance, a thing that stood out among many of the participants at the Convention.
“This is a dream come true,” marks Gillian Edube, one of the chief organizers of the event. “This was first discussed 3 years ago and seeing it happening today is just breath taking. Many things happen but this fundamental one gives me reason to thank God for His faithfulness.” She says. Depicting the good organization and arrangement was the well-organized hall with nit purple and white covering the chairs and tables, so auspicious! The director of missions at Global Link Afrika had to thank all those that had put their hands together to bring this dream into reality. Gillian points the major challenge they faced while organizing the convention being the funds. ”Putting together the funds to see this even happen today has been so challenging” she says. However she points the other challenges to having the speakers confirm in time and while others declined towards the final stages which caused a bit of panic but thank God many finally confirmed.
Pr. Denis Kilama of Lugogo Baptist Church and one of the plenary speakers observes that where as a tremendous number of Christians desires to go out for missions; there is a big hunger for knowledge about missions. “And the question has always been,” he says, “can I serve as a missionary without any form of education?” This is the question that Ugandans need to tackle because there are not many schools (if any) that have come out to teach missions and a few that have done so, just have missions as a topic. An idea Pr. Kiama Denis thinks should be revised.
The convention offered very many learning opportunities this included the plenary sessions, the seminars, tracks and the bible studies that were conducted every morning in small groups. These pastors and other religious leaders were challenged to “Is this how we should be leading in our churches?” One pastor was heard asking a friend. “I think we are on the wrong channel, we need to change the whole approach to the gospel. Thank God I came for this convention,”
Many of the pastors and other church leaders demanded that such trainings be taken to their churches such that their members would also get it from the horse’s mouth. However they all accepted to take the message back home though they thought they would not deliver to the fullest.
Catch a glimpse of your plenary speakers at the event, (IGNITE 2015 MISSIONS CONVENTION)
1. Main Expositor
Rev.Alan Purser -United Kingdom
Alan is an Anglican minister who works with Crosslinks, a mission organisation based in the UK. Crosslinks came out of the Church Missionary Society (CMS). Crosslinks currently provides assistance to mission partners and gospel projects based in Uganda and provides financial assistance to students studying for theological qualifications in Uganda. Alan has served as a mission partner in South Africa, as a church vicar in the UK and is currently involved in working with churches and individuals in the UK to establish their support and partnership for mission partners serving all over the world. Alan is married to Anne and they have two children, Louise and Nicola, and one grandson called Luke.
1.The Theme Exposition
BP.JOEL OBETIA- Uganda
Bishop Joel Samson Obetia was born in a Christian family to a Lay Reader dad and mum and came to know the Lord in the thick of the Liberation War in Uganda on 1st December 1979.
Bishop Obetia earned a Bachelor of Divinity Degree (Hons) from Bishop Tucker Theological College Mukono and then later obtained a Master of Arts Degree in Mission and Ministry from St John’s, Nottingham University and a Doctor of Philosophy Degree in Anthropological Theology from Oxford Centre for Mission Studies/Leeds University, United Kingdom.
Dr. Obetia worked with Campus Crusade for Christ (LIFE Ministry) in both Kenya and Uganda, 1981—1991. He taught at Uganda Christian University (UCU) in Practical Theology from 2002—2005 and is currently the Chairman of the University Council. He became the Bishop of Madi and West Nile Diocese from 2005 to date. He will make 10 years as Bishop on 27th November 2015 and will retire as Bishop next year, 2016, at the age of 59 to do other Ministries as the Lord will guide till takeoff time to be with the Lord.
He is married to Rev. Can. Joy AbiaObetia for the last 28 years and they are blessed with 5 children, two boys, now adults, and three girls, one of whom finished University in July. The other two girls are 14 and 10.2
2.The great commission- a Priority for the church-
Canon. ISAAC ANGUYO- Uganda
Isaac Anguyo is a founding member and Executive Director of Here is Life, an organization that seeks to enable each person to live a whole and integrated life for which he or she has been created. Their focus is to work through health services, radio, education, economic programmes and social services to share the love of Jesus Christ mainly but not limited to with the Aringa of Yumbe District who are about 80% Muslim.
Isaac has a background in education (Primary School Teacher and Teacher Trainer), he has served and is serving in several local, national and international boards. He has further studied and developed skills in Media and Communications with a specialization in Electronic Media. His desire is to touch the lives of his community with the love of God which gave rise to the development of the organization Here is Life.
Recognizing his gifts and skills and contribution to the church, Isaac has been honored with the title of Canon by Ma’di West Nile Diocese. Isaac is married to Sally and they have two sons, two daughters and eleven grandchildren.
3. Analysis of Missions in Uganda-
Dr. JULIUS TWONGEIRWE- Uganda
Dr. Julius D. Twongyeirwe has been in pastoral ministry for 21 years. He now serves as the pastor of Berea Baptist Church in Kampala. He is married to Grace and they have four children. By the grace God Julius has had no other occupation but a direct engagement in Christian ministry since he came to faith in Christ 30 years ago. A graduate of Daystar University in Nairobi Kenya and an alumnus of the Cornhill Training Course for biblical preachers (London UK), Julius also holds a Masters in Divinity (2006) and a Doctorate in Intercultural Studies (2013 Portland, Oregon USA).
He has taught at several Bible and Theological institutions in Uganda and founded the Proclamation Task (PT) in 1999, an arrangement directed to pastoral training. He is also co-founder of the Uganda Evangelical Mission Association (UEMA) set up for missionary training and deploying. Julius serves as Secretary General for the Africa Missions Association (AfMA) and Vice Chancellor (Academic Affairs) of the World Link University which operates through mission training centers in South America, Africa and Asia.
He has served as a board member for several Christian organizations in Uganda and his passion to teach God’s word keeps him on the pulpit and takes him many places within and outside Uganda to declare the beauty of God and his excellent purposes for mankind. By loved ones around him, Julius is cordially referred to as “Pastor Two”.
4.Leadership for effective Missions
International Uganda as Senior Partnership Facilitator. He is responsible for overseeing and building the capacity of fifteen local church partnerships in the Kisoro area, to implement holistic child development at their Child Development Centers. For four years, Nicholas led the Compassion International Uganda Leadership Development Program. The Leadership Development Program is focused on Training, Educating and 12 Discipling servant leaders, among university students in universities, across Uganda. Before Joining Compassion International, he served with the Fellowship of Christian Unions (FOCUS) Uganda as Training Secretary and Missions Coordinator. Nicholas possesses knowledge and skills in leadership development, south development, partnership management and Bible teaching. Nicholas holds a Bachelors of Arts with Education, from Makerere University, a Post-Graduate Diploma in Development Studies; Project Planning and Management from Mbarara University of Science and Technology and a Master of Arts Degree in Intercultural Studies, from Wheaton College Graduate School in Wheaton Illinois, USA. Nicholas is a founding Board member of Global Link Africa (GLA), and is currently serving as the Board Chairman. Nicholas worships at, and is part of the leadership team at, The City Church – Luzira Community Church, under the Leadership of Pastor Alex Mutagubya.
Nicholas is married to Sylvia K. Kalyebara and they have three children; two girls and a boy.
5. The local church serving as a sender
Duncan Olumbe is the Executive Director of Mission Together Africa (MTA), which does mission mobilization and training for both local and international groups. He is actively involved in global mission where he serves as a member of the International Councils of Interserve and of World Evangelical Alliance Mission Commission, co-Chair of Future of Mission Task Force, a member of Emerging Leaders Network of Movement for African Initiatives (MANI), and of Lausanne Younger Leader’s Gathering Selection Committee. He has been a keynote speaker in several mission events including FOCUS Kenya’s Commission, Lausanne Cape Town 2010 Congress, Global Mission Consultation among others. Previously Duncan served as a FOCUS Kenya staff for nine years, six of which as Missions Director and one as a missionary among International Students in Oxford, UK. He has also served as Interim National Director of Finnish The Task (FTT) and a member of the Mission Mobilization Task Force where he was one of the key researchers in the soon-to-be-published book “Mission in Motion”. Mr. Olumbe is also involved in training of Kenyan missionaries through KwaMataifa (Kenya To The Nations) network and in mentoring upcoming younger Kenyan mission leaders. Currently he is passionately exploring how we can resource mission from Africa by Africans and how to embrace Creation Care Mission through environmental engagement such as Farming God’s Way. He is a missiologist by calling, previously trained as a Mechanical Engineer. He is currently pursuing a Masters in Mission and Leadership from the UK. Duncan is married to Roseline (lecturer at Daystar University) and they have three sons.
- The place of the Local Church in Community Transformation.
Rev. GARY SKINNER-Canada/Uganda
Gary Skinner is the Team Leader of Watoto Ministries including the Watoto Church, which he founded together with his wife Marilyn in 1983 in the heart of Uganda’s war torn capital, Kampala. Watoto Church is a cell based, community church with over 24,000 people gathering each weekend to celebrate Christ In 1994, Gary and Marilyn founded Watoto Child Care Ministries, an international organisation as a compassionate response to the cry of Africa’s millions of children orphaned as a result of HIV/AIDS. Currently they are caring for almost 3,000 Ugandan children in Watoto villages where every child is raised in a family setting rather than an institution. In addition to championing the cause of the orphaned child, Watoto is committed to restoring dignity to HIV+ women, left to bear the brunt of AIDS, war and social injustice. Almost 3,000 women have experienced an improved quality of life through Watoto’s Living Hope. Gary is committed to replicating the Watoto holistic model throughout Africa, He travels internationally as an advocate for the local church, inspiring people all around the world to stop ‘doing’ church and start ‘being’ the church. Gary was born in Zimbabwe to missionary parents and is a fourth generation preacher. Gary has pastored in Canada, in Zambia, and in Uganda. He is a father of three children and grandfather of four.
- Money and Missions
Chris serves as the National Director for Biblica Uganda, an International organisation that seeks to promote biblical literacy through Bible translation, publishing and Scripture engagement with a mission to transform lives through God’s Word. He is passionate about the nurture and development of local and indigenous mission initiatives and faithful teaching and preaching of God’s Word. To this end, he devotes time and energy in training and capacity building for local churches and organizations and strengthening governance for both church and parachurch organizations. 20 Mr. Yikii serves on several regional and local boards including: Global Link Afrika; Uganda Christian Action Network; Evangelical Fellowship of Uganda; Uganda Jubilee Network; Association of Evangelicals in AfricaRelief and Development Commission; Diocesan Missions Board- Ma’di and WestNile Diocese; and East Africa Bible Expositors Fellowship. Chris is an Alumnus of the Institute for National Transformation, (INT) Executive Leadership Training Institute and also serves as a Faculty member of the Institute for National Transformation-(INT Uganda). Chris has an initial background in Business Administration and Chartered Marketing of the CIM, U.K and possesses additional skills in Bible Translation, project management and organizational development and governance, Bible exposition and International Marketing. He is married to Jane and have three daughters Hephzibah, Hannah and Faith.
- Mission to people with special needs
SAMUEL OPOLOT- Uganda
Samuel is the Team Leader of Global Link Afrika. He has a background in Education. Samuel has a great passion for Faithful Bible Handling and Missions. He is therefore greatly involved in Bible Study and Bible Exposition Training through Living Word Uganda and Langham Preaching Uganda. 22 He has previously served in various capacities with the International Fellowship of Evangelical Students (IFES) Movement in Uganda, affiliated to Fellowship of Christian Unions (FOCUS) including as the acting General Secretary. Samuel is married to Alice Opolot and they have two children.
- Growing an Effective Indigenous Ministry
Peter is the founding pastor of Gaba Community Church and the founder and president of Africa Renewal Ministries. He graduated from East Africa School of Theology and has travelled to more than 15 nations teaching leaders as well as preaching the Gospel. Peter is known for his passion for developing leaders, a service he does with passion through his weekly TV program on LTV known as the Excellent Life as well as the annual outreaches to Uganda’s many universities. His greatest love is to help and encourage upcoming leaders. Peter is married with four children. He and his wife, Irene, have ministered together at Gaba since they got married in 1994, and through their ministry God has blessed the work of Gaba Community Church in their local community just outside Kampala as well as throughout Uganda. Peter’s passion is to raise Christian leaders in Africa, with a passionate love for God, and a burden to transform Africa spiritually, socially and economically.
11. Answering God’s Call
Dr. Kilama Dennis is married to Yvonne Kilama and together they have two sons, Nelson and Noel. Currently he serves as the Senior Pastor Lugogo Baptist Church where he was brought up in the Sunday school as the church began. He also serves as the Quality Assurance Director, Africa Renewal University. He was involved in FOCUS as a STEM staff, this was the turning point in his call to the ministry. Since STEM he has not turned back and has desired to engage in missions, proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ. He is passionate about Missions and has engaged in various cultural missions. He holds a B.SWSA (MUK), M.A (NEGST) and D.Min (AIU).