E-Readers help newest partner school prepare pastors for the church of tomorrow

Junie Nkonge, DRI’s Missions Resourcing Coordinator, traveled to the Methodist College of Theology at Lubumbashi, Democratic Republic of Congo, to lead a training for the newest E-Reader Project partner school.

The Dean of the school, Rev. Mbumba Kaiva Faustin, opened the day by thanking Discipleship Ministries and Higher Education and Ministry for this partnership, remarking that e-readers are the tool to modernize the way teaching is done at this school and sharing appreciation for the fact that now all students will have access to a library.

“This Kindle will help me save time and transportation money,” said Mr. Chipeng, a third-year student. “I would travel 300km to and from Mulungwishi just to go and use the theological library there.”

The College’s Dean Rev. Mbumba Kaiva Faustin signs the agreement with the E-reader Project.

Lubumbashi is the second largest city in the Democratic Republic of the Congo with a population around 5 million. The Methodist college is one of the few theological schools located in an urban environment. The population includes a significant number of young people who have moved to the city seeking work and peace.

The College of Theology at Lubumbashi was created in 2015 as an extension of The Methodist University in Katanga, as the result of a growing wave of evangelism in the city. The school opened with just 19 students; today there are 42. Under the authority of Bishop Katembo Kainda and Bishop Kasap Owan, former Provost of the Faculty of Theology at Katanga, the College of Theology at Lubumbashi is training the church’s future pastors and leaders to be useful in society and for the church of tomorrow.

DRI’s Junie Nkonge assists a student during the training.

The students were eager to learn and the training was very interactive as the students freely asked questions.  With only 24 devices (the rest of the Kindles shipped were delayed), some students and faculty had to share a device for parts of the training. However, each had time to explore the content and features of the devices and ask questions as well as share their discoveries with other participants.

Rev. Olivier Sakanono, an Assistant Professor at the school, expressed his gratitude for this gift.  “In the past, distance learning professors would travel with tons of bags of books to prepare course materials, but having Kindles will make that much easier.”

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The E-Readers for Theological Education initiative is a partnership with Higher Education and Ministry and Discipleship Ministries and is committed to providing e-libraries on e-readers with important theological texts to the libraries of United Methodist-related and sponsored theological schools in Africa and the Philippines. Learn more about the E-Reader project and donate today ª