Our link with Kondoa was established in 2005 and is inspirational for the churches and individuals involved.
Kondoa Diocese is relatively young, having been established in October 2001. Despite this, it is a rapidly growing church in a majority Islamic community, with 10 deaneries and 43 parishes.
The Bishop is the Rt Rev Dr Given Gaula and his wife is Rev Lilian Gaula, one of the first women to be ordained in Tanzania.
Watch this short film in which Bishop Gaula speaks about the fruitfulness of the link for both Kondoa and Rochester Diocese.
More about Kondoa
The local communities are very poor, even by Tanzanian standards, and this is reflected in low educational standards, with most children being unable to attend secondary education.
Nearly all of the clergy are unpaid and depend on being able to grow food for their families.
Since Bishop Given joined the Diocese in 2012, there has been a strong drive to improve the theological education of the clergy.
Most were originally selected for their faithfulness and leadership skills, despite only being educated to Primary School level and holding a three-month certificate in theology.
The Diocese, being a minority faith, is strongly evangelical and this focus on education equips the pastors to spread the good news of Jesus in their communities and to tribes which for generations have worshipped local Gods, such as the Maasai.
Link in action
Our companion link was established in 2005 and has grown since then in many ways.
There are now 13 parish-to-parish links, a secondary school link (Bishop Justus, Bromley), a Primary School link supported by a group of schools here (including church schools) and a wide range of other projects supported by individuals and churches such as:
- theological education
- drought resistance maize
- community development
- core funding for the administration of the Kondoan Diocesan office and more.
Case study: St Andrew's Paddock Wood and the parish of Bereko
The link between St Andrew's Paddock Wood and the parish of Bereko started in 2006.
The friendship between the church family in Paddock Wood and Bereko has grown over the years to include both primary schools, secondary schools and town council.
This is what those involved with the Bereko partnership have to say about their parish link.
'At first, we simply raised funds for a church building (also St Andrews), we did not know how the relationship would spread out in Bereko and at home to bring both churches closer to our local schools and town councils.'
We now chat and exchange pictures and videos using WhatsApp'.
If you would be interested in supporting or forming a connection with a parish in Kondoa, please contact Sue Chalkley, Chair of the Kondoa Companionship Group, for more information.
Or ask to subscribe to the Friends of Kondoa Group in order to receive regular updates and prayer requests from Kondoa.
Please contact Sue on: firstname.lastname@example.org
Other useful links
Diocese of Kondoa website
The Anglican Communion website - find out more about the worldwide communion of Anglicans.
Poverty and Hope Appeal - The annual giving appeal for Rochester Diocese. A number of projects in our companion overseas diocese are supported by the appeal.