Why Discipleship and Why Africa?


The biggest needs in the African church are DISCIPLESHIP and LEADERSHIP – and the two are intimately connected.
True discipleship produces leadership, and without relational disciple-making, we will fall short in our efforts of producing
leaders.

 

The African and global Church is falling short in making true disciples of Jesus. The current practices and methodologies that the Church is using are not effective in making disciples who are holy, love the lost, and make other disciples.

The lack of intentional Jesus-focused disciple-making is resulting in a loss of biblical values, nominalism in the church, false teaching, and immaturity. All of these characteristics highlight the urgent need for something more.

The possibility and opportunity for offering the African and global church a different discipleship model are as urgent as when Christ first commissioned the first disciples. The experience of mobilizing discipleship has revealed that there is a desperate need for leadership that focuses exclusively on disciple-making on both the African and global level. In order to further the goal of accelerating discipleship both continentally and globally, an intentional disciple-making movement and strategy needs to be developed that produces transformational leaders who are capable of discipling others.

 

Historical Overview

What God has done on the African continent in the last 100 years is one of the modern miracles of the global church. At
the turn of the 20th century, approximately 10% of the continent was Christian. A century later, over 50% of Africans were Christian, a growth rate almost unparalleled in any region of the world! As Philip Jenkins has repeatedly emphasized in his book outlining the future of global Christianity, The Next Christendom, the focus of the global church has shifted from the historic centers of the West, to the global south in Africa, Asia, and the Americas. What plays out in Africa in the 21st century and beyond will shape the global Christian movement. Praise God for this tremendous growth! With this exponential growth has come the need for discipleship!

 

An Intentional Discipleship Strategy that Addresses the Unique Needs of the African Church:


The African Strategic Discipleship Movement seeks to address the urgent needs of the African Church by discipling pastors and church leaders on the African Continent. The Africa 1:56 Initiative (A1:56) is the targeted strategy that seeks to accomplish the goals of the ASDM. Africa is one continent with 56 countries and the vision of the Africa 1:56 Initiative is to have an intentional disciple-making movement in each of the fifty-six countries.

 
 

 
 

PLAN of the Africa 1:56 Initiative:


To disciple the strategic denominational disciple-makers in multi-year cohorts of regional denominational leaders who will then be able to both disciple and create discipleship movements within their own denominations and countries. 

Use the disciple-making methodology of the Ethiopian Kale Heywet Church (EKHC) as the discipleship paradigm. 

Put key denominational disciple-making leaders into a two-year cohort. Each cohort meets four times a year for four days at a time for a total of eight times over the course of the two years. 

Each of the cohorts will include four countries from a particular region with four denominations from each of the countries for a total of 16 leaders and denominations per region and cohort. 

First phase will begin with two regional cohorts in West Africa and another in East/Southern Africa. Phase One’s leadership team will

6 MONTHS

  • Disciple-Making Movement Leader

1 YEAR

  • Disciple Key Pastors

2 YEARS

  • Launch Denominational DMPT

3 YEARS

  • Implement Disciple-Making in Local Churches

4 YEARS

  • Launch 2nd Phase of DMPT

5 YEARS

  • Continue to Implement in local churches

6 YEARS

  • Launch 3rd Phase of DMPT