University Discipleship Movement in East Africa
The University Discipleship Movement in East Africa began in Uganda with a seed in 2002. Three students at Kampala International University met together for Bible study and fellowship and to encourage one another in their Christian walks. They met only once a week, and on Sundays they each attended their own churches.
As time went on, more students joined the fellowship and other groups began to form. Eventually, the students started United Faith Chapel, a thriving community of believers and a full-fledged, student-led church in Kampala, Uganda.
But God’s transforming work did not stop in Kampala. As the ministries at United Faith Chapel grew, students at other universities throughout East Africa asked the church to help them create their own student-led ministries, leading to the formation of the University Discipleship Movement.
The movement’s vision is to to see a generation of transformed university students who will take the whole gospel to the whole world. In addition to working with existing Christian groups on university and college campuses, UDM leaders help establish discipleship programs and campus churches at universities where Christian groups do not yet exist. Currently, discipleship ministries are being held on 22 campuses in East Africa with the potential of more universities being reached as financial and personnel needs are met.
WGM missionaries help support and train the students and leaders of the movement to expand the outreach and to develop new student programs tailored to meet the specific needs of each university. UDM leaders follow a clear curriculum contextualized by WGM missionaries to help them mature in their faith and leadership abilities. All students and leaders are encouraged to grow in their faith and to use their lives to make lasting impacts wherever Jesus leads them.
The discipleship movement reaches the less than 5 percent of East African people who are able to attend university. These students are growing closer to Jesus and are being challenged to be change agents for Him in their communities and countries. Many discipleship leaders shared that they see a huge difference in the students who have completed UDM’s programs. Here’s such a story:
Edwin graduated from Kampala International University in 2011 with a business degree. Most people expected him to get a job to support himself and his family in Kenya. However, Edwin felt called to remain in Kampala, Uganda, to assist with the ministries at KIU. This decision defies the cultural norms for educated young Africans. Edwin sacrificed a guaranteed salary and comfortable housing to fulfill the call Jesus placed on his life—to educate future African leaders.
In the midst of this amazing work, the University Discipleship Movement is facing obstacles. Spiritual warfare challenges students and leaders in their faith, university administrators are not always open to the ministries’ active role in student life, and financial struggles make it difficult for the movement to expand and acquire necessary resources.
Despite these challenges, God is faithfully making a way for the movement to effect transformation among university students and leaders throughout Africa. Grounded in their faith in Jesus and their education, students are being equipped to spur long-lasting spiritual and economic development.
Partner with the University Discipleship Movement
PRAY: Pray for wisdom for WGM and University Discipleship Movement leaders as the ministry continues to grow. Pray also that the Lord will provide the finances and other needed resources.
In light of the spiritual battles the university movement faces, pray for protection and provision for the leaders and students.
Pray that the Holy Spirit will have freedom to work deep in the hearts of the students to challenge them to live God-honoring lives.
Pray that university administrators will be open to the University Discipleship Movement.
GIVE: Click Give to help provide Bibles, Bible study materials, books on leadership, and other needed materials for this movement. Make checks payable to World Gospel Mission and write account #150-21343 on the memo line. Send check donations to:
World Gospel Mission
P.O. Box 948
Marion, IN 46952-0948
GO: Short-term teams can assist students with local outreach. Those who are equipped to lead leadership or ministry seminars are particularly needed. Contact email@example.com for more information.
Is God calling you to serve long term? Contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you’re interested in ministering among university students in East Africa.
SHARE: Click this link to view a speaker outline for the University Discipleship Movement in East Africa