The story of Fountain of Hope Ministries of Jinja, Uganda.
Robert Sityo, a young seminary graduate and his wife, Sarah were praying about how they could start a church in 2010. They lived in a predominantly Muslim area in eastern Uganda and no one was interested in coming to their Christian church. One night God spoke to Sarah through a dream and told her that they should start a school. They started with the little ones and added one class year each year. Now many years later, the school is K-12 and has 1300 students, from mostly Muslim families. This Christian school has a great reputation in academic excellence and athletics and these parents are willing to pay the school fees for their children, even while knowing that their kids will hear about Jesus Christ. More than half of the students are now Christ followers.
This began a tremendous outpouring of God’s grace in this community and many others. Hundreds of Ugandans have found Christ and churches have sprouted up.
Robert’s passion for church planting expanded to training church members in evangelism and discipleship. Fountain of Hope will continue to plant churches to build relationships with the Muslim people of these villages through open-air meetings and door-to-door interactions. It is their hope that in addition to helping meet the villagers’ spiritual needs they will also help develop their abilities to better meet the basic needs of families.
An important part of the church planting mission is to teach pastors the Bible so they can accurately handle the Word, communicate the Gospel message and disciple their church members. In Africa it is often true that the most open individual to leadership found in a new church plant is the only one who owns a Bible. It is often a sign of desire and a passion to learn. Equipping these young believers with the skills necessary to build and maintain a church community is a key goal of Fountain of Hope Ministries.
Fountain of Hope is actively involved in seeking out people and organizations with a passion for helping these communities both prayerfully, financially and spiritually. By connecting these resources to community needs we hope to bring lasting change to the people of Uganda.
On a personal note about Robert and Sarah’s family:
This couple always dreamed of having their own children but after 11 years of marriage, they still did not have any of their own, however God gave them a huge family. Many years ago they began adopting orphans. Once Pastor Robert read someone’s Last Will and Testament after he had done a couple’s funeral service. The will said, ”We leave our 5 children to our pastor”. Instant family as those 5 and 13 more have been adopted.
While Robert was studying at Wheaton College in 2014 on a Billy Graham Evangelism Scholarship, he prayed that his family would thrive. He and his wife had adopted 18 children through their 11 years of marriage, though unable to have their own children by birth. While Robert studied at Wheaton, he felt moved to pray that his wife Sarah would get pregnant over their summer together. To everyone’s surprise, God answered Robert’s prayer, as Sarah was soon pregnant… and expecting triplets. They are so thrilled. Praise the Lord that Robert finished at Wheaton and made it home one day after the 3 children were born. On Dec. 3, 2015 the new family members went home from the hospital in Kampala… very grateful to God for His many blessings.
The goals of Fountain of Hope Ministries:
- Evangelism and Church planting among Muslim communities in the Jinja and Bukeeka areas of eastern Uganda at the Nile basin.
The strategy is to plant at least one church each year by reaching out to these communities through crusades, door to door evangelism, and social work such as helping needy children and elderly people with basic needs.
- Training and Mentoring believers who have God’s call to shepherd the new churches.
Help every new church develop a DNA of multiplication. The strategy here is to identify capable men and women and help them through discipleship and coaching to reach their full potential by working alongside them. We provide a Bible School certificate program for all pastors. After they have learned how to lead their congregations, they continue with the work as we provide oversight.
- Transformational Development in church communities
Provide chickens, goats, and seeds to the needy people in the church communities who can raise these animals or crops to improve their living standards. We will encourage the beneficiaries to help others who are in need also. Fountain of Hope will also meet other needs as we can and in those we see potential development. Here is a link to Robert’s Gift Catalog.