What I Saw in Rwanda

After 11 years and much pleading from the pastors, CMM has now made our first visit to Rwanda. I wasn’t expecting so many things to be different than Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania, but Rwanda is so different than the rest of East Africa.

It is known as the land of 1,000 hills. The terrain is beautiful and the capital city Kigali is built on several hills. It is breathtaking.

This picture was shot outside the church where we held the regional meeting.

Also, Kigali is known as the cleanest and safest city in the world. And to top it off, they drive on the right hand side of the road and the steering wheel in the cars are in the correct place!

We have never been welcomed to a place like we were at Kigali. We were met by a delegation of about 15 pastors and leaders and to top if off I was given a large bouquet of flowers. We were then in a small motorcade to the Serena Hotel where we were received and introduced to our hosting team and then shared about our vision for the meetings.

Over the past few conferences we have had a delegation of pastors (15-20) at each conference. Each time they have met with us and practically begged us to bring our teachings to their country. I did not realize just how much it was costing these pastors in time and money to attend a conference. I asked them about coming to CMM and found out it takes 2 full days of travel by bus. Also, they have to overnight on the way (hotel costs) and of course food and drink. Their costs just to get to CMM is approximately 15,000/=KSH or $170.00. Then there is the cost for the conference, 2,000/=KSH or $23.00. (We are working on how we can scholarship the Rwandas since it costs so much for them to attend). I anticipate several more from there since our regional meeting and a good number are wanting to attend the marriage conference next July.

You can see why they wanted us to come to them as the average pastor cannot afford to make such an expensive trip. They also pressured us to open a CMM office in Kigali. They also want us to return at least once a year for regional meetings.

To say that it was easy to preach and teach is an understatement. They pulled it out of us (Pastor Chola also spoke). They asked on the first day if we could take questions at some point. When we did, the rest of the time was taken answering questions to the point where we were hustling to make our flight back to Kenya.

Thanks again to those who gave extra so that we could provide lunch both days for these pastors. Food is very expensive as Rwanda is land locked and depends heavily on imports. It is also more expensive due to travel costs. However, due to your help, we were able to provide a full buffet both days. It looked like a buffet at the uptown hotels. I have never seen plates of food piled so high. I wish you could have seen it for yourself.

Then to top everything off, two pastors made the trip from Burundi (neighboring country), a day’s journey, to talk to us about coming to Burundi. They were representatives of a large pastor’s fellowship and have promised hundreds of leaders if we will come. So next year…Burundi.

After we go to Burundi, then we will have held regional meetings in all five of the East African nations. This was part of our original vision and is nearing fulfillment.

Again, thanks for all your prayers and support.

Ronnie and Debbie

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