‘ABIDE’ – DISCIPLES FOR LIFE
What happens when you combine Bible teaching with training in practical skills and evangelism, and deliver it to young guys? For five years Africa Inland Mission (AIM) has partnered with the ABIDE programme of Juna Amagara Ministries in Uganda, which seeks to equip young men to transition into sustainable adulthood on the foundation of Jesus Christ.
ABIDE is just one example of the ways in which AIM has been working in partnership with the African Church and other organisations across Africa, sharing the Gospel in practical and relevant ways, since its missionaries first set foot there in 1895. Our long-term vision is to see Christ-centered churches amongst all African peoples.
Amagara Bible Institute of Discipleship and Evangelism is a non-denominational Christian leadership training programme giving secondary school graduates a place to receive Bible teaching, training in evangelism, agriculture and computer skills. Weekends are spent in classmates’ villages sharing the Gospel, praying with villagers and giving practical support. AIM partners with ABIDE by sending short-termers to live alongside the young men, befriending, supporting and encouraging them.
The fifth class of ABIDE students graduated on July 15th, commissioned to impact the world for Christ. In total, 59 students have successfully completed the intense six-month residential discipleship programme and all testify to God’s transformational work in their lives through ABIDE. Jonathan says, "ABIDE is one of the best, if not the best thing that has happened to me in my life. I am a more confident and determined follower and servant of Jesus."
The graduates carry that personal transformation forward to influence positively their churches, schools and communities for Christ. Below is one such story.
PATRICK – STREET CHILD TO ‘PARENT’
Patrick was practically living on the streets in Kabale and had dropped out of school. Through the education, care and spiritual nurturing provided at Juna Amagara Ministries, he was given a second chance at life. Patrick maximized the opportunity: ten years later, now a university graduate, he has developed a street children’s ministry called The Shepherd Centre. It’s a Christ-centered home for boys, rescued off the streets of Kabale, to rehabilitate them back into their communities. Patrick now parents 16 boys (right) with his team of staff at the home. They have seen wonderful growth in the young boys as they go back to school, learn about God and His word, and engage in football tournaments. His passion to help those suffering on the streets arose from his own difficult life experience and compassionate heart. ABIDE was simply a place to inspire and equip Patrick for this ministry.
ABIDE continues to grow and expand. The vision is to have four ABIDE discipleship houses in four regions of Uganda within the first 10 years and to develop ABIDE for young women in the same life stage. Graduates will continue to bear fruit as they live for Christ and His mission in all areas of their lives. Partnership with Africa Inland Mission has been an important component to the development of ABIDE.
There are many ways you too can partner with the work, such as ABIDE, that AIM is involved with. Perhaps you could give some time to go? There are plenty of exciting short-term opportunities, where you could use your gifts to serve in Africa from six weeks to a year. You don’t have to be a student. We have placements for people from 18-80! Or maybe you want to pray or give? Get in touch, to find out how (details below). Let us continue to build the Church of Jesus Christ, one individual at a time.
- Matt Kehn (Director of ABIDE) with Becci Brown (Communications Developer, AIM).