ACM’s vision is to see the body of Christ in Nigeria equipped for effective Christian testimony through building mentoring relationships among believers. We seek to accomplish this through the following strategies:
- We seek to provide resources necessary for discipleship in the context of one on one relationship. We encourage our participating members to identify other Christians they would have as mentors. We make contacts with potential mentors and let them know of the desire of the candidate to be mentored by them. The mentor takes up the responsibility to disciple the mentee using the available resources provided by the ministry.
- We are sadly aware of the influence of secular system of government in Nigeria; therefore we strive to help pastors to have the attitude of servant leaders through seminars and mentorship.
- It is a known fact that majority of pastors in Africa do not have theological education necessary for shepherding the flock of Christ. It is our desire to train pastors not only through mentorship but also through sending them to theological institutions for training as the Lord provides the means.
- Africa is in danger of losing its young population to HIV/AIDS. The urgency of the case cannot be overemphasized. As a ministry to youth, we seek to embark on AIDS awareness campaigns in urban and rural areas. We carry the message of abstinence to schools and churches using mentors, Christian medical volunteers and paramedics. We provide opportunities for counseling HIV/AIDS patients and equipping them with resources that will aid their growth in the knowledge of God.
- Many more women are becoming widows due to the threat of HIV/AIDS, we seek to encourage these women and help them handle HIV/AIDS cases in their families. Some of them do not know how to protect themselves from contracting the HIV/AIDS virus; we recruit professionals to conduct seminars to groups of women in our villages and towns. We will go from village to village to specifically train women in the area of hygiene and sanitary health. We will provide training in skills that will help these women to improve quality of life.
- We shall embark on evangelistic campaigns from one place to another, aiming at the youth population through crusades, concerts and seminars. Those who come to know Christ are discipled and trained for effective Christian witness through mentorship.
- We shall utilize our resource centers to provide internet/e-mail facilities for the youth. Computer training will help these youths to find means of livelihood in the face of unemployment. The center shall also provide access to typing facilities (computers) for churches to type their programs.
- Due to the prevalent problem of sexual promiscuity among teenagers, abortion is increasingly becoming acceptable among our young people. We seek to encourage covenant for abstinence among the youth but in cases where a girl is pregnant and contemplates abortion, we shall provide counseling services that will encourage these young girls to save the unborn babies. We shall network with other organizations to re-direct the focus of the youth to godliness and moral purity.
ACM was founded in 1998 by Bitrus Cobongs of Gombe State in Nigeria. Through his education at Billiri Bible College and ECWA Seminary, Jos, Mr. Cobongs became convinced that positive mentoring relationships were the key to success in life and ministry. He began seeking ways to offer mentoring training and opportunities to the local pastors and youth, and as a result, Africa Center for Mentorship was formed.
Over the past six years, ACM has begun to expand in many ways. Official registration with the Nigerian government began in 2000 and ACM was also officially incorporated as a 501(c)3 non-profit organization in the United States (the US Articles of Incorporation can be viewed by clicking here). ACM now has a African Director in Cape Town, South Africa, a national Board of Directors in Nigeria, and a Board of Directors in the US. ACM is currently providing mentoring seminars in 7 states and training pastors in Mentoring, Discipleship, and Social Responsibility. ACM is also providing opportunities for youth to be connected with mentors in the Jos area.
In 2003, ACM hosted its first annual mission trip from the US. Mentoring Seminars, Youth Rallys, Vacation Bible School, and Sunday School Teacher trainings were focus of this trip. Over 3000 pastors, church leaders, and youth workers attended these conferences. Vacation Bibles Schools were also held in two cities during this trip. In 2004, ACM partnered with the Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine and the Christian Medical Association to host medical clinics and Hygiene/Aids education in about three cities. Finally, in 2005, ACM provided Leadership Seminars in three cities for about 150 pastors and church leaders. The topics covered were Spiritual Leadership, Principles of Biblical Leadership, The Church’s Response to Social Issues, Conclave of the Elite in the modern Church, and Discipleship. The pastors each received a copy of “The Book on Leadership” by John MacArthur. By God’s grace, ACM is continuing to host a mission trip each year to encourage and train future church leaders in Nigeria.
An opportunity arose in 2006 for ACM to further expand it’s ministry into other areas of Africa. Church Resource Ministries expressed interest in partnering with ACM to extend the work in Kenya and South Africa. After much prayer, discussion, and attending a CRM conference in Jos, Nigeria, the staff and board of directors decided to pursue this opportunity. ACM’s National Director moved to South Africa to further his education. His title was changed to African Director, and he has begun working with youth and church leaders at his new location.
ACM’s goal is to continue to teach and encourage local church leaders to invest in their youth, both as mentors and examples. The youth are the leaders of tomorrow, and it is the church’s Biblical responsibility to love and guide them toward lives of Godly servanthood. If the the church does not rise up to the task, the enemy will. Please pray for the churches and youth in Africa.