Tony and Cath work with the Africa Inland Church in Tanzania (AICT), and are based in Morogoro. Cath is AIM’s Child Safety Officer and Tony coordinates the Institute of Bible and Ministry (IBM) under the authority of the AICT, and also is AIM’s African Mobilisation Consultant.
Tanzania is one of the world’s poorest nations; agricultural subsistence dominates its economy. Health and education sectors require massive investments.There is freedom of religion; all major faiths have the ability to share and propagate their faith. Christianity makes up 54% of the population with Islam totalling 31%.
Bill Hybels asserts that ‘the local church is the hope of the world,’ and the Swansons are also convinced that it is through vibrant church congregations, faithfully serving and witnessing in their communities, that Tanzania will be transformed by the gospel of Christ. They live in the bustling, dusty town of Morogoro which sits under the shadow of the stunning Uluguru mountains.
Before Tony and Cath started serving with AIM in 1998, Tony worked as a pastor and Cath as a health visitor based in West Sussex. From 2005 they have been working alongside the AICT – Cath originally in HIV and children’s ministry, and Tony coordinating the Institute of Bible and Ministry. This is a multifaceted ‘on the job’ programme of teaching and dynamic interaction which aims to ‘enable, mobilise and inspire’ church leaders to a closer walk with the Lord and increased effectiveness in ministry.
Tanzania, like the rest of Africa, is a culture in rapid flux. The Institute is trying to help church leaders to respond with wisdom and discernment to the threats, opportunities and challenges facing them in the 21st century and to preach a gospel which is both faithful and relevant. It has been a productive past few years for the Swansons, and their AIM team in Morogoro expanded significantly with the arrival of the Dixon family and Steve and Ruth Lancaster. Together with the AICT, the team are in the process of building and developing a retreat centre at Sanga Sanga, which will act as the focus of the Institute’s activities.
In September 2015 Tony took on the new role of African Mobilisation Consultant on top of coordinating IBM. He will be working to help AIM in our aims to mobilise African believers to outreach and evangelism among their own people.
Could you partner with the Swansons in this work?
Partner with the Swansons
Tony is coordinator of the Institute of Bible & Ministry in Tanzania and African Mobilising Consultant. Cath is AIM’s Child Safety Officer.
If you would like to partner with the Swansons in your prayers, gifts and practical support, please download and complete this form and return to Freepost RTJH-JRZE-XXKX Africa Inland Mission, Halifax Place, Nottingham NG1 1QN.
For any queries, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Latest prayer points
- 8 December 2017
“Many of you will already know that 2018 will be our 20th year in Africa! We were fresh faced 33year olds when we arrived! Now we are looking to see where we should be for the next chapter of our lives. We have prayed and sought counsel over the past year or so, and have decided that at the end of 2018 we will move on from Tanzania. This is largely a sense that our roots are being pulled up, despite feeling so at home here. Also, our goal is that the church will take increasing ownership of the Institute of Bible and Ministry and have the space and freedom to make it work in their own way. We are planning to relocate to Entebbe, Uganda in January 2019 and continue our AIM roles from there with a broader platform for what we are already doing. Tony will continue developing the African Mobilisation Hub and Cath, Safeguarding and also to look for local openings for ministry that may open up. Entebbe is unusual in being a quiet- ish town on Lake Victoria with an International airport. This will make life so much easier in terms of travel and we are looking forward to that. Please join us in prayer as the future unfolds.”
- 3 November 2017
“This week IBM Bible teachers Steve Lancaster and Rev Yohana Batano are in Iringa, teaching at the last of this year’s regional pastors’ seminars. Pastors, evangelists and their wives from as far as away as Songea in the far south west of Tanzania will gather together to receive teaching entitled “Show Me a Leader with Moral Integrity”. In these days when world leaders often leave a lot to be desired, the Church has the opportunity to model godly leadership—but sadly this doesn’t always happen. So this teaching is crucial for the ministers of the AICT. Pastor Seseja who attended the seminar in Magambua in August commented, “I have woken up in my heart to things I need to deal with and think more about.” Pray that God will enable Pastor Seseja and each one who receives this teaching to grow in their knowledge and practice of leadership that is characterized by integrity and godliness.”
- 21 April 2017
Cath writes: “This year’s children’s camp theme is ‘safari ya maisha’, ‘the journey of life’. We held our national teachers’ training here in Morogoro last week and explored the theme of ‘travelling with Jesus throughout our lives’. What came up again and again was the necessity of forward motion as a basic requirement. So even when you’re moving really slowly, you just need to know you’re making progress. We asked ourselves, ‘are we moving forward? Or are we stuck, or worse, slipping backwards?’ Training weeks like this are a powerful means of encouragement to the teachers to persevere with stubborn joy. The actual camps are run up and down the country in June with several thousand primary school children expected to attend. As ever, this outreach of the church is worth every ounce of energy.” Please pray for the organisation of these camps, and that God would use them to grow these children in faith.