The lame reportedly walked, the blind had their sight back, the deaf heard and the sick recovered at the Pastor Robert Kayanja’s three day crusade held at Amahoro National Stadium last Week.
Renowned pastor Kayanja arrived in the country last Friday morning to a massive crowd. His arrival at the stadium excited many, cheers went up as all struggled to have a rare glimpse at the spiritually gifted pastor Kayanja. Pastor Kayanja is the founder of Ugandan based mammoth church- Miracle Centre Cathedral.
As he walked straight to the podium, thousands of Christians started singing praises to the Lord. When the believers who filled the stadium to capacity noticed his glorious presence, he garnered a deafening applause. Prolonged screaming, chants of praise and clapping reverberated the stadium.
Kayanja, clad in an African Kitengi over a back trouser, he joined in the praises. He prayed for the country, people and the world.
On the next day, Saturday, thousands of excited believers converged at the Stadium at dawn to beat traffic jam. The queues were long. Office workers and children applauded with excitement. Believers brought in the sick to receive healing.
The three-day event also attracted a number of people from neighbouring countries including Kenya, Burundi, and Tanzania and Uganda. Others came as far as United States.
At first the crowd hesitated, listening respectfully to this great pastor who seemed to have descended from the heavens on their humble world. Then they began to clap and dance, at first with a kind of timid rapture more cautious than carefree.
“This scene is just great,” stimulated 20 year-old Frank Mugabo, determined not to miss the crusade said.
“I don’t know what you members of the new generation say about it,” he said, but “We will keep praying till those who don’t believe in God their eyes and ears open.” Mercy Uwera, who trekked from Uganda said.
“I have been down for the last thirteen years but started walking soon after Pastor Kayanja prayed for me,” a dark-skinned girl says but declines to give her names.
“We love it and we wish there was more of it on a daily basis. We need to turn to God” said 23-year-old Aline, a student.
“It’s terrific, especially in a country like ours which had bad people in the past to get everybody all together, all mixed up together.”
“It was a beautiful crusade. I won’t see one similar to this soon,” said 46-year-old Isabella Murungi.
“I was longing to see him. I wanted to see him, I am told he performs miracles because I have never seen it before,” Moses Rurangwa told Sunday Times.
Girl Power Conference
Before the main crusade, Jessica Kayanja also a senior pastor, held a Girl Power Convention on Saturday November 10 at petite stade.
This mainly attracted women from all walks of life including entrepreneurs, doctors and police officers. During deliberations, the Kigali Mayor, Dr Kirabo Kakira urged women to be become self-reliant by participating in economic generation projects.
By participating fully in the country’s economic development and be empowered financially, pastor Kayanja said women shall turn to God even more.
“The potential for the development of women entrepreneurs is huge and largely untapped, so I encourage women of Rwanda to stand up and be prophetic women who speak to situations and effect changes,” said Ms Jessica.
She added that this would have a major impact on productivity, employment and prosperity among women groups.
“You are bigger people in the eyes of God. God sees you as a great people so you should not despise yourself,” Jessica adds.
The Girl Power as an organization has its genesis in July 2005. Pastor Jessica, the founder of this organization firmly believes that women are uniquely fashioned by God and specially graced to play a complementary rather than competitive role alongside men in transforming society.
Since its inception in 2005, Girl Power helps women discover the exceptional traits that God has given them and exploit it to attain their individual destinies and for the greater work of society.
Before the Girl Power meeting, Pastor Robert Kayanja held a pastors’ conference at Jali club. The conference that involved over two thousand pastors and Christian leaders from different regions of Africa started by honoring the national anthem led by Pastor Fred Nyamurangwa.
He said: “The blind will see, the deaf will hear, the lame will walk and the dumb will speak,” he announced and encouraged faithfulness and trust in God. He added that the heavens are aware and attentive to what is happening in Rwanda.
Talking to the Christian leaders, he said that they should understand that good leadership comes from God not on earth.
“It is time for the international community which used to see Rwanda as a humiliated country with poverty; Genocide and poor leadership come with development, peace, harmony and love” he said. He added by encouraging Rwandans that God has a big plan for them.
“People are going to wonder and get surprised on how God is changing and making new developments in Rwanda. Pastor Kayanja also hailed President Paul Kagame for having united the people of this great nation.
“Every one in Rwanda should be proud of being a Rwandan, God did not make a mistake to create you,” he said.
He urged the Christian leaders to base and have faith in the word of God if they want the economy to prosper especially in the fields of education, food production, military science and many others.
“If you put the word of God in action great things happen and developments in all fields begin hence purging of poverty in Rwanda.” Kayanja asked man to stop doubting the existence of God.
Despite the huge turn up and excitement, some in attendance believe miracles are things of the past. The biblical doubting Thomas.
“God is the only person who can heal and not human beings. Pastors can teach about morals and all that but healing the blind is a job beyond man,” Agnes Murerwa, a university student said at the crusade.
She says like the biblical Thomas, she cannot when people say so and so was healed before she is showed the proof. The doubting Thomas was one of the 12 disciples in the Bible.
Another name for Thomas was Didymus, which comes from the Hebrew and Greek words. He wasn’t one of the more well known disciples, but he was popular enough to earn the nickname “Doubting Thomas.”
Because he did not simply believe that Jesus had risen from the dead, he was given this label-the doubting Thomas.
John Kanamugire too had been a ‘Doubting Thomas’ before the crusade but the miracles witnessed, made him a better person and made his faith much stronger.
The biblical story is told how Jesus appears to some of the disciples, but Thomas was not with them the first time. (John 20:25).
So when the other disciples told him that they had seen the Lord, Thomas said to them, ‘Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe it.”
But eight days later, Jesus appears before His disciples again and said ‘Peace be with you!’ and then to Thomas, ‘Put your finger here; see my hands.
Thomas said to him, ‘My Lord and my God!’ Then Jesus told him, ‘because you have seen me, you have believed---- (John 20:26-29). If Thomas hadn’t been a doubter, this famous saying may not have been recorded in history.
Kenneth Musoni who also attended the crusade says believing without seeing has helped him at many times in life. That when things have been going badly for him, the saying of believing and stay hoping for a better life keeps him positive.
Even though Thomas earned a negative label, he was not lacking in some very good qualities of a believer. It is well known how he displayed great courage and loyalty.
When the other disciples tried to keep Jesus from going to Bethany to raise Lazarus from the dead because of the danger from those in the area who had just earlier tried to stone Him (John 11:8), Thomas said to them, “Let us also go, that we may die with Him” (John 11:16).
Thomas also asked Him one of the most famous questions. John 14:5-6. Thomas said to him, ‘Lord, we don’t know where you are going, so how can we know the way?’ Jesus answered, ‘I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.’
Monica Rukundo says: “I think I have behaved similar to Thomas at times. I have gone through stages in my life when I question God’s existence. When I was in college I remember wondering how religion and science could agree.”
“I could not miss this chance because this is the time I think my child will get her healing from cancer,” Joyce Kantalama from Burundi said as she and her child struggled to enter the stadium.
In the 2006 Ugandan elections, Pastor Kayanja reportedly said one of the presidential candidates would die and the winner would have 61% of the votes. For reasons unknown until today.
The incumbent president Yoweri Kaguta Museveni scored 59% while the main rival Kizza Besigye garnered 37%. But Christians maintain that failure of the prophecy does not necessarily disgrace any prophet.
They say that when a prophecy about death for example or any other shocking thing is made, Christians pray that it does not come to pass.
Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed?