Children’s Learning Center

This September, we opened up a Children’s Learning Center for our primary grade students. As children here study either mornings or afternoons, the center is open for children to come before or after their studies. We offer homework help, tutoring, activity-based learning, play, and porridge each day.

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As most of our students have parents who were unable to receive a good education themselves, students often have no one to help with homework or concepts with which they struggle. As the teachers typically have an average of 50 students in a class, and students only study four hours per day, children needing help can miss the opportunity to gain the support they need. Additionally, we have seen that absence is often due to hunger. Our center seeks to assist children with all of these issues.

We have 6 staff working with the children daily. These teachers and assistants are excited about the program and showing great dedication to helping our students.

I’m excited about this program and thankful for your part in seeing this ministry opened and blessing our students.  Thank you!

An Update on Churches in Rwanda

Hello. I trust this letter finds you doing well. I am most certainly grateful to you and for the way God has used you in prayer and support of ministry here in Rwanda.60042019_507195503149801_5508346044460564480_n

Just over one year ago, I wrote to inform you of the drastic changes that had taken place here, with the government closing well over 6,000 churches. Some of you compassionately responded to assist the churches here. Last year we were able to see two churches we work with opened after minor upgrades. Then came the patience and perseverance of trusting and waiting.

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In February, God blessed us with a partnership with a set of 3 churches in a sparse mountain region. Pastor Uzziel originally had 10 churches. We visited these churches in 2017 and held a Sunday school training. We returned in early 2018 for an area-wide children’s outreach. Then came the closures, and all 10 churches were closed. With God’s blessing, a few of the churches were slowly opened. Between February and April of this year, God enabled us to open 3 more of these churches.60060841_1370652849753184_4249440440798937088_n

One of these churches had only been opened for one year when the closures came, but already had over 100 members. Another church had been opened for years, and was where many of the congregants had come to know Christ, where they had married, and dedicated their children. By the grace of God, all three churches have now reopened and these congregants are once again worshiping in their churches.

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Last year, our dear partner Patrick, whose congregation was meeting under a canopy, was  among the churches closed. Patrick has remained an example of steadfast perseverance, patience and long-suffering as he continued to faithfully shepherd his congregation. In the immediate aftermath of the closures, he would notify his congregation of a local church where they would all meet. He later secured 3 different locations to hold services as one-by-one, each location would fall through.  His congregation has been walking several miles each week to meet together.

A church in the States graciously provided the funding for Patrick’s church to be built. As they began seeking the building permit, he was first advised that they must purchase additional land. God again graciously provided as another group of Christians provided the funds for the land. Then there were land negotiations, surveys, more surveys, and finally the notice that it was no longer permitted to build in this area due to rezoning! I’m highlighting only a few of the challenges he faced in the 14 months of waiting. On the Thursday before Easter, God miraculously and graciously provided the building permit. The construction is well underway as you can see.

Thank you to each of you who has taken part in the reopening of these churches. For those interested in assisting churches here, we continue with a list of churches we would like to help.

Building a church from the ground up costs $15,000-$20,000.

Upgrading a church so that it can open is generally $2,000. This generally includes cement floors, paint, water tanks, and metal windows and doors.

To assist a church through our ACTS ministry, click here: ACTS

God bless you all for being an important part of all God is doing here.

With Immense Gratitude,

Laura Yockey

Love Alive International

Agape Church Construction Under Way!

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I thank you for your prayers on behalf of the churches here, specifically those with whom we continue to work.

We are rejoicing that God allowed us to see the third church needing renovation reopened. We also praise God that after 14 months of perseverance, patience, and prayer, the building permit for a fourth church, Agape with Pastor Patrick was granted. The construction of that church is well-under way.   This is nothing less than miraculous.

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Thank you for choosing to partner with us in this ministry. God bless you!

April

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Each year, on April 7th, the Country of Rwanda takes time to stop and reflect on the atrocities that sought to destroy this country over a hundred-day period in 1994. This year marks 25 years of growing peace, restoration and advancement for this country that continues to heal post genocide. Memorials, walks, vigils and various methods of reflection will continue throughout the next 100 days. We thank God for the peace and security that is present today.

As we ended the month of March, our Scarlet Cord held a graduation of 28 women successfully completing the program. The majority of these women came from lives of prostitution, were taught of the redemption in Christ Jesus, and learned new skills to enable them to leave their former manner of obtaining money. We saw more than half of these women come to know Christ, some baptized, and most leave prostitution, work through addictions, and form relationships with Jesus. We continue to pray for them as they launch into their sewing that they will continue to follow the path of Christ.

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Please continue to pray for the churches desiring to reopen here. While we rejoice in two churches we were able to help restore and see re-opened in March, we continue to face various obstacles regarding the building and restoration of other churches. Our weekly Bible Clubs with our sponsored children continue very well with at least 300 attending weekly.

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We praise God for all He continues to do, and allow us to be a part of. We further thank Him that you have chosen to join us in this work. God bless you!

Churches are Beginning to Open!

Because of the continued giving of friends like you, this past month we were able to see one church re-opened, and 2 set to open within the next month.

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We began a vocational short-course of 3 months to assist women who had previously studied with Love Alive, but we found were not working. The purpose of this short course is to help them improve skills where they lack confidence, and be able to begin working as intended. Our ongoing Scarlet Cord students will graduate at the end of this month. Just last week, many of the women began sharing testimonies of what God is doing in their lives.

Our Bible clubs for students are going very well. We praise God.

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Thank you again for partnering with us in ministry!

It’s a New Year.

Twenty-nineteen is already bountiful with God’s enabling us to see fruit in various ministries here.

As a new school year began in January, we once again registered more than 400 students in our sponsorship program. This year, we have Bible clubs for our sponsored students in each school where we sponsor.

Through our ACTS ministry of assisting churches here, we have begun funding the renovations for 3 churches we hope to see open in the next month.

On February 1st, 16 ladies graduated from our Scarlet Cord Hairdressing center, following a 7 month program. We have seen God working in their hearts these months, and are happy to see their achievements and spiritual growth. Our sewing students will complete their studies at the end of March.

I share all of this with you, to show you what God is allowing us to be a part of with you partnership! May God bless you abundantly.

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Sponsorship!

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Thank you for sponsoring children through Love Alive International.

The 2019 school year is our 7th year of sponsorship, and we have over 400 students enrolled in our program this year.

Your sponsorship provides each student with necessary school fees, uniform, and school supplies—all the tools they need for a great school year.

We are also excited to be holding weekly Sponsorship Bible clubs in each school this year. We began our first in-school Bible Club the first week of February, and I don’t know who is more excited me, my fellow teachers or the children!

Thank you for impacting students academically and spiritually to prepare them for a brighter future.

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Autumn Update, 2018

Dear Friends of Love Alive,                                                                                     10-02-2018

Happy Autumn! Though there is no changing of color in the leaves here, I’ll still enjoy our green hills, lush with plantain trees, cassava, tea and coffee plants. Once again as I begin a letter to update you, I find it difficult to squeeze into one letter all of the wonderful things God continues to do here.

ACTS–This past Sunday, as my family and I visited one of our ACTS churches, Agape, I was thrilled to recognize a new face in the church choir. Excited, I shared with Pastor Patrick that Esther had been a student in our sewing center 3years ago, and her daughters, who accompanied her, are elementary students in our sponsorship program.  Pastor Patrick then shared that he had the privilege to baptize this mother upon her faith in Christ.  Seeing their faces in this church and hearing about her faith in Christ exemplified to me how God is working in and through Love Alive. While this lady has been impacted by her own vocational training and her children’s education, seeds of the Gospel were planted, though we did not see the fruit initially. Now, a church that we are partnering with has been used of God to help this family grow in their faith in Christ.

As you think of the churches here, please continue to pray.  I am very pleased with the churches we work with, such as this one I mention. While they cannot meet in their own buildings for now, they are sharing a church with 3 other congregations, all meeting at different times, in order to keep their congregations together. Please pray as we have 2 churches we are partnered with who are ready to build as soon as their building permits are granted.  In both cases, the paperwork is waiting on its final approval at the highest level.  We do not doubt the approval, but it is a work of patience as we wait.QCNC5129

Scarlet Cord—This week as we visited the home of a Scarlet Cord graduate upon hearing of the tragic death of her husband, I thanked our teacher Console for truly loving these students, and not only while they are in her class, but long after they have completed our program.  She replied that this is what she loves about working with Love Alive. “We don’t just teach a skill to help them physically, and we don’t just say, ‘God loves you; be saved.’  We offer them that love and demonstrate it through the works God has given us to do. Then as we teach God’s word and teach His love and salvation along with those actions,  that is when everything comes together for these ladies. That is when we see God really work in their lives.”_SAM6573

I am extremely grateful for the Rwandan staff God has blessed us with as we minister together.  Many of you requested the prayer sheets of the students in our center this year. Thank you very much for praying for these ladies. Continue to pray that the Holy Spirit will work in through our center and in their lives for His glory.

God bless you all for your prayers and kindness to this ministry. You are a very important part of all God is doing here.

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With Immense Gratitude,

Laura Y.

6,315 Churches Closed. What Can We Do?

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In mid-February of this year, the Rwandan government brought about a list of new laws for all churches siting safety and hygiene as concerns. By March 20th, in this tiny country, the government had shut down 6,315 churches.

As you can imagine this has greatly impacted the body of Christ here in Rwanda. While there are still churches open, the majority of churches we have worked with and in are closed until they can meet the new safety standards.

Of our Acts churches, 4 of the 5 have been closed.

Of the 10 churches where we most recently held Sunday school trainings, and saw 7 new Sunday schools emerge totaling 250 children reached, all 10 have closed.

Churches where we have held trainings, vacation Bible schools, Bible clubs, youth conferences, all have been shut down.

One dear pastor friend was the lead pastor shepherding 30 rural churches. All 30 were closed.

However, we can help. First, we can pray for the body of Christ here in Rwanda. I am personally praying that the believers would be strengthened in their faith, that they would become more determined to share the Gospel in legal manner, that they would trust God and give sacrificially to further the church and meet the new guidelines, and that among like-faith churches, there would be unity of pastors and leaders, that there would be more potential for churches to work together to build and meet the new regulations and open their doors.

We can help these churches build. The government has promised that as soon as the churches that were closed are able to meet the new building regulations enforced, they can reopen. The difficulty is that most village congregations have little or no capacity to do so, but we can help. I have had the privilege to come to know well several pastors and their churches. I know that they are solid in their doctrine and passionate about sharing the gospel. I know that these pastors are dedicated, selfless, and self-sacrificing to carry out their gospel mission.

It is deeply impressed upon my heart, that we be part of helping churches build.

A brick church, meeting the new regulations can be built from between $10,000 and $15,000. This would include foundation, cement flooring, metal roofing and reinforcement, and metal doors and windows. The price varies due to location and size. Two of the specific churches we are working with already have land on which to build.

Will you please pray with me for the church in Rwanda, and specifically whether God would have you and your church assist these churches prayerfully or financially.

In Christ,

Laura Y,

To support the building of a local church, you can donate here:

Support a Church or here Donate for Churches