UEM News


Education means sustainability in global churches and societies

Photo above: The UEM scholarship holders explore the archives of the Archive & Museum Foundation of UEM (from left): Janine van Wyk, Ngoy Leita Mwakilima, Malte Stollewerk and Mathilda Umuraza. Photo below: sitting together with Andar Parlindungan (centre) and Claudia Schletter (on the right). (Photos: UEM)

The Training & Empowerment department responsible for the UEM scholarship program organized the annual meeting of scholarship holders studying in Germany this summer. The students met at the Wuppertal Mission House to report on the progress of their research and to exchange experiences and challenges during their stay in Germany. After the meeting, the students assessed the effects of the scholarship program on their lives and their respective home churches in a consistently positive light: "Education is about sustainability in global churches and societies", was the tenor of the young academics, who come from various member churches of the UEM.

Ms. Mathilda Umuraza, a doctoral student in Diaconia from the Presbyterian Church in Rwanda recognizes that the opportunity to study in Germany is a reward for her church after years of genocide in Rwanda. Studies of Diaconia management is one of the most effective methods to improve Diaconia ministries in Rwanda, in order to respond to the social problems in Rwanda.

Ms. Tioria Sihombing, a HKBP deaconess, who is proceeding her doctoral in Diaconia agrees as well, that her study will give significant impact to the development of Diaconia ministry in Indonesia. She admires her scholarship, as it will be the first doctoral expert in Diaconia management for her church and for her nation, Indonesia.

In connection with Ms. Tioria Sihombing´s opinion, Ms. Janine van Wyk from ELCRN Namibia is looking forward to working on a better improvement of diaconia ministries of the church after completion of her studies. She hopes that her academic skills will enable the church to become more relevant in responding social issues in Namibia such as poverty and economic injustice.

“Mission is my life”, according to Ngoy Leita Mwakilima from the ELCT East Coastal Diocese, Tanzania. Mission forms her life socially, spiritually, physically and economically. It is her strong reason to continue her doctoral study in mission studies. Ms. Ngoy will spend one year to learn German and one semester to collect literatures at the Barmen School of Theology (KIHO Wuppertal/Bethel). After then, her writing process will be conducted at Makumira University, Tanzania under the supervision of Prof. Dr. Henning Wrogemann. She said: “My studies on deliverance ministries will bring a global perspective to the understanding of this ministry and to suggest relevant mission strategies as a response to this ministry of movement.” UEM brings this relevant issue of deliverance (exorcism) ministries globally and academically, as Ms. Ngoy concluded her appreciation to UEM.

Malte Stollewerk, a doctoral student from Germany who pursues his study in church history at KIHO Wuppertal, researches about the engagement of the Rheinische Missionsgesellschaft (Rhenish Mission Society, RMG) to found and to develop the Rhenish church in South Africa. He recognizes that the scholarship helps him and some scholars from South Africa to explore numbers of uncovered historical facts behind the development of the church.

Andar Parlindungan, head of the department Training & Empowerment of UEM

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