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P.E.A.R. History

The Province of the Anglican Church of Rwanda (French: Province de l'Église anglicane du Rwanda or P.E.A.R.) is a province of the Anglican Communion, covering 11 dioceses in Rwanda. The primate of the province is Laurent Mbanda, consecrated on June 10, 2018.

 

The Province of the Anglican Church of Rwanda traces its roots to two missionary doctors of the British Church Missionary Society, Arthur Stanely Smith and Leonard Sharp, coming from Kabale, in Uganda, which began a mission movement in the Eastern area of Gisaka, in Rwanda, from 1914 to 1916. They would reach Rukira in 1922. Geoffrey Holmes, a captain from the British Army, would start an Anglican mission in Gahini, in 1925. In 1926, Harold Guillebaud baptized the first converts at Gahini. He also would translate Christian books into Kinyarwanda. In the following years, other Anglican missions were created, like the one started by Geoffrey Holmes in Kigeme, in 1931. The Anglican Church of Rwanda was created in 1965 after the independence of Rwanda from Belgium (1962), under the Province of Rwanda, Burundi, and Boga Zaire. The first Diocese was initiated in 1966, having Adony Sebununguri as the first Bishop of Rwanda.

 

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The name of Anglican Church of Rwanda (Église Anglicane au Rwanda) was adopted on 18 October 1979, still at the Province of Rwanda, Burundi and Boga Zaire.

 

On 7 June 1992, the Province of the Episcopal Church of Rwanda in the Anglican Communion was formed, consisting of seven dioceses, Kigali, Butare, Shyira, Byumba, Cyangugu, Kigeme, and Shyogwe. 

 

The 1994 genocide and war left the Church and the nation in ruins. Since peace has returned, the Church has embarked on a program of spiritual healing for thousands of traumatized people. The church is now a contextualized body, partnering with others, united under the Gospel. Formed as a community under our incarnate and resurrected Lord, and influenced by our history, heritage, and the East African Revival, the Province of the Anglican Church of Rwanda seeks to be a place of reconciliation, evangelism, discipleship, and development.

 

East African Christian University (formerly, Kigali Anglican Theological College) was started in February 2006 as a response to the training needs of the Anglican Church of Rwanda in post-genocide Rwanda and is staffed by pastors from several home dioceses, local staff, and a number of visiting lecturers from partners from the UK and the USA. The university strives to provide quality Christian training to the next generation of Christian leaders for Rwanda and, in turn, to assist in the development of the whole country.