Thursday, April 2, 2015

News rundown from Africa University

It's been quite an eventful last couple of months at Africa University, the oldest United Methodist-affiliated institution of higher education in Africa.  In case you missed any of these stories, here' s a rundown of some of the good things that have been happening at Africa U:

In February, Africa University hosted a summit on Methodist evangelism in an African context.  This summit was an important step in developing distinctive and culturally approaches to Methodist evangelism for African branches of the UMC.  You can read stories about it from Africa University's website and from the General Board of Global Ministry's website.

Then, on March 21st, Africa University inaugurated its new vice-chancellor, the chief executive officer of the university.  Dr. Munashe Furusa was elected nearly a year ago, but this was his formal installation.  Both Africa University and the United Methodist News Service covered the inauguration, which was attended by United Methodist leaders from around the world.  As the United Methodist New Service further reported, while Dr. Furusa's inauguration is an exciting event, he will face a variety of challenges to the university's educational offerings, physical plant, and finances.

Africa University will be aided in facing these challenges by two significant gifts to the university.  Both the Foundation for Evangelism and the Indiana Conference have committed to endowing new faculty chairs at the university.  The Foundation for Evangelism is raising money to endow the John Wesley Kurewa Chair, an E. Stanley Jones Professor of Evangelism.  The Indiana Conference is raising money to endow a chair in agricultural and natural resources.  Both gifts will provide for long-term support of the university's educational mission.

All of these stories make it an exciting time at Africa University.  While the institution faces some challenges, as do all institutions, the new leadership, new programs, and new gifts should mean that Africa University continues to be a beacon of uplift for the entire continent.

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