I greet you in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, and thanks for being part the Friends Theological College community. We appreciate your constant support. Friends, the month of April has been a blessing to us and we thank God for every step that we have taken to grow. God has been with us all along. In this newsletter, I’d like to share with you some events that have taken place in three areas in the month of March, 2022.
First of all, I am excited to share the good news that we have officially launched two new academic programs: Diploma in Chaplaincy and Bachelors of Chaplaincy.
The main objective for launching this program is to provide an experiential, immersive, interfaith educational curriculum that best prepares students to be holistic spiritual leaders and care providers through a wide range of innovative vocational pathways, most often in diverse, multi-cultural community environments—palliative care and hospice, hospitals, prisons, business, government, environment, industry, education, and crisis situations. These provisions are not attached to a specific religious institutional place or congregation.
So far, since the inception of the chaplaincy program in 2013, Friends Theological College has successfully trained and empowered over eighty school chaplains, and students continue to enroll. We look forward to training more chaplains until our schools are well-resourced with trained chaplains. Our doors are wide open to receive more students with every passing year.
Other exciting news is that the long-awaited moment for the launch of a satellite campus in Bware Yearly Meeting (BYM) finally took place on March 12, 2022. Requests for the launch of this satellite center began coming in as early as 2013. In the presence of joyous witnesses, mostly consisting of BYM board members, and the general membership of BYM, the Principal, the Academic Dean, two faculty members, John Sirengo, and Nancy Wafula, and the leadership of BYM led by the Presiding Clerk, Ephraim Asige, presented the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to the congregation amid cheers and praises of the name of God. The Presiding Clerk and the General Superintendent, Pastor Albert Njeria, signed on behalf of the BYM General Board while the Friends Theological College Principal, Robert Wafula, and Stephen Mundalo, chair, signed on behalf of the FTC Board of Management.
Training at the FTC-Bware Campus will be certificate-level based, and focused on church music and pastoral ministry. In the initial enrollment were twenty-nine students for Church Music class and seventeen for Pastoral Ministry class. This will be the sixth satellite center to be launched in the eight years of my tenure as the FTC Principal. The FTC–Bware satellite center will be a major relief to Quaker pastors, especially those who have had to travel the long distance from Migori and as far as from the southern part of Tanzania (bordering Malawi) to come to Kaimosi for training in certificate-level programs.
On the FTC main campus, Modular students resumed classes on March 21 and will end their session on April 22, 2022. In the meantime, Residential students are on midterm break for Easter holiday and will report back on April 23.
On 23 March, the FTC Alumni Association held a meeting where they agreed to renew registration and commitment in supporting the FTC, their alma mater. They also scheduled the Alumni Association pastors’ conference from July 12-14, 2022 on the FTC campus. The Association also sensed that there is need to renovate the alumni guest house, and also proposed to have a plan for raising funds towards putting up two classrooms for the highly-needed postgraduate program.
Thank you for your prayers and support. For more information, you are always welcome to pay a visit to our campus. KARIBUNI SANA!
Dr. Robert J. Wafula,Principal
Tel. +254 734 728564
Dear Friends and partners in Robert Wafula’s ministry:
We are so grateful for all of you and how you stand with Robert Wafula and Friends Theological College. FTC is growing and flourishing because of your prayers, encouragement, and financial support. Thank you!
As most of you are aware, the funding for Robert’s ministry is no longer adequate for him to continue in his role as Principal. His inability to return to the US due to visa complications, and other factors, have made it challenging for FUM to invite new donors to replace those who no longer feel called to support him.
Currently, Robert is approximately 75% funded for this term of service as Principal of FTC. If we cannot increase his support over the next few months, we may have to consider other options. We know you care about FTC and Robert and are asking for your help in raising the needed funds to continue his excellent ministry and the great things going on at FTC.
Last month, a very generous Friend offered a challenge gift to help FUM boost Robert’s ministry support. The donor will contribute an additional $10,000 to Robert’s ministry fund if we are able to raise $25,000 in new funds (beyond what current supporters are giving) between now and December 15. Amazingly in the last four weeks, we have already raised over $15,000 of the needed $25,000 to complete the challenge. Only $10,000 more is needed!
Investing in Robert’s ministry helps ensure FTC continues to thrive. The school continues to set new enrollment records and find new and creative ways to prepare ministers and leaders for service throughout East Africa. Please consider a generous gift in support of Robert—one that will help us keep him on the field and fully funded. Here are a few ways you can help:
• Pray for Robert, FTC, and new donors to partner in this ministry.
• If you no longer contribute to Robert’s ministry fund, please prayerfully consider making a significant one-time gift to his ministry account or become a regular contributor again by making a recurring contribution. If you or your congregation is interested in becoming a pledge member for Robert, you can do so by signing up at Wafula's pledge form.
• Encourage others from your Meeting or church to support Robert. Share this newsletter with others who may be interested his ministry.
• Invite Robert to speak to your congregation or mission committee via Zoom. To get it on the calendar, you can coordinate with the FUM Global Ministries Coordinator, Karla Jay.
Contact me—Colin Saxton about other ways to invite Friends to learn about Robert and the great work done through FTC.
• Praise be to God for the safe return of modular students in good numbers (there are currently eighty in class).
• Please pray for the safe return of Residential students, who are expected back on April 23, 2022.
• Please pray for safe travel for the FTC administration who are involved in speaking engagements in several Quaker gatherings in search of students’ enrollment this April.
• Please pray for relief in the biting shortage of gasoline countrywide. This has affected our engagements in travel ministry.