The Africa Pentecostal Leadership Institute (APLI) began in the Southern Africa region in the mid to late 1990s, with Dr. Byron Klaus, president of Assemblies of God Theological Seminary in Springfield, Mo., and missionary G.L. Haggard providing leadership training in several venues. Since that time, the ministry has come under the umbrella of Africa's Hope. Several major APLI events have taken place during the last decade.
In 2001 two APLIs were held. Dr. Klaus and Dr. Bill Kirsch, currently director of Africa’s Hope and APLI, traveled to Angola to present leadership training and speak at the national church’s general council meetings. Approximately 300 pastors attended the training event. Klaus and Kirsch then traveled to Nigeria where they provided leadership training for more than 2,000 Assemblies of God district and national leaders.
East Africa held an APLI in December 2002. Leadership from Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda and Burundi attended this conference held on the Bible school campus in Kigali, Rwanda. Teachers included Harley Allen, a pastor from Northern California, Jean Baptiste Sawadogo, missions director for Burkina Faso; and Dr. Kirsch.
APLI also provides teachers for master’s- and doctoral-level leadership courses in Africa. The following courses have been taught by Dr. Kirsch:
In October 2009 APLI training was provided for the leadership of the churches in Gabon and São Tomé, a small island nation off the coast of Gabon. Assemblies of God missionaries have never been posted in either of these nations. However Africa's Hope is working with the national church in São Tomé to train their leadership and establish an ongoing relationship with this vibrant church. Church leaders in Gabon invited APLI to come back again with more leadership training.
Historically, the Africa Pentecostal Leadership Institute has not sought out opportunities to hold leadership training for churches in Africa. However, as invitations come, APLI stands ready to assist any national church on the continent that desires this training.