Author Archives: Johnny

CMAGRAL 2018 – Discovering God’s mission in our context

August 25-30, 2018; Rwanda will host CMAGRAL, a mission conference that brings together evangelical students and graduates from Rwanda, Burundi, and Eastern DRC. CMAGRAL was premiered in July 2008 and this year it is the 6th edition under the theme “Discovering God’s mission in our context.”

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In this CMAGRAL 2018, Bible Exposition will be from the book of Jonah to discover God’s missionary heart from Eden to eternity. The exposition will be done by a team of three speakers from Burundi, Cote d’Ivoire and Mauritius.  Plenary sessions will cover misunderstandings of missions, the motive, the message, and the need for missions in the great lakes. Workshops will cover different topics including: partnership; international student ministry; cross-cultural evangelism; Christian response to violence; scripture engagement; family, studies, church and missions.

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CMAGRAL is also a special time to meet students and graduates from different areas, campus and countries make new connections, exchange experiences and testimonies and discuss issues that we face in our local groups.

What can you do now?

As a student or a graduate planning to attend, hurry up and register to secure your place. Registration in done online following this link: https://goo.gl/forms/J9p8pmGxHNfr9dPw1 After you have secured your place, you will need to pay the registration fees (5,000 RWF or 5 USD for students and 10,000 RWF or 10 USD for graduates) and the conference fees (10,000 RWF or 15 USD for students and 20,000 RWF or 20 USD for graduates). All fees are paid through your GBU or National office.

As an organization you can contact the coordinator to support the conference and gain a post to promote your ministry to the participants. We are expecting around 150 students and graduates from Rwanda, Burundi, DRC, Cote d’ Ivoire, Mauritius and Benin.

Do not forget to share this article with your friends and family. You may not attend but you can help someone else to attend either by sharing the information or paying for him/her.

For more details please contact the conference coordinator
Mr. Theoneste Nzogiroshya
Phone: +250 788 771 576
Email: ntheo83@gmail.com

Equipping student leaders for the work of ministry

In the weekend of 2-4th February, GBUR organized a national leadership training. It brought together 45 selected GBU leaders from all over the country. The theme was “to equip the saints for the work of ministry.”

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In this training student leaders were helped to better understand different aspects of GBUR ministry as an evangelical, interdenominational, and para-church movement. Among the topics covered are GBUR faith statements, principles of action, profile of an agent of Godly transformation as stated in our vision, and the basics of Christian leadership.

 

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In small groups, students were given opportunity to discuss the challenges they face in engaging the university with gospel and the strategies to overcome those challenges.

 

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Judith Uwanziga, vice president of GBU-IPRC-Kigali, when asked three new things she has learned in this training she said: “First, GBU history, it made me realize the value of GBU and what it costed for those who founded this ministry. Second, the continuity of this ministry after the campus, I thought once I finish the college it is over. But now, I know better, I am even going to be mobilizing others that this ministry does not end with our campus time. Third, servant leadership, I thought I just had to fulfill my task on the action plan, but I never considered get involved with the life of members to just serve them. But, now I know that that is the right thing to do since you cannot lead someone without knowing his/her problem. I am there to serve them not for them to serve me.” Asked if her expectations were met, she answered: “Yes, I wanted to know the core values of GBU, its beliefs, how it come to happen and how I can lead in that context. And, all of that was covered. Thank God.”

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To the participants, the organizing team, and all of you our esteemed partners; May the Lord bless you!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

God’s faithfulness in a changing University

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With the start of the academic year 2017-2018, the University of Rwanda, the only public and the largest, announced the shifting of its schools and colleges to new campuses. Students in the same college or school were to study in the same campus. This implied the closing of some campuses, as well as the shift of students from one campus to another.

The implication to GBUR

For the closed campus, it meant the closure of GBU. While for the remaining campuses, it meant the loss of members as they shift to other campuses and the gain of new members as they join these campuses. These changes led to the closing of GBU in 5 campuses of University of Rwanda namely: Nyamishaba, Byumba, Kibungo, Rubilizi, and Nyagatare Nursing & Midwifery.

God’s faithfulness

Considering these changes, GBUR was concerned with the continuity and stability of student ministry. But, God in his faithfulness has sustained his work.

Theoneste, the student ministry coordinator says: “We are grateful to God. In his faithfulness, he had sustained the ministry. In amidst of these changes, Students from the closed GBUs managed to join GBU in their new campuses. And, we could see a great sense of ownership of the ministry by students. In some campuses, everyone could be new at this campus, yet students managed to seek one another and get together for a fellowship.”

Onesphore, a campus staff, added: ” while we were in a meeting, one student who was new at the campus, asked: ‘how can a GBU exist without Discipleship?’, and the leader answered ‘what is that Discipleship thing you keep talking about and what can it take to get one here?’ It was so amazing to see how students with different background sharpened one another. I would say that these changes tore down some strongholds that would have taken years.”

Challenges and prayer request

The reallocation of students in different campuses come with challenges to both students at the campus and the whole GBUR as a student ministry in General. Here is what you can pray for:

  • Integration: some students are yet to integrate in GBU at their new campuses
  • A heart for the lost: for students to keep reaching their fellow students instead of just enjoying the fellowship
  • GBUR: to keep up with the changes in the education system of Rwanda

Student Ministry Impact -Testimony of Onesphore

I am Onesphore Hakizimana a graduate from UR-Nyagatare campus, College of Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine (CAVM). In my final year, I felt God calling me to serve him in student ministry. I was scared because I thought to work for GBUR one has to be perfect whom I was not. I was struggling with time management and there were many things which I could hardly understand how they fit in the Christian life. However, Joining STEM was an opportunity for me to be firmly established as a disciple.

My first time at the campus

September 2016, I went back to the campus not as a student but as a GBUR campus staff.  I was passionate but with no idea where to start. I didn’t know how to plan and I couldn’t imagine what I was going to be doing with all the hours in the day while students are in class.  However, the dilemma didn’t last for long, few days later, what I thought was much time couldn’t be enough for all that needed to be done. I had to learn to plan and prioritize.

The Lord at work in me and through me

This year, I experienced the Godly transformation we dream of in me and the students around me. Through consistent and meaningful morning devotions, God dealt with every one of my confusions. Preparing and facilitating different trainings put me in a position where I could doubly enjoy the life transforming truth shared in them. Seeing students’ lives being transformed through GBU activities helped me to better understand the great commission and GBUR ministry as its application. I thank the Lord, in my financial struggles, he taught me what it means to live by faith; and He has been faithful to provide for me even through ways I couldn’t expect.

Conclusion

With this year spent in STEM, I have learned to trust and obey God. I no longer ask for many confirmations in order to do what God wants me to do, all I ask, is how I can fit in.  Where God leads he provides. I have also learnt that what Jesus needs is not for people to know many things about him but rather to live everything by him and for him. Considering the work among students, I have prayerfully committed myself for another year in STEM program. Finally, I thank all my partners and GBUR staff for their support in this last year. God Bless You.

Facilitating a training at UR-Nyagatare

Facilitating a Disciple makers training at UR-Nyagatare

Attending leadership training at GBUR office

Attending leadership training at GBUR office

With Students at UR-Nyagatare

With Students at UR-Nyagatare

 

Equipping student leaders for the work of ministry

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Based on Ephesians 4:12 “to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ”, from Friday 9th to Sunday 11th June, 2017 GBUR has organized a leadership training bringing together leaders in GBU from all over the country to equip them with biblical leadership skills and principles that shape their character into leaders who model servant leadership in the steps of Christ.

This training was organized with a twofold objective: to bring GBU leaders from all over the country together so that they may know, learn from, and encourage each other, as they come to a common understanding of the ministry they serve in; and to equip GBU leaders with Biblical truth that shape they character as leaders. In his opening remarks, General secretary Samson Rukundo, he congratulated GBU leaders who made it to the conference and reaffirmed GBUR office’s commitment to student ministry, “We exist for you” he said.

In closing remarks, Mr. Albert Mabasi, chairman of GBUR, thanked both the staff that organized the training and congratulated participants who made it to the last day of the training. He also challenged student leaders to keep good partnership with the office, “all they ask you in administration like reporting, planning and communication are only means to help us help you, please respect them, they made a huge sacrifice being here for you” He added.

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Students Testimonies

Idufashe Eddy from GBU-UR-Huye

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What helped me most is to understand the ministry I am serving in and its purpose. They explained deeply, but I was touched by the session on Biblical leadership and the one on Agent of Godly Transformation (AGT) profile, because if you are to build a house and you know what it should be like, it helps to know what kind of foundations to set or the kind of bricks to use. In AGT they taught us three elements that make an Agent of Godly Transformation:  we learned that (1) he/she has to be rooted in scriptures, not only those I am leading but I myself have first to live as an AGT and for that I have to be rooted in scripture. (2) he /she has to have integrity on the market place. (3) he/she has to be involved in mission, we have learned that God’s heart is for all nations to know the gospel.  They told us that we have to go from being believers to being disciples so even myself I have to be a disciple of Christ. They also told us that in GBU mission is not one of many things we do but the great commission (making disciples of all nations Matt 28:19) is the center of everything we do. We have to reach out to people at the campus. Briefly I realized that if you understand AGT profile well, you understand GBU ministry, considering the fact that it is also the core of our vision.  Thus me to I will keep seeking to be a good agent of Godly transformation.

Niyibizi Odille from GBU-UR-Nyamishaba

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This training helped me so much, because you cannot lead people while you yourself don’t understand where to go or what to do. But what we learned here help us, especially the study in the book of Titus, it created in us the ability to know as a leader how to live, how to conduct ourselves so that even those we are leading can take example to us. Personally, what I liked most is the process used in Manuscript Bible Study: Observation, Interpretation and Application. Here I realized that most of the time we only do observation and interpretation but ignore application. From this I have realized that the reason why we are always studying the bible yet seeing no impact, it is because we heed less attention to application. From this training I have learned how to do a SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time bound) so that as a leader I can not only do it myself but also teach those I am leading.

GBUR commemorated the genocide against the Tutsi

God protected us so that today we may testify that he is all powerful” these are the words of Mr. Michel Kayitaba a genocide survivor who delivered the word of God in the genocide commemoration event organized by GBUR  on Friday May 26, to remember its members who died in the genocide perpetrated against Tutsi in 1994. GBUR, Groupe Biblique Universitaire du Rwanda, is an interdenominational and autonomous Christian organization which is affiliated to the international Fellowship of Evangelical Students (IFES). It gathers Christian students and graduates from high learning institutions29

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GBUR’s evening to remember was organized for the fourth time. It is organized to pay tribute to GBUR members who were killed during the 1994 genocide perpetrated against Tutsi, most of whom were killed together with members of their families, to equip GBUR members with biblical principles against genocide ideology and divisionism, and to comfort the survivors of genocide; Reflecting on their lives and their inheritance to GBUR ministry.

The genocide against Tutsi took many of founding members of GBUR. GBUR had started only 10 years earlier in 1984. This event was marked by the sharing of testimonies from those who have lived closely with the victims to whom GBUR is paying tribute. “From this man, I have learnt what it means to put into practice what I learn from the Bible.” said Mr. Francois sharing about Mr. Kitoko Thomas one of the victims remembered.

In his speech, Mr. Albert Mabasi, the chairman of GBUR, after comforting genocide survivors and thanking God for a safe country and good leadership that give equal chances to all Rwandans. He emphasized the vision of GBUR which is “to see every student and graduate being and agent of Godly transformation in church and society” he said:

GBUR is not affiliated to neither religion nor political party, I emphasize this to our members, so that we recognize our identity, Bible is our basis, and the transformation we are to bring is not on intellectual basis or moral basis but rather the word of God. Francois has tackled on it, in the testimony of the late Thomas, saying that he told him ‘it was time to put into practice the word of God they had learnt.’ In GBUR we fight against Genocide ideology and any sort of divisionism, and healing and reconciliation is part of our discipleship program. For our members to heal from historical wounds.”

In this evening, Mr. Athanase Nsengiyumva an envoy of CNLG, the National commission for the fight against Genocide, delivered a message, about genocide, genocide ideology, those who deny the genocide and a message for genocide survivors.   “We are not survivors because we were better than those who died; it’s the grace of the Almighty, but a great responsibility too. To be a genocide survivor is a sign that there is a special mission that God wants you to accomplish before you die. Do you know that mission? If you really know it, how are you working to accomplish it? I request survivors not to ignore their lives, to redeem the time, and live.” He added.

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Article By: Mporebuke Noel

I have came to discover that Discipleship is a command

Emmy-Murwanashyaka

My name is MURWANASHYAKA Emmy. I am a member of GBU in UNIVERSITY OF RWANDA Nyagatare campus. On March 4, 2017 we had ‘DISCIPLEMAKERS TRAINING’ with Silvas, a missionary from Kenya, as a member of GBU, I attended the training and from this training, after we red Matthew 28:19-20 where Jesus has given a command to ‘go and make disciples and teaching them to obey what he commanded us’. I have came to discover that “Discipleship is a command” which means that as a born again, if I am not discipling anyone, I am sinning against God. This made me realize how I have been sinning because I didn’t disciple anyone but now I know I have to start up.

I have also come to realize the fact that there is a cost of discipleship, after having a free salvation, discipleship cost, and every christian should be ready to endure that cost. Another thing is that discipleship and evangelism are not just exposing scriptures to someone but rather sharing with him or her the life you live as a Christian.

Praise the lord for the impact the training had on us.

Testimony, First step in reaching and discipling people with disabilities

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My name is Enos TUMUSIME, a member of GBU in UNIVERSITY OF RWANDA Nyagatare campus. On March 12, 2017 we had a seminar on ‘ HOW TO REACH PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES’ by Erin Powell.

Before this seminar, I was considering people with disability as those who were created to perish because I was thinking that it is not necessary to preach to them because I considered them as if they can’t even receive Christ due to their abnormalities, but I thank God  that through Erin’s teaching, He opened my eyes to this people. I have come to discover how much God loves them. They are also created in God’s image, and for a purpose in his love. As much as I struggle to reach others with the gospel, I should also consider people with disabilities because Christ died for them too.

We Christians should look for every possible way to reach out to those people with disabilities in much the same way we reach other people, even more because most of the time these ones are rejected by the society, unfortunately even by Christians or church leadership. But I thank God opening my eyes to see his plan and love upon people with disability. May God help me to reach them as I reach others. I do encourage my fellow Christians to consider people with disabilities as they do with other people. Bless You!

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GBUR Thanksgiving and Commissioning ceremony

“This is a great day, to thank God for what he has done both for GBUR as a ministry and to myself for what the Lord did in my life personally.” G.S. Samson Rukundo 

Sunday 26th February 2017, at ULK (independent university of Kigali) Gisozi campus, All members, friends and partners of GBUR ministry come together, in a thanksgiving and commissioning ceremony, to celebrate God’s faithfulness in sustaining the ministry, and to commission the new general secretary and elected committees.

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This celebration, brought together many people whose life have been at some point touched by GBUR ministry; students -members of GBU in their campus, graduates -friends of GBU, church leaders, leaders of Christian NGOs, and many other partners in the gospel from all over the country.

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Mr. Lauson Munganyizi, a student, president of GBU-UR-Huye and chairman of NASEC (National Students Executive Committee). With joy, he testifies to the fact that he himself is a beneficiary of what GBUR ministry is doing in different campuses. “With GBUR ministry, students are trained to know and relate with Christ on a personal level” he said, “This starts with the unexpected warm welcome offered to first year students on their first day at campus, with love and great joy GBU members help these new students to find their way around the campus, and at the same occasion sharing with them the good news of Jesus; The reached are equipped via different program among which discipleship groups that we enjoy so much although they are yet to reach all campuses  due to a limited number of staff” He added.

In light with 1Samuel 16:1-12, Pastor Mathew the preacher of the day, used the illustration of ordainment of David on Israel throne to remind undergraduates that campus is the best place for them to be trained in spiritual matters. He also thanked all leaders in GBUR ministry, especially the General Secretary, for accepting the call to this ministry and reminded that the ministry in campuses is a ministry of laying a foundation, always done in a secret and demanding a lot of precision, thus the need to serve with a righteous heart. Mathew also reminded, graduates not to forget the foundation they were raised and support the ministry. To church leaders he said “it is your responsibility to invest in students’ ministry because the church is the main beneficiary of this ministry”

Apostle Joshua Masasu, who led the commissioning prayer, testified that Rukundo Samson, the commissioned general secretary, has been a faithful member of the local church with important responsibilities. “But when, I heard of his call to serve in GBUR, I release him because I believe in him” he added.

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After the prayer, General Secretary Samson said “In my term, I feel God is calling me to put an emphasis on strengthening the collaboration with local church leaders” and the chairman Mr. Albert Mabasi concluded by thanking everyone for accepting the invitation and their partnership in students ministry. He also promised the new general secretary a reliable collaboration and support from the board.

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Article by Noel Mporebuke

GBUR God’s Faithfulness in 2016

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“Depend on it. God’s work done in God’s way will never lack God’s supply. He is too wise a God to frustrate His purposes for lack of funds, and He can just as easily supply them ahead of time as afterwards, and He much prefers doing so.”-James Hudson Taylor

Reflecting on the year 2016 already left behind us, these words of Hudson Taylor  a 19th-century pioneering missionary to inland China kept coming to my mind and I can see how true these words had proved to be in GBUR ministry in 2016. The year 2016 in GBUR, wasn’t marked by any so called “big event” such as national conference or other, yet God continued to sustain His ministry in more critical times. 2016 was a year of establishing new leadership in almost all aspect of GBUR ministry.

In the beginning, a general assembly elected a new board council also known as National Executive committee (NEC) and this committee’s number one job was to find a new General secretary (GS); Because, after the resignation of the GS previously commissioned Mrs. Alice MUGENI, Mr. MABASI Albert who have been acting as GS had now been elected the chairman of NEC.

After more than 6 months of prayer and hard work, a new General secretary was approved by the general assembly on October 2nd, Mr. RUKUNDO Samson with a contract of 5 years renewable. In this general assembly the chairman of graduates committee emphasized on the need to elect a new graduates committee which got elected two months later with Mr. SUGIRA Vincent as chairman.

Apart from the new leadership, GBUR is also thankful for his provision in all other aspects of ministry, such as students who have come to Christ as their Lord and savior, those who are going through different discipleship program and our members who have joined the field reaching the unreached mainly Mr. Noblesse RUHUMURIZA currently reaching out the Laarim people of South Sudan and Ms. Ebenezer NDAMUKUNDA also working in South Sudan. We are also thankful for the equipping of our leaders through international conference such as YLG2016 which our vice chairman and students ministry coordinator attended and the panaf2016 for our students ministry coordinator.

To these and many more that cannot be listed in this single article, we say as Samuel in chapter 7 on verse 12 “Up to here the Lord helped us“.

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From left) Chairman MABASI Albert, General Secretary RUKUNDO Samson, Graduates Committee chairman SUGIRA Vincent