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Record number of Annual Conferences attain a 100% investment in the AUF


Africa University is OUR United Methodist school on the continent of Africa. — Bishop Minerva Carcaño

AU's graduates will continue to lead and make a difference in Africa and all over the world. Who knows the impact of these graduates: A future world leader, a Nobel Prize winner, a breakthrough researcher on a global problem? All of this is possible because of the existence and continued impact of Africa University! —Bishop Grant Hagiya

and Idaho, as we are connected by more than social or political events. God in Christ through the Holy Spirit connects us spiritually

together in a web of faith,” said Bishop Grant Hagiya, whose Episcopal area includes the Oregon-Idaho Conference. “We need to commit our resources so that AU will thrive and be sustainable far into the future.” “We believe that Africa University is a powerful agent for the making of disciples of Jesus Christ who can lead us to transform the world,” said Bishop Carcaño, who is a member of the Africa University Board of Directors. “Our investment in Africa University comes from our connectional commitment and our hope for the future that AU inspires in us.” Annual conferences in the North Central and Northeastern jurisdictions continued to lead in their overall investment in the AUF. ose jurisdictions achieved an overall investment of 91.25% and 95.76% respectively. e Dakotas, Susquehanna, Rio Grande and Kentucky conferences rounded out the list of the seven new conferences to reach or return to the 100% level in 2014.

Winter 2015

upport for the Africa University Fund (AUF) apportionment among annual conferences reached a new high in 2014. A total of 31 annual conferences, the largest number in the university’s 23-year history, invested 100% of their asking to the AUF. at’s compared to 25 annual conferences at 100% in 2013. e highlight of 2014 was the performance of the Western Jurisdiction, with an overall investment of 91.78% in the AUF. For the first time ever, five of the eight annual conferences in the jurisdiction achieved a 100% investment in the AUF. e California-Pacific, OregonIdaho and Rocky Mountain conferences joined the Alaska and Desert-Southwest conferences at the 100% level. e Oregon-Idaho Conference closed the biggest gap, moving up from a 90% investment in the AUF last year. “As a global church, what happens in Africa is of importance to what happens in Oregon



Thank you for supporting Africa University through your 100 percent remittance of the Africa University Fund apportionment in 2014. Here is the listing of Annual Conferences with 100 percent or more in 2014 (with 2013 performance for comparison):

North Central Jurisdiction Dakotas East Ohio Illinois Great Rivers Iowa Minnesota West Michigan West Ohio Wisconsin Jurisdiction Total Support

2014 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 130.46% 91.25%

2013 100% 100% 106.5% 100% 100% 100% 131.68% 95.36%

Northeastern Jurisdiction Baltimore-Washington Greater New Jersey New England New York Peninsula-Delaware Susquehanna West Virginia Western Pennsylvania Jurisdiction Total Support

2014 100% 100% 100% 100% 100.43% 100% 100% 100% 95.76%

South Central Jurisdiction Central Texas Oklahoma Indian Missionary Rio Grande Southwest Texas Jurisdiction Total Support

2014 100% 100% 100% 100% 89.22%

2013 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 93.75% 2013 100% 100% 100% 89.04%

Southeastern Jurisdiction Florida Holston Kentucky North Carolina Red Bird Missionary South Carolina Tennessee Jurisdiction Total Support

2014 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 102.98% 100% 91%

2013 100% 100%

Western Jurisdiction Alaska United Methodist California Pacific Desert Southwest Oregon Idaho Rocky Mountain Jurisdiction Total Support

2014 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 91.78%

2013 100%

100% 100% 100.39% 121.89% 91.70%

100% 86.25%

Africa University Today — Winter 2015

Churches view AU as crucial to a future with hope in Africa


wo prominent United Methodist congregations— Highland Park UMC in Dallas, TX, and the Church of the Resurrection in Leawood, KS — raised their engagement with Africa University to a new level with a visit to the main campus in Mutare, Zimbabwe, in February. e group included Rev. Adam Hamilton, the founding pastor, and Rev. Cayce Stapp, director of national and international missions, at the Church of the Resurrection. Highland Park UMC was represented by Rev. Paul

of Health Sciences and eology. Both leaders also made presentations during a two-day Africa Evangelism Seminar, sponsored by the Church of the Resurrection and Global Ministries. “I expected to be impressed by the campus, the buildings and the beauty of Zimbabwe,” said Rev. Cayce Stapp, “but I was overwhelmed by the students —their hospitality, their intelligence and their commitment to making the world a better place.” Between them, the two churches currently support five students from the Democratic Republic of Congo. Recently, Highland Park UMC’s Global Outreach Committee voted to increase its annual scholarship support from four to seven students, beginning in August 2015. While on the campus, the Church of the Resurrection invested $10,000 in mission funds designated for library materials for the Faculty of eology and the Institute of Peace, Leadership and Governance.


Photo left: Rev. Paul Rasmussen. Photo right: Rev. Cayce Stapp and Rev. Adam Hamilton

Rasmussen, the senior minister, and members of its Global Outreach Committee. “I was truly amazed and inspired by the level of passion and commitment from the students,” said Rev. Paul Rasmussen. “e truth is, when I went to college, I did so with a fairly selfish motivation. I went, as many Americans do, to get a degree so I could better my own life—better my own opportunities. Clearly, the students at AU are there in order to better the world around them… I have no doubt that Africa will be profoundly influenced by the graduates from AU.” e five-day visit (February 8-13) included a tremendous level of interaction with students, faculty, administrators and alumni around issues of leadership, evangelism and church growth in the African context. Rasmussen and Hamilton participated in a colloquium and gave lectures. ey sat down with students in the Institute of Peace, Leadership and Governance and the faculties

Photos, news and more on the March Inauguration of AU’s new Vice Chancelor!

How You Can Help

ocated at Old Mutare, Zimbabwe, Africa University is the first fully accredited United Methodistrelated educational institution in Africa, established by action of the General Conference. The university offers bachelor’s and master’s degree programs in six faculties of learning: agriculture and natural resources, education, health sciences, humanities and social sciences, management and administration, and theology. The Institute of Peace, Leadership and Governance offers post-graduate diplomas and master’s programs.


Get ready! A 16-member chamber group of the Africa University Choir is headed to the U.S. in 2015. is student choir boasts members from six African countries and a diverse repertoire. Expect to see the choir in the Mississippi and South Carolina conferences between May 23 and June 16. Keep checking our website ( for a detailed performance schedule and venue list.

Africa University continues to be the evidence of faith, hope and belief in the visions of dreamers. We are counting on you! Encourage your church to set a 100 percent apportionment remittance goal. Sending a Continued next page.

How you can help... continued. portion of your goal each month makes it easier to reach full remittance by year’s end. Your church’s 100 percent apportionment remittance means 100 percent support of Africa University’s operational budget, for costs such as utilities, equipment and faculty salaries.

Alumni honor founding dean with direct scholarship fund

Consider these additional ways of helping the university educate new leaders for the nations of Africa:


frica University graduates have taken the lead in establishing an annual direct scholarship named for the founding dean of the Faculty of Agriculture and Natural Resources. e scholarship honors Professor Athanasius Ndesanjo Mphuru, who died in December 2014, after battling cancer for several years. e university announced the initiative at a memorial service for Mphuru, held in February 2015. Pioneer graduates of the agriculture faculty are providing seed funding for the scholarship. “To the students, he was a teacher, a dean, an advisor, a father figure and above all, a friend who cared,” said Caroline Shoko Mabande, the top graduating female of the class of 2002. “He made sure we had access to financial support for our studies and that we would become relevant in the future, in all our careers and professional development pursuits,” said Mabande. Mphuru served AU for more than 20 years—first, as dean of the agriculture faculty

Prof. Athanasius Mphuru

and later, as deputy vice chancellor. Illness curtailed his academic work and supervision of graduate students in 2013. Designated to support agriculture students, you can make a one-time or recurring gift to the AU Alumni Direct Scholarship in Memory of Professor Athanasius Ndesanjo Mphuru at Alumni who live in Zimbabwe can also deposit their gifts directly into the Africa University account at MBCA Bank Limited, Mutare Branch, Account number: 152002000468, from anywhere in the country. If you’re an African donor, invest in the Mphuru direct scholarship fund before June 30, 2015, and your gift could be matched dollarfor-dollar by the ELMA Foundation.

African United Methodists come together on new resource for evangelism


he new book, Evangelism and Church Growth in the African Context, was the highlight of a February 2015 gathering of more than 140 UMC leaders at Africa University. ey came together at the Africa Evangelism Summit, February 11-13, to share strategies for realizing the central mission of the UMC— making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world. “My prayer is that when we evangelize, we are not simply talking about numbers but spiritualization,” said Rev. Dr. Beauty Maenzanise, dean of the seminary at AU. Among the presenters were two trailblazers in the field of evangelism, Rev. Adam Hamilton, the founding pastor of the Church of the Resurrection in Leawood, KS, and Rev.

Caroline Shoko Mabande

Dr. John Kurewa, vice chancellor emeritus and E. Stanley Jones Professor of Evangelism at Africa University. “I want to try and bring Christianity together with African life,” Kurewa said. “Our older generation has remained with the old way of doing things. We will fail to hold on to the younger generation if we fail to change.” e book is the result of a collaboration between African church leaders, Global Ministries and Discipleship Ministries. For Rev. Muyombo, executive secretary for Africa at Global Ministries, this compilation of the experiences of grassroots evangelists “allows Africans to tell their own story” and bring that story into the mainstream conversation about evangelism within the church.

Planned Gifts are the foundation for the long-term survival of Africa University. As you make your estate plans, consider leaving a gift or bequest to Africa University in your will. If you have already included the university in your estate plans, please let us know so we may welcome you to the Richard E. “Dick” Reeves Legacy Society. Usahwira—This word in the Shona language means “a beautiful friendship.” Encourage your local church to become a partner with Africa University by supporting one student at the university for four years. The annual cost of supporting one undergraduate student is just under $6,000. Local churches may provide full or partial scholarships. Endowment Fund—Give to the Africa University Endowment Fund (World Service Special Gift #03-0188). The interest income from the endowment provides scholarships for our students. For more information about giving opportunities or to make a gift, visit us at To learn about Africa University and its impact, visit Let’s work together to continue the transformation of lives and of Africa. To order resources to help tell the story of the Africa University Fund apportionment, visit or Or, call United Methodist Communications, toll-free (888) 346-3862, during normal business hours. Available resources include: • Africa University: A Place of Peace, Learning and Hope DVD (600115) • Africa University Fund: Pieces of the Dream DVD (600512) • We are Africa University (600611) Africa University Development Office P.O. Box 340007 Nashville, TN 37203-0007 (615) 340-7438

General Board of Higher Education and Ministry Africa University Development Office e United Methodist Church P.O. Box 340007 Nashville, TN 37203-0007

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Africa University Today — Winter 2015

Rev. J. Elbert Williams: A man unafraid to reason


ev. J. Elbert Williams has adopted a Kenyan proverb as his motto for life: “A man who uses force is afraid of reasoning.” Rev. Williams and his three siblings grew up in their mother’s home church, Rafting Creek Missionary Baptist Church of Rembert, SC. It was there, Rev. Williams said, that he “came to know the risen Christ and became rooted in the Christian faith.” After graduating from Sumter High School in 1973, Rev. Williams enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps and served honorably for nine years. Following his discharge, he enrolled at Gupton Jones College of Mortuary Science in Atlanta, GA, and became a board-certified and licensed funeral director and embalmer to better assist his parents in operating and

managing the family business, Williams Funeral Home, Inc. In 2002, Rev. Williams began the process for ordination in e United Methodist Church. He received his first appointment in 2004 and is currently enrolled in the doctoral program at Erskine eological Seminary (SC). Rev. Williams was among the group of thirty-one members of the South Carolina Annual Conference who travelled with Bishop Jonathan L. Holston to Africa University in January 2014. Upon his return, he established an endowed scholarship in memory of his mother and revised his Last Will and Testament to include a bequest to Africa University. “e single most important consideration in my decision to establish the scholarship and to include Africa University in my estate plans was to support higher

education in a place where it would have global impact,” Rev. Williams reasoned. His dream for Africa University is that it will continue to be a beacon of light, not only for Africa but for the world. Elaine Jenkins, Director of Planned Giving The AU Today is published by the Africa University Development Office, in partnership with the Office of Communications, General Board of Higher Education and Ministry (GBHEM). For more information, contact the: Africa University Development Office P.O. Box 340007 Nashville, TN 37203-0007 Tel: Fax: Email:

(615) 340-7438 (615) 340-7290

Africa University Today - Winter 2015  

Africa University News - January to April 2015.

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