Population: 11.2 million (2012)
Official languages: English, Kinyarwanda
Major religion: Christianity
IFES movement: Groupe Biblique Universitaire du Rwanda (GBUR)
War and genocide in 1994 left Rwanda in ruins, with 1 million dead and 2 million in exile. Christians in Rwanda make up almost 90% of the population. In the 90s, the church in Rwanda lost its moral authority because many church leaders were implicated in the genocide and victims died in churches where they expected safety. Since then, churches have played a major role in the reconciliation process and their reputation is gradually recovering.
- present in 28 higher education institutions (out of 40)
- around 2300 GBUR students in 30 groups
- 6 full-time staff, 20 part-time volunteers
- graduates ministry: 120 in 8 groups
- largest group of students, 390 (University of Rwanda, Remera campus)
- smallest students, 17 (University of Rwanda, Kibungo campus)
GBUR rejoices to see students developing a passion for Bible study and engaging with their universities, especially in the area of reconciliation and healing. They thank the Lord for the many new graduates who join the ministry as volunteers and part-time ministers to disciple students. They are active and committed, providing 70% of the movement’s funds.
GBUR has involved the local church in their ministry of healing and reconciliation. Some churches have started thinking beyond their church boundaries and even beyond Rwanda. Some are ready to send mission teams; others ask the movement for help to train their members on missions; still others financially support mission activities or events. Awareness about missions is spreading.
View from the inside
Alice Mugeni, former General Secretary of GBUR, is convinced of the key role of the ministry.‘Students determine the future, reaching to them is actually reaching to the nations! They are very dynamic and energetic and can bring about any revolution when convinced enough.
Colossians 1:28-29 summarizes the mission of GBUR: ‘We proclaim him, admonishing and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone perfect in Christ.’
- that the Lord will inspire students with new and relevant strategies to evangelism and discipleship for the new generation;
- for young graduates to always see themselves as agents of godly transformation in the marketplace, families, church and society.