Andrew Connally School of Preaching
The Andrew Connally School of Preaching (ACSOP) is located in Arusha, Tanzania and is named after the spiritual giant who came to the country in the 1960’s when it was still known as Tanganyika. He began his work in the southern part of the country at Chimala where he built a hospital and mission that is still in existence today. In the 1970’s he moved north to Arusha where he planted several congregations.
In the 1990’s bro. Connally recruited Cy and Stephanie Stafford to go to Chimala. While the Staffords were there, bro. Connally went to his heavenly reward. But, before he left this life he shared with Cy Stafford his dream of taking the Gospel into the larger cities, maturing the local congregations and then working outward to the smaller towns and villages.
Cy Stafford took that dream and presented a plan to the Kensington Woods (Hattiesburg, MS) congregation and her elders. They agreed to take the lead in a 20-year plan to take the Arusha and Kilimanjaro (Moshi) congregations to the point of maturity (self-leading, self-financing, etc.). These 20 years began in 1998. This plan would be accomplished through evangelistic campaigns and two Bible Schools (in Arusha and Moshi) where local members could go for two years to get a good foundation in the Faith. After the 20 years are up (in 2018) the plan is to turn the Bible Schools over completely to the Tanzanians. This means that they will be administering as well as financing these schools. They are already administering and mostly financing the evangelistic campaigns.
Another part of the plan was to take men from all over East Africa and train them to be preachers. This is where the ACSOP enters the picture. It has been in existence since 2001. When it began it was meeting in the Arusha Bible School facilities. In 2005 it moved to brand-new facilities in the village of Kisongo, just west of Arusha. It sits on 20 acres of land and has two dormitories which can house up to 48 students when at full capacity. Seventy-six students from Tanzania, Kenya and Uganda have graduated thus far.
In early 2010 the ACSOP entered a new and exciting phase of work. For the first 10 years only English speaking students were admitted to the school. The goal was to train these men with the hopes that one day the top students would be able to train men in their own language. That day arrived in February, 2010 when the Swahili program began. Christopher Mwakabanje, a graduate of the Memphis School of Preaching and native of Tanzania, was chosen to direct the program. Now, 18 men are being trained by native men. They will graduate in 2011. This is just one more step in moving toward the goal of handing this work over to the native brethren, as mentioned above. Lord willing, the Tanzanians will be administering the school by 2018. Financially, it will most likely be another generation or two before they can financially support the school, but that is the goal.
Speaking of finances, it takes $200 per month to support, house and feed one student. If you are interested in supporting a preaching student, please contact Ken Upchurch at the Kensington Woods congregation.
Sponsoring Congregation of the TZ 2000 Mission:
Bear Valley Church of Christ
Bear Valley Bible Institute of Denver
2707 S. Lamar St.
Denver, CO 80227
Andrew Connally School of Preaching
P. O. Box 14041
(For all numbers, here and below, when dialed from the US, use 011 and then the rest of the number)
Jimmy Gee - Director
Christopher Mwakabanje – Director of the Swahili Program
Cy Stafford – Director of the TZ 2000 Mission Work
Arusha Bible School
P. O. Box 121263