How do you recover from inter-tribal violence and turmoil when friends and family are injured or killed, homes burned, cattle stolen, and you have had to flee to a refugee camp? Many East Congolese refugees touched by such trauma have arrived in Bellevue, WA, and have found their way to New Hope Revival at Bellevue Presbyterian Church (BelPres). They are an integral part of this diverse worshipping community and offer an amazing testimony to the power of God’s love.
In response to the enduring crisis in their homeland, Pastor Alexis Ruhumuriza has a vision for the future for this area – one of reconciliation, forgiveness, peace, and a sustainable future.
New Hope Congo is a ministry of Bellevue Presbyterian Church (BelPres), currently in the process of becoming a 501(c)(3).
We are dedicated to addressing the decades-long devastation inflicted by conflict in South Kivu in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). We are focused on healing the wounds caused by intertribal conflict in South Kivu and working with all peoples of that area to bring reconciliation between tribes. For us, this is not just another place of injustice that needs help – it is the homeland where our brothers and sisters at New Hope Revival were born and raised, as well as many other people and tribes. It is a place where people continue to suffer the loss of loved ones, property, security, and dignity.
We partner with New Hope Reconciliation Center (NHRC) in South Kivu – a separate non-governmental organization in the DRC. New Hope Reconciliation Center (NHRC) is an associated, but independent, Congolese nonprofit organization staffed with an 11-member multi-tribal Congolese team. NHRC operates in South Kivu, one of 26 provinces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
Through the visionary leadership of Pastor Alexis, the commitment of the BelPres/New Hope community, the tireless efforts of NHRC, and the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, we believe God is writing a new story for East Congo, transforming this community through love and forgiveness.
New Hope Congo sprang from the vision of its founder, Pastor Alexis Ruhumuriza, a native of East Congo and a refugee from Rwanda where he spent his post-childhood years. New Hope Congo is co-led by Bel Pres member Mark Phelps.
For those who have witnessed their loved ones being massacred and have barely survived with their own lives, forgiveness and reconciliation are hard. But in the words of Pastor Alexis, nothing is impossible with God. Where others see roadblocks, he sees possibilities. “God’s way is to bring people together, creating a new way, transforming a traumatized community into a new community of love, forgiveness, healing and hope,” says Pastor Alexis. He reminds us – it is God’s plan, not his.