It is amazing how time flew so rapidly since the last time we sent you a newsletter. The past months were extremely busy. We dealt with lot of issues related to budget constraints, and the implementation of measures to strengthen our institution and refocus our energy on what matters the most and inevitable changes. It was hard, challenging, and time consuming for our board members, our personnel and me. But, we are glad we made some courageous decisions and we begin to see some fruits and hope that more will come in the following months and years.
Thank you for standing by our side through prayer, for your partnership and financial support. Your investment is making a difference. By God’s grace we have obtained funding for the first two classrooms on our own campus in Mokolo. This means a lot to us and to the population, many of whom were beginning to doubt our ability to realize our vision since it has been almost four years since the land breaking ceremony and yet the construction project did not start. As we are about to begin construction, we can feel the joy in the community. One indication of this is the fact that the mayor of the Mokolo went ahead and freely granted us additional land all around our campus. He is also planning to help us build a bridge that will connect our campus to the main road. We praise God for His favor and are confident more blessings are on the way.
Recently, thanks to the generosity of a donor, we were able to purchase land in Yaoundé, the capital city, in order to hold large events. This is another milestone for which we are very grateful to God. Our plan is to build classrooms, dormitories, and apartments that can be used as a guesthouse in order to generate local income for our university. We pray that God will touch the hearts of generous donors so that the constructions begin before the end of the year. It is our dream that our next major event on July 2017 would happen in our own facilities.
Speaking of major events, we have two coming up this July: An awareness-raising seminar for Christian ministry among the unreached people groups (July 3-5) and an international leadership conference (July 6-8). Both events will be held in Yaoundé – Cameroon. The theme of the international leadership conference this year is “Family in the African context: challenges and opportunities.” Please pray for God’s provision, guidance, wisdom, special anointing, and protection, as we will gather 500 key leaders from all over Africa. Our speakers and participants will be coming from various parts of Africa, Europe and the United States. Beyond the conference, we would like to see a movement of positive transformations in families on the basis of biblical teachings and commitment to make a difference in a generation where family is more attacked than ever. Please pray that God will help in our strategizing.
The final stage of accreditation process is slower than we expected but things are on the right track. The Minister of Higher education has approved our Academic tutelage with the Government University of Maroua, which is a major milestone. Pray that the next steps will go smoothly and swiftly. For our theological programs, our university is in good standing with a regional accrediting agency, Conseil des Initiatives Theologiques en Afrique (CITAF). We have also started the process with another accrediting agency, the Accrediting Council for Theological Education in Africa (ACTEA) and we plan to connect with two additional international agencies in the following weeks, the Lord willing. Our commitment is to providing biblically grounded and excellent academic training to our students.
Before closing, I am pleased that many students will be able to graduate this year among which Alphonse Teyabe who is earning his PhD in Intercultural Studies (see picture below). He wrote his dissertation on “The Contribution of Evangelical Radios to Christian Mission in Northern Cameroon”. He will be able to come to the United States for the defense of his dissertation within the facilities of one our partnering institutions in Pasadena, California. Other students will defend their Masters thesis and doctoral dissertations in Yaoundé just before the leadership conference. Alphonse Teyabe is the current general Secretary of the Intervarsity Fellowship of Evangelical Students in Cameroon and also the General secretary of the brand new Association of Evangelicals in Cameroon. Our university is very pleased to see that God has allowed us to train such a key leader that will continue to influence key leaders in our nations and beyond for years to come. You made the right choice by coming alongside us. May the Lord allow you to see more fruits of your support, friendship and faithful investment in our common university!
With deepest gratitude in the Lord,
Rector of FUID/IUDI