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Kenya Partnership: The Power of Friendship

John Neate

The Kenya Partnership is a collaboration of two nations in the global Vineyard family. Launched in 2016, it aims to build leadership capacity through mentoring, to grow cross-cultural understanding and to bring cross-cultural learning back into our home communities – both here and in Kenya. Here, John Neate, UK lead for the Partnership, talks about the transformational power of learning through friendship.

When I made my first trip to Kenya in 2013, I could not have imagined just how much I would come to love that country and just how significant it would prove to be in shaping my missional thinking. 

I wanted to explore the possibility of establishing a new relationship between our two countries, following Kenya being ‘released’ as its own national movement of Vineyard churches (commonly known as an Association of Vineyard Churches or AVC). 

Three years later, and following intensive work with their National Director, we had our answer – a new programme to partner Vineyard leaders in Kenya with leaders in the UK and Ireland. 

Our aim is to invest in the Vineyard leadership in Kenya and to build cross-cultural understanding between Kenyan and VCUKI leaders. We’re delighted that around 10 percent of Kenya’s Senior Pastors have already come onboard and we’re planning to include many more, especially the next generation of young leaders.

The UK/Ireland participants in the Partnership have learnt so much, and in many cases, precious and enduring friendships have been built in which we have experienced a very special quality of loving care and interest.

From our end, we have come from a range of Vineyard churches around the UK and Ireland, including Farnham, Trent, Reading and Wokingham.  The value of this Partnership is felt in both directions and I’m delighted to be able to share with you this short video from Edgar (Eddie) King, the incoming Kenyan National Director, who gives the Kenya perspective.

I would love to encourage more people, from a wider range of Vineyard churches, to get involved in partnerships like this one. If you have coaching or mentoring skills, a heart to invest in the lives of Vineyard leaders in Kenya, and a hunger to learn to work more effectively cross-culturally – both internationally and right here in our local neighbourhoods please do get in touch with us.

If you would like to know more about Mission Partnerships and how your church can partner with Vineyard churches around the world, please email [email protected].

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