East African Mennonite churches form mission board

NAIROBI, Kenya – Mennonite bishops from Kenya and Tanzania formed a mission board during their annual meeting, held in August at the Mennonite Guest House. “We are no longer churches which just receive missionaries, but churches which send missionaries,” the church leaders stated.

Eastern Mennonite Missions (EMM) has a 78-year history of working with churches in East Africa. “It is immensely satisfying to see this expression of the churches’ maturity and passion for missions,” said Aram DiGennaro, EMM’s regional representative for East Africa.

The new mission board, named International Mennonite Mission of East Africa, or IMMEA, reflects the bishops’ conviction that East Africans have what it takes to do missions on their continent.

Leaders agreed that their churches must become more overtly missional. Their first step will be to create a missions training program. 

To stimulate passion for missions, the leaders are introducing the concept of a “Year of Service for Christ” into their churches, with a goal to train 100 people as disciple-makers by the end of 2013.

A committee of three – Bishop Philip Okeyo and Pastor Rebecca Osiro of Kenya Mennonite Church, and Bishop Christopher Ndege of Tanazania Mennonite Church – will take responsibility for the ongoing development of IMMEA. Both churches are members of Mennonite World Conference.

- From EMM release by Debbi DiGennaro

 

Photo: Bishop Philip Okeyo, president of the newly-formed IMMEA. Photo by Zion DiGennaro.