New Protestant University of the Equator

Like the pioneers on the American frontier, Rev. Dr. Ferdinand Bambuli and his wife Mamie Nkulo Mptetsi Bambuli found daunting challenges on arriving in Bolenge at the Protestant University of the Equator (UPE) two years ago. Founded with the support of three church bodies in the province in 1995, the UPE now trains 53 future church leaders in its theology faculty. Ten of these students are women.

A 2006 graduate of the Protestant University of the Congo (UPC), Dr. Bambuli and his wife, a former Deputy in the National Assembly in Kinshasa, gladly accept the role of helping build up the new University. “With all the help I received from them in my studies, I must work for the Church”, Dr. Bambuli, Vice President of the UPE, explains. He points to the need of Congo’s fast growing Disciples denomination for trained pastors as another motive for their work at UPE. He notes that the library, although modest in size, is the only theology library in the area.

Among the accomplishments of the past year are the purchase of a generator which encourages creation of a web site and enables the use of the three computers available for the students. Mme. Nkulo, Finance Administrator, proudly speaks of the classes she teaches for the wives of students.

Dr. Bambuli also serves as an advisor to the Provincial Assembly in Mbandaka and Mme. Nkulo does not rule out running for election as Deputy in this year’s November election. Whether or not they continue their political involvement, their example of sacrifice and service bodes well for the Congo and the churches which benefit from the new university in their province.

Doug Smith wrote this article for the UPC News November 2010 newsletter. The News is the publication of the North American Liaison Bureau (NALB) of the UPC with Ben Hobood, volunteer Executive Director. Write Ben at

To contribute to the UPC or to the UPE, send a note with your check to Global Ministries, P.O. Box 1986, Indianapolis, IN 46206-1986


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