Scholarships for Presbyterian Students at the Protestant Institute of Arts and Social Sciences - May 2019 Update
We greet you in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. The Outreach Foundation is committed to helping equip the global church with capable leaders, particularly in areas like Rwanda where the church is growing. Our partner there, the Presbyterian Church in Rwanda (EPR for the French name “Eglise Presbyterienne au Rwanda”), needs trained pastors for their many young and vibrant congregations. In recent years, Outreach and partners have helped train five pastors who graduated from the theology department at PIASS and are now leaders of EPR congregations. There are currently twelve Presbyterian students sponsored by The Outreach Foundation in the theology program. This update includes stories from several of these students who are studying at PIASS thanks to your generous gifts.
Before enrolling at PIASS, Alphonse Ngendahimana studied Mission and Evangelism at the Lay Training Center in Kenya. This center is part of the Booth Africa Mission (BAM), a program sponsored through The Outreach Foundation. Those courses helped Alphonse minister at the parish where he served for two years before going to PIASS for further studies in theology. He is now a second-year student and his favorite subject is Introduction to the New Testament. Alphonse writes: “One impressive thing in this course is the study of the life of Paul and his mission. It moves my heart to reflect on Paul's conversion, and how he greatly devoted his life to Christ's ministry.” Alphonse wants to make Paul a role model in his calling. He is grateful for The Outreach Foundation and partners for the opportunity to improve his knowledge at PIASS.
Elimerch Ufitumufasha is in awe of what God has done in his life. He is in his second year of studies and has also benefited from attending the BAM evangelistic programs in Kenya. History of Religion and Systematic Theology are his favorite subjects. Elimerch knows how deeply Christianity differs from other religions. This knowledge has increased his faith and will greatly help in his ministry.
Solange Nyiranzobe, a first-year student, praises God for what he is doing in her life. She appreciates Outreach for the gift of education and for supporting her. Through the Pastoral Care and Counseling course, she hopes to acquire more skills to help her know how to reconcile people who have conflicts. As a future pastor, this knowledge will be important for helping members of her congregation who are in need.
For Innocent Iyamuremye, also a first-year student who is married and blessed with one child, there are many courses including Pastoral Care and Counseling which are equipping him with the knowledge of how to tackle complex situations. The Rwandan church deals with many issues in the aftermath of the genocide against Tutsi in 1994. Every year in Rwanda, those who died during the genocide are remembered. During that time many people experience post-traumatic stress (PTSD). A pastor must be equipped to encounter and overcome these situations for a congregation to move forward. Innocent is grateful for the support of The Outreach Foundation.
Narcisse Uzarama gives thanks to God because of what he has done for him. Narcisse is married and has two sons. He did well his first year and is now in his second year. His favorite subjects are Church History, History of Religions, and Introduction to the New Testament. After learning about the struggles of the early church, Narcisse is determined to stay firm in his faith; to clearly explain the Gospel to his future parishioners and to fight heresies.
The EPR has more than 300,000 members and is composed of seven autonomous presbyteries located all around the country. There is an office of the General Synod, which acts as the headquarters of the church, in Kigali. The Head Office oversees most of the administration and organization of the church. Like other institutions in Rwanda, the 1994 genocide affected the church which lost sixteen of its pastors and many members. Since the genocide, much emphasis has been placed on training the younger generation in peacebuilding and reconciliation, but the church also faces the challenge of caring for many orphans and widows, most of whom still suffer from trauma. This helps explain why more pastor training is needed to sustain the church growth and why a subject like Pastoral Care and Counseling has a big impact on the life of EPR congregations.
We are grateful for your generous support. The Church in Rwanda demonstrates amazing hospitality and welcomes partner teams.
In Christ’s service,
Read more about Scholarships for Presbyterian Students at PIASS HERE.
The Outreach Foundation is seeking scholarships for $2,000 per year for a minimum of seven Presbyterian students at the Protestant Institute of Arts and Social Sciences. Make a gift HERE or by sending a check to our office.