History of EPR (Eglise Presbytérienne au Rwanda)
The Presbyterian Church in Rwanda was introduced in 1906 by Protestants from the German Bethel Mission who came together with Tanzanians to start what became the Presbyterian Church in Rwanda.
After the first world war, German missionaries were replaced by Belgians and Swiss, who were joined later by Dutch missionaries. From the very beginning, the evangelistic work was done by Rwandan people who accepted the gospel. Until 1957 the church was concentrated around three main stations: Kirinda, Rubengera and Remera. After it became autonomous in 1959 under the name Evangelical Presbyterian Church in Rwanda, the priority became to extend its presence throughout the whole country. In the process of growth the church changed its name to Presbyterian Church in Rwanda, which was motivated by the refusal to claim the title “evangelical” for itself while it is deeply engaged ecumenically. As the credibility of the church’s message depends on its response to misery, poverty, hunger, illness and ignorance, the EPR tries to maintain a balance between the teaching of the biblical message and social engagement through its hospitals, schools and development projects.
Structure of EPR
EPR is headed by a president and assisted by a vice-president. There are seven presbyteries divided into 17 regions with a total of 103 parishes.
History of partnership with HOPE
HOPE started its partnership with EPR in September 2013. Starting in two presbyteries, we are currently working in four presbyteries with four field coordinators. The program currently has almost 150 groups with nearly 3,000 members.