Wednesday, April 10
For many years, European partners of the Presbyterian Church in Rwanda (EPR) provided financial support for EPR pastors’ salaries. But this practice ended several years ago. Now local EPR congregations are struggling to support their pastors. Rev. Prince Karangwa, presbytery executive, and Mr. Desire Nibagwire, an EPR development specialist, are working to address this situation in Kirinda Presbytery, in central Rwanda, by helping Christians develop income-generating activities.
Through their efforts, Mrs. Judith Karmayanja has found a way to support her family. Judith, a widow with seven children between the ages of 5 and 25, is now president of COPEVANEMU, a 52-member craft cooperative. The idea was developed during a brainstorming meeting Rev. Prince and Mr. Desire held with representatives of congregations in Kirinda Presbytery. When it became clear that a group of women wanted to pursue the idea, the two linked the group with craft professionals, who provided training and connected them with a private organization that linked the cooperative to international marketing channels.
Judith and her colleagues use the money they earn to purchase food and clothing for their families, to meet their healthcare needs, and to support the church. As president, Judith has also developed management skills, having taken on important marketing and communication responsibilities. Through the experience of belonging to the cooperative, she has learned how much God loves her, and she has reached out in love to her colleagues.
—Elder Nancy Collins, PC(USA) regional liaison for East Central Africa
Let us join in prayer for:
Presbyterian Church in Rwanda (EPR): Rev. Dr. Elisee Musemakweli, president, Rev. Dr. Pascal Bataringaya, vice president, Mr. Eustache Musabyimana, finance manager
Presbytery Partnership: Presbytery of Kiskiminetas, with the EPR
Let us pray
God of creation and redemption, bless those who are working in Rwanda to strengthen widows and children. May your Holy Spirit continue to inspire and guide those who lead the ECR in their important kingdom work. Amen.