Tuesday, September 2, 2014

CBM Team Meetings in Africa

Meeting with the Canadian Baptist Ministries (CBM) 
Kenya team in Nairobi, Kenya 

This past week, Erica and I had the joy of meeting with our Canadian and national field staff in both Rwanda and Kenya. The longer we serve in Africa, we appreciate the fact that CBM and our partner churches are more than people with a mission, but people on a mission. Day by day, our colleagues and partners are living out holistic faith in community: strengthening local churches in participating in the transforming work of hope and healing through their words and their deeds.

Each of our colleagues are working in different areas of focus within our ministry partnerships. Over the next few months, we are planning on featuring a short interview with each of our team members to help you get a wider picture of the work of Canadian Baptist Ministries in Africa. We are very much aware that the ministries that we are apart of are directly connected to our friends and supporting churches in Canada. We are on this journey together!


In Nairobi, we shared a great day yesterday with our colleagues Ruth Munyao, Pauline Kariuki, and Wayne & Maureen Morgan. In the words of Pauline, “We are very thankful for God’s care and protection.” The security situation in Kenya has reminded us of the importance of supporting and caring for one another.

In Prayer
Please pray for the work of the Guardians of Hope (GOH) with the ACC&S and ABC churches in Kenya. As we celebrate the tenth anniversary of the Guardians of Hope, there are three important new areas that you can be praying for:
(1) In October, the Kenyan GOH leaders will be travelling with Erica to Addis, Ethiopia to participate in training on “Gender and Human Rights in HIV and AIDS Education”. This will be the first step in a deliberate move increase the intentionality and effectiveness of the GOH in addressing gender and inequity issues in combatting the spread of HIV and AIDS, as well as in the support of people living positively with HIV.

(2) This November will be the launch of a new initiative to enhance the pycho-social support within the groups. Our key GOH leaders from Kenya and Rwanda will be introduced to the "Groups of Hope" approach developed by our colleague Faith Holwyn 

(3) Kamp Tumaini is an exciting new initiative of the Kenyan GOH projects. For the next three summers, orphans and vulnerable children within the GOH groups will be attending a summer camp program designed to share God’s love and support as Kenyan and Canadian volunteers provide mentorship and encouragement. Please pray for wisdom in the selection of volunteer camp counsellors and leaders as we receive applications for the camps.

Please also remember our team in your prayers. You can follow along with the Morgans through their blog at www.morgansinkenya.blogspot.com


In Kigali, we spent several days with our new colleagues Jonathan and Janice Mills, their son Robert, and the CBM Rwanda team, including Andre Sibomana, and Darrell & Laura Lee Bustin.

The Mills family have found a rental home are beginning to settle in very well.  Robert has started school and mom and dad are beginning to master driving on the steep and often narrow roads of Rwanda.

The Bustins, who have also just returned from Canadian home assignment, are in their last four months of part-time language study, and very involved in theological education, evangelism, and short term missions in Rwanda.

You can follow along with the Mills on their journey with CBM in Africa through their blog at www.cbmmills.blogspot.com and the Bustin family through their blog at www.bustininsfrica.blogspot.com

Janice Mills and Erica in Kigai, Rwanda
In Prayer
Please remember the Mills family as they begin their life and ministry in Rwanda. We are praying that their family will continue to feel at home and settled in Kigali, and that they will enjoy deepening relationships with our ministry partners and colleagues. Both Jonathan and Janice bring wonderful spirits of compassion and inclusion. We are so thankful to God for the blessing of new friends and colleagues.

We pray for Darrell and pastor Nathan’s work in helping the Rwandan Association of Baptist Churches (AEBR) in strengthening its ministries of discipleship and church growth. Please remember them over the coming months as they work on integrating a community evangelism program called “E3" into the over all outreach ministries of the AEBR. We are very excited for the prospect of a AEBR/CBM/E3 partnership and short term mission project in 2015.

Please join us in praying for the AEBR as it works with the Rwandan Education Board in assessing its secondary schools and teacher professional development programming. This is an area of the ministry of the AEBR that CBM has invested in over the past five years. We are prayerfully walking with the AEBR in the discernment of the next chapter of this important ministry.

Meeting with the CBM Rwanda team in Kigali

Monday, August 18, 2014

CBM Africa Team: William Wako

William serves with Canadian Baptist Ministries
in the area of conservation agriculture
 and sustainable community development in Kenya

In the Autumn of 2011, the Canadian Baptist Ministries’ Africa team began an assessment of our work in Kenya’s North Eastern Province that led to a pivotal change in our approach to ministry in this region. One of the major shifts was to strengthen food security through the introduction of arid land conservation farming practices. 

For almost three years, our colleague William Wako has been leading this important initiative. Today there are six committed local churches that are investing their time and resources to demonstrate conservation agriculture practices to their wider community, and use their experience to assist several local Muslim villages in the establishment and strengthening of sustainable farms. Together they are turning the desert into a garden!

This month, we are excited to share with you part of a brief interview we had with William earlier this year. We hope that you will join us in praying for William, his wife Mary, and the great ministry that they are a part of.

"In my ministry life I am excited by serving and loving God through helping the needy and mending the broken heart through the compassionate ministry. 

My ministry passion and motivation is shaped by my personal experience in the mission field and the spiritual gift of Christian service. At the completion of high school, I worked for missionaries that I met during my school time. I joined this team of missionaries and helped them in interpreting the local language and translating some Bible study materials, for about three years. 

It is during this period that the Lord confirmed by vocation. Specifically, I feel God has gifted me in the area of Christian service. I prayed about this and told my parents, this was the hardest bit of my journey of faith for I faced a lot of resistance, rejection and resentment. I was despised, insulted and rejected even by my own family members because of choosing to be Christian minister. All in all I thank God for giving me courage and endurance through all this. 

Today, I can testify that whenever God calls for His service he will provide.

The model of Jesus Christ ministry among the poor and disadvantaged, motivates me to love and serve the Lord. The Bible passages of Matthew 22:37 ‘’Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind’’ and Psalm 37:3-4 ‘’Trust in the Lord and do good; dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture. Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart’’  encourages me to persist in the Lord and understand the joy of serving in God’s vineyard, because the Lord is my portion. 

In 2011, I became a student intern with Canadian Baptist Ministries (CBM). This led to me joining the team as a project officer in food security. One of the joys of serving with CBM among the Muslim communities of Garissa is the integral mission approach that I never learnt in theological school. 

Although I read and heard sermons on Jesus’ compassionate ministry, it is only after joining CBM that I fully realized the truth about empowering the poor. Serving the poor did not only give me opportunity to physically invest in their lives, but makes it possible for me to build mutual relationships.  It is within these relationships that I can naturally share the good news of Jesus Christ. In addition, God has blessed me with the spiritual gift of Christian service and works of compassion that go hand in hand with CBM’s style of ministry.

I am very thankful for the flexibility of our organization that one is allowed to be creative and innovative in terms ways of witness and development helps me in the contextualization of the Christian message of God’s love for all people. We are always looking for ways to do things better.

Serving in Garissa also has enormous challenges right from harsh climatic condition to hostility and rampant insecurity cases. For about three years now Kenyan Christians have been targeted by extremists who have been attacking Christian places of worship and business. This has created fear and tension among peace loving Christians and Muslims living in Garissa. We need to pray for peace and for the safety of the people who live and work in this area.

Indeed God is at work among the communities we are serving. It is absolutely, God’s work that we are able to venture to local communities with our little empowerment projects and have not been rejected anywhere we go. Many other big organisation with big funding have been rejected by same communities but whoever minor projects we have remained long friends with Muslim communities of Garissa.

Similarly, God is at work in our ministry because, it is through our service that two rival community of rich Somali and poor Waliwana embrace one another and live in harmony. It is doings of the Lord that Garissa churches that have been there for decades now for first time visit local communities, share training facilities and even mentors one another in some are of our project.

I will appreciate the prayers of Canadian Baptist Churches for my family and ministry among the Muslim communities. That God will keep encouraging and equipping us for the sound and relevant ministry in this ever changing world.

Secondly, your prayers for peace and security for myself and my family as we serve the lord in the conflict prone Northern area of Kenya. As young family we have many aspiration in serving the Lord and we will appreciate your prayers for God to give us His direction. We are expecting a child towards the end of this year and my wife is also pursuing education in area of her interest.

Please remember us in your prayers that we have good health and strength, particularly this time that my wife is expectant and yet a student.

Also your prayers for our elderly parents will be appreciated and both Mary and I come from Christian family but in both of our families we have close relatives who do not acknowledged Jesus Christ, please pray with us for their salvation.”

She Matters


"At least two-thirds of uneducated children in the world today are girls. Without access to educational opportunities, she is at a higher risk to become marginalized and exploited. Canadian Baptist Ministries believes that gender bias in education is a social injustice. We desire to see all children have the opportunity to learn and thrive. Help provide innovative programming where girls are given equal opportunity to develop their gifts and abilities. Help them reach their full, God-given potential."

You can learn more about Canadian Baptist Ministries’ new annual appeal by visiting cbmin.org/get-involved/campaigns/she-matters/

She Matters - Fall 2014 from CBM on Vimeo.

Monday, August 11, 2014

The Self Help Group Approach

We are excited to share a recent update video by our friends, and fellow CBM colleagues, Wayne and Maureen Morgan who are spear-heading Self Help Group ministries in the urban outreach of our partner church, the ACC&S, in Nairobi, Kenya.

Dandora Self Help Groups.5 Aug 8, 2014 from Wayne Morgan on Vimeo.