Rural DRC is literally still evolving and the church often is the only agency in the jungles of DRC. In Aru as an example, the village of Isoro is 600kms from the diocesan headquarters and is reached only by driving and walking through jungle tracks for many days.
DRC has been affected by violence for over 100 years, from Belgian colonisation through to the present time. From the 1990s there were two major Congo Wars (1996-97 and 1998-2003: the Great African War) resulting in an estimated 5.4M deaths
A crisis or vacuum of authority exists in the post colonial Congolese society and church. The collapse of authority has resulted in confusion, disorder and breakdown of social, political and economic structures, violence, rebellions and millions of deaths. The crisis requires the church to recognise its prophetic role facilitating a moment of truth as in South Africa. Through Jesus, God has inaugurated a just new world order. The proclamation of the good news must thus address the situation of crisis with directness as did old testament prophets.
The Anglican Church in the Congo is a major provider of health, social and education services in the rural areas where it operates. The history of conflict in DRC over the last 100 years has left the people and the country devastated. Even today across many areas there is fighting and killing over power. In addition with nine countries bordering DRC, there have been external armed forces which have caused conflict by entering the borders of our country.
Diocese of Aru College
Aru is situated in the North-East corner of the DRC and is primarily a rural area with a variety of different tribes, mostly involved with agriculture and raising animals. The majority of Church leaders in the area have not completed secondary school and few have undertaken any studies.
Anglican Aid supports the tutition costs for students, health care and living costs. The Diocese of Aru is training up to19 prospective leaders for US$14,000 annually- less than a bachelor degree here in Australia. The diocese is only 13 years old and has grown in that time from 13 to 34 parishes. These parishes have a total of 301 congregations, most of which have lay leaders, who provide support to church operated schools, health clinics and other community development programs. Lay leaders are selected and enrolled in the three year full time program and on graduation spend a year as undertaking practical training under an ordained minister.
Diocese of Bukavu Ministry Training
The Diocese of Bukavu in partnership with Anglican Aid is training community leaders with the knowledge and skills they need to lead support their communities. Due to war and political instability in the DRC (Congo), there is a need for communities to come together reconciling inter-tribal conflicts and working together to build a nation with over 100 years of genocide and violence. In response, the Diocese of Bukavu trains 45 students at Training Colleges in Bangwe, Bukavu and Rutshuru. These training courses involve intensive one month studies on topics followed by three months practical training in parishes. The training takes place over two years.
Berea College Kindu
In partnership with the Diocese of Kindu, Anglican Aid is helping to prepare men and women to be equipped for leadership in their communities. Berea College trains students in literacy, pastoral care as well as how to understand how the Bible applies to their social and community contexts. It seeks to raise the level of education and to ensure that future leaders and church workers are well equipped to lead the church and its health and education programs.
The school runs a three year course that provides students with practical community leadership skills and enables them to become proficient community leaders. Students also leave the school equipped with the ability to earn a living by working in a trade such as sewing or building.
All donations to this project are tax deductible.
ABN 28 525 237 517
Anglican Aid’s general fund applies all donations received to this or similar projects.
- Pray for the church in Aru and for leadership that can relieve the current pastors, many of whom care for over ten congregations.
- Pray for the 45 students who are being trained in ministry that they will faithfully come back and serve within the Diocese of Bukavu.
- Pray for Berea Bible College and the faithful teaching of God's word.
- Pray for Bishop Andy Titre who oversees the Aru Diocese.
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