The meetings part of my Africa trip are over. I’m partway into the travel remaining. I’m returned from Nairobi, Kenya to Johannesburg, South Africa on the first leg of 33 ½ hours of travel, leaving the hotel at 4:45 am until I touch down in Orlando on Thursday. The reclining cocoons of Business Class sure look nice as I walk past them to the Economy section!
Yesterday, Chris and I met with Dr. Emmanuel Bellon, Vice Chancellor of Nairobi International School of Theology. We were joined by Nicholos Kimolo, Managing Director of Futuristics. Emmanuel’s vision of the need and urgency of distance learning in Africa is motivating. Nicholas seems a very competent consultant and advisor to come alongside and help implement the vision. Emmanuel shared the urgent need for trained leadership to guide the exploding church membership in Africa. Theological education schools in Nairobi do not graduate enough leaders to supply the new churches planted each year in just the city of Nairobi alone. It’s fairly normal for a church to see its trained pastor preach once every 3 months. The interim times are led by lay leaders and women, mostly untrained. There is an urgent need for trained leadership across the African continent.
Emmanuel sees distance education as an effective way to increase theologically-trained leadership beyond what resident schools are able to do. He began working on a plan 3 years ago, and really launched about a year ago. They have contracted Futuristics to help with the technologies needed.
As we talked, we identified several areas where my technology team in Orlando may be able to partner with this distance learning project. We have developed several systems that are needed in this project. It’s exciting to see the Lord enabling the work of our hands to be helpful to this distance learning project in Africa.
In addition to assisting with their current distance learning project, we agreed to a pilot project to test the ability to deliver distance learning in mobile phones. The current distance project seems focused on the centralized components of distance learning. I think the mobile device project can add value by addressing the end-user component of distance learning by providing a way for remote users to be trained without needing to have a computer and a high-speed internet connection.
This has been a very productive time. I am very aware of your faithful giving and praying. Kay and I are privileged to partner with you. We get to be your hands and feet, your personal representatives working with Dr. Bellon and others to develop new ways to help others grow and develop as Christ’s ambassadors.
More photos from Nairobi are online here.
Our September prayer calendar is online here.
On the journey together with you,
Keith & Kay