Tuesday, May 20, 2014

A Year In Rwanda...

by Hillary Dotson

Rwanda for the Year?
Yes. What better way to celebrate a recent college graduation than to head to Rwanda for the year?! My family has been a member of Church of the Apostles for the past twelve years. And on July 4th, the Apostles' Partnership Team 2014 will be sent for the fifth consecutive year, this trip being my third. Over the last 2 trips, our church’s desire has become mine as well and I have felt the Lord’s call to personally respond by staying for the year after our team returns home. So for the 2014-15 school year, I will be teaching English at the Sonrise School and Orphanage.

Since leaving Rwanda last summer I have sensed the Lord continuing to pull me back for an extended term. A discernment team, including both Patrick Dominguez and Eric Bolash, met with me in mid-February to help evaluate three opportunities and consider where and how I could best be used. They challenged me to spend the following week praying for God’s will to become explicitly clear as a decision needed to be made. The very next day the Lord put me on my back for six days (literally in the hospital with a collapsed lung) to clear away all distractions so I could seek Him and discern His best. By the end of that week, my thinking changed and I sensed clear direction to accept a position teaching at the Sonrise School: http://www.mustardseedproject.org/section.asp?secID=7 

The Sonrise School
The Lord’s orchestration is remarkable, especially as I look back and see how He has brought me to this place. The Sonrise School was opened 7 years after the Rwandan Genocide in order to provide for the educational and spiritual needs of many children orphaned in the tragedy. Today, it exists as one of the top-performing boarding schools in Rwanda, educating children of paying Rwandan families as well as those there on sponsorship. Church of the Apostles has supported the Sonrise School since its opening.  

I am thrilled to return to Gikomero to see our brothers and sisters again, and I am excited to explore a new part of Rwanda as well. A huge prayer during my time in Rwanda is that God would show Church of the Apostles how to take the next step in our sister church partnership. Specifically, how we could create a sustainable, long-term position for someone from Apostles—a position with enough infrastructure to benefit both our sister church and the individual(s) going. Please pray for clarity along these lines during our partnership trip and during my year in Rwanda. Thank you for your support and commitment to this partnership!


  1. Thank you Lord for the gift of your daughter Hillary. Just another one of your amazing creations!!!

  2. Safe journeys. Thanks for being "salt and light".