The Model & Philosophy

Don’t just teach them to farm. Teach them to farm as Christians and to care for the environment.

 

-Archbishop Onesiphore Rwaje commissioned the Sowers of Hope program with these words in 2016.

THEOLOGY MATTERS

If the Gospel is just that Jesus died so we could go to heaven when we die, then farming really doesn’t matter. BUT if the Gospel is that God is working through Jesus to restore a loving relationship between God, People and all of Creation, then farmers find themselves at the center of God’s Mission in the world.

FROM SHAME & FATALISM

Most of the food in developing countries is grown by smallholder farmers, many of whom are working the depleted land with a lack of access to information, materials, and opportunities. But the land IS capable of producing what is needed, and farmers ARE capable of the creative innovation necessary to farm the land well. We believe that at the root of obstacles to food security is SHAME and FATALISM associated with poverty and rural living within an industrializing world.

TO DIGNITY & HOPE

Sowers of Hope AgriFaith Associations are designed to restore DIGNITY and HOPE to farmers – not from policies or economics, but from FAITH. Farmers are not called to be recipients of charity but are commissioned to be ministers of the Gospel. By believing in the importance of their work, shame is overcome by dignity. By believing that God cares about their daily lives and is working for a complete restoration, fatalism is overcome by hope.

EQUIPPING FARMERS

We avoid teaching techniques. We avoid giving answers. Instead, we work through local churches to equip Christian farmers to develop their own techniques and find their own answers. Sowers of Hope learn how to experiment and innovate looking to the Bible, the Land, and Each other for guidance.

HOW WE DO IT

2 years to establish AgriFaith Associations, including

Training lead farmers (“Commissioned Farmers”) elected by their churches

AgriFaith Schools taught by commissioned farmers

Teaching Model & Curriculum 

Establish Savings and Credit Groups

A savings and credit group is a form of peer-to-peer banking. Our farmers save and borrow money together towards their agribusinesses.

Create improved access to markets and materials

Sponsor Subsidized Agricultural Items

By the end of the 2 years, each local church is expected to represent a self-sustaining AgriFaith Association that will continue to study, work, and worship together.

It is sustainable because farmers are not made dependent on outside resources or information. Instead, they learn how to depend on Scripture, the Land, and Each other.

OUR PARTNER

Sowers of Hope was born out of a ministry called Hope On A Thousand Hills of the Anglican Church of Rwanda in Gasabo Diocese in 2017.