Monday, June 2, 2014

East Africa church leaders gather for faith and hope renewal at PEARL OF AFRICA


Uganda is commonly reffered as the "Pearl of Africa".Its a landlocked country in the northern shores of lake Victoria. Its most famous for being the source of River Nile that serves Sudan, Kenya and Northe Africa. It has strong culure which has been preserved for generation thrrough King Mutesa, Kabaka and the famous Buganda kingdom. At the invitation of AMG-Uganda our paths met at Kampala for the remarkable conference.

Uganda has the largest percentage of professed Christians of any nation in Africa.Uganda is known for being a spiritually rich country in East and Central Africa. And this can be traced back to 1877 when the Church Missionary Society through the invitation of British explorer Henry Stanley deployed the missionary to serve Mutesa,  and Kabaka(king) of Buganda. Uganda serves as host to the famous engendered mountainous gorilla.

It has the Martyrs shrines which serves as reminder of how costly did the 22 young men had to pay for their salvation.They choose to obey their Savior than mere kings of the earth.They are commemorated June 3rd every year for their courage, honesty and allegiance to their saviour even to death.
And it was so refreshing and encouraging to join pastors and other church leaders from east Africa region for this exception conference whose theme was” If you have seen me, You have seen the father”. 
In small groups we were united together with common concern, common faith and common savior and a deeper desire to further the establishment of God’s kingdom through in-depth biblical studies and conversation of who God is and the significance of Him as the father in our lives. In the picture is me, Casey(USA) and Pst Solomon that we have been working together in nomadic ministries.

I had an opportunity to visit the graveyard for these martyrs and my heart was broken apart as locals narrate to us how these men of courage chose death over life and indeed God’s kingdom has come again and it was time for deeper reflection on the issues of persecution, suffering and pain. 
We had plenary sessions where we engage and seek to grow our own understanding of God as the Alpha and Omega during the conference in Kampala. It was insightful to have the speakers dialogue in heart to heart conversation.

And what a beauty and significance again to be in Uganda-the home and origin of the East-Africa revival movement which reignited the region in 1936. The revival produced deep desire for spiritual transformation of countries such as Zaire, Tanzania and Kenya among others

One of the graves that struck me was that one of first Anglican Bishop James Hannington of the Church of Uganda. He was killed on October 1885 and true to his faith in Christ he chose to die so that Uganda can have opportunity to be liberated from all evils for through the blood of Our savior Jesus Christ.

While on a visit to his grave in Namirembe Cathedral these words “Tell the Kabaka that I die for Uganda” in described on his grave tell its all. This was followed by the other martyrs. 

The king(Mwanga) became increasingly uncomfortable when he realized that some of his servants were putting their loyalty to Christ and pay little to the traditional royalty and unfortunately on 3rd June 1886 he ordered the killing of twenty six of his servants-thirteen Anglicans and twelve Catholics.

And to hundreds of us this was just a memorable moment that brings back the memories of these men who demonstrated courage, sacrifice for what they firmly believed and testimony of a fight faithfully fought even unto lake of fire.


The retired Bishop Dr Edward Muhima of the Church of Uganda who is not only leading community and church figure in Uganda and East Africa but a very symbol of simplicity and humility emphasized during the conference that we must have faith to believe God’s word, truth in what is written and humility in understanding both that God is and can be known.



A very remarkable and God fearing servant alluded that indeed God IS and HE may be KNOWN. From my years as a student of theology- I would have expected a person of his caliber to be very philosophical and complicated in the presentation of his sermon. The Rtd Bishop taught with much humility and clarity. Our understanding of God as ALPHA and OMEGA continues to provide moral strength and courage even in the face of challenges that are enormous in the service to God and Humanity 

We were blessed at the conference to hear profound teachings and preaching from other notable men of God from Uganda and beyond.  There were seminars on the Righteousness of God, the Just and loving God, the place of our family and the concept of all powerful and creator God. 
And throughout the plenary session I struggled with equating these amazing attributes of God with historical realities and current challenges facing Christians globally.My heart and head were challenged and i saw the sovereignty of God as creator, righteous who will punish sin justly.
Carl Willis who was one of the invited speakers amazed us at how God is not just the creator of heaven and earth but also the All Powerful God.He emphasized on His love and righteousness. 

This conference brought together church leaders from East-Africa for a time of fellowship and sharing. We relearn again and again, we relate to each other in the spirit of togetherness and rest for spiritual renewal and transformation.


And after the end of week conference it was clear from faces of church leaders that indeed we came alongside to share our faith, our deepest concern, our hopes, our suffering, our victory and tremendous stories of courage and resilience in the ministry. 

I saw Jesus Christ and I was satisfied that indeed I have met with a loving. Just, all powerful, alpha and omega God as described in his word. We renew our energy and passion for evangelism and intentional discipleship of the African-Church and beyond. I now return back to the ministry of serving the nomads with new energy and insgights learned from that gathering of church leaders from East Africa and beyond