Dear Prayer Partner,

In October our Bible-a-Month calendar is focusing on Rwanda.

Rwanda is an African country which boarders Burundi, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Tanzania and Uganda.

Rwanda is known as "the Land of a Thousand Hills" and has a vast array of wildlife. Over 60% of Rwanda's parliament are women and it is also a global leader in caring for the environment.

All COVID-19 has had a serious impact on Bible projects in Rwanda, with many projects having to be suspended for the time being.

In this Extra Insight we'll share an update from the Bible Society of Rwanda and how they are breaking down the stigma of HIV/AIDS through Biblical teaching.

Rwanda

Capital: Kigali

Population: 12,712,431 (July 2020 est.)

Official language: Kinyarwanda and French

Religion: Protestant 50%, Roman Catholic 44%, Muslim 2%, other 4% (2012 est.)

Statistics and map taken from The World Factbook and Operation World.

Ministry in Rwanda

Rwanda has a troubled history. Many of us will remember the horrifying stories of the genocide in 1994 when over the course of 100 days it is estimated that up to 1 million people lost their lives. Many more were injured and displaced from their homes. Today the Bible Society of Rwanda is involved with churches, other Faith based organisations and the government to promote values of unity and reconciliation. They want to see lives transformed through God’s Word.

The work of the Bible Society of Rwanda focuses on Bible distribution, Faith Comes by Hearing (Audio Bibles project), Trauma Healing (helping to heal the wounds of trauma with the Bible), Literacy projects and work to reach young people with God’s Word.

Covid-19 has impacted the Bible Society of Rwanda on many levels – financially they have seen a huge drop in income from Bible sales, they have had to adapt their projects to fit in with social distancing and the other impacts of Covid-19. The pandemic has created a real fear of death within Rwandan society creating feelings of uncertainty and hopelessness across communities. The Bible Society of Rwanda want to be able to speak into these situations by bringing God’s truth and hope through the Bible.
The "Good Samaritan" Project - Rwanda
Roughly 2.5% of the total population in Rwanda is HIV positive. It is a heavily stigmatised disease, and many people believe that it is a punishment from God.

The Bible Society of Rwanda hopes to change this attitude and also help those who have been greatly impacted by this disease. The “Good Samaritan” project reaches out to those who are affected by the disease and seeks to breakdown social stigmas around it. Based on the parable of the Good Samaritan, this programme challenges perceptions of HIV and AIDS. It teaches Biblical compassion to those affected, as well as how to prevent the transmission of the disease.

Through the course every participant is given a Bible to allow them to read for themselves what the Bible says about compassion and loving one another. This project has had a great impact on many people who have been marginalised by society due to their diagnosis. 

One woman who has lived with each HIV for 15 years told the Bible Society how the Good Samaritan project had impacted her life:
 
“……. I am a mother of 4 children. I knew my HIV status in 2005; the family pushed me out from my house, and I did not find peace anywhere. After 2 or 3 years, I heard that there is a group of people which help people infected and it was the Good Samaritan group. They gave me a Bible from Bible Society of Rwanda, when I opened it I read Isaiah 41:10 which helped me a lot. It gives me hope…….”
 
Recently, the COVID-19 pandemic has meant that the Good Samaritan groups haven’t been able to meet in person. The Bible Society of Rwanda values your continued prayers as they try to raise awareness of this disease without being able to meet in person. They're excited to resume the groups as soon as it is safe for them to do so.
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest”

Matthew 11:28 (NIV)
Pray for this Project:

  • Pray for all those who participate in the Good Samaritan project. Pray that God would help those who live with this diagnosis and that they would be blessed through this ministry.

  • Pray that there will be enough resources to implement this project and they would be able to facilitate all those who want to partake in the project.

  • Pray for the COVID-19 situation in Rwanda. Pray that God would protect the Bible Society staff and volunteers as well as those who are at a higher risk due to their pre-existing illness.
Give

Every £5 donated to this project will help the Bible Society of Rwanda to raise awareness of HIV/AIDS and provide Scripture to those who need it most.

Make a donation online now.

This project is our Bible-a-Month project for October. By becoming a Bible-a-Month partner you will help to provide Scripture to people all over the world every month. You will receive a free calendar with information about this and 11 other Bible Society projects. Commit to giving just £5 each month and you will ensure that the Word of God is shared across the world. Sign up here.

More from Bible Society NI:
BIBLE SOCIETY NI
27 Howard Street, Belfast, BT1 6NB
028 9032 6577 Charity Reg. No. NIC102557

Header image shows children receiving a Bible from the Bible Society of Rwanda.
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