The Nazarene Education and Clergy Development is a ministry branch of the Church concerned with the strategic use of education in pursuit of:
- Providing training for glocal – that is, integrated global and local – leadership;
- Resourcing, reviewing, restoring and resuscitating educational systems;
- Developing character to enable cutting edge leadership within context; and
- Clergy development.
The ministry has a vision geared towards resourcing and revitalizing students and Christian leaders to effectively grow in their calling.
By developing the educational system, we aim to help each one focus on being a brand ambassador of their school whatever the academic discipline they pursue. This ought to reflect in each one of our students focusing on some part of ministry that is transformational in their communities and in their context.” Education in Africa requires knowledge and understanding pertaining to the context within which the message of the Gospel is imparted. The NECD encourages inclusive conversations around the Word in all educational formats.
The NECD encourages clergy and Christian leaders to pursue a lifestyle of lifelong learning and personal development. It periodically also hosts Pastors and Lay Leaders’ Conferences (PALCONs), which focus on clergy development. The most recent of these was held in October 2016 in Zambia, under the theme “Speaking to the Called” in light of the Church’s 2020 vision which aims to see a membership increase to over a million for the Africa Region. In order for us to be good stewards of this increase we will have to see an increase in the training of well developed ordained clergy.
The ministry has a vision to create District Pastors’ Forums in order to make engagement with the local church context more location-specific so that optimal effectiveness is achieved when talking applied theology. “The ministry also envisages the development of specialized Think Tanks and Task Teams that will produce African audio-Visual and written resources for lifelong-learning resources. The office is also busy with curriculum re/validation and re/affirmation, which is a rigorous standardization tool for the pastoral development departments in our schools to keep inline with our global network of sister institutions under the stringent auspices International Board of Education (IBOE).
We are also always looking for collaborative engagements with global partners that will take our schools and Pastors’ Fora to new levels of development.
The NECD ministry enjoys occupation in a diverse spectrum of spaces including rural, semi-urban and peri-urban, but has a passion for “wearing the overalls” while seeking to empower a more urban ministry approach. Cities are concentrated with people, which makes the urban space one where God is actively involved, and one where His work can be performed through bodies such as the NECD. Also, the ministry aims to facilitate the development of clergy that is conversant in practical theological subjects that will be closely related to the local Church.
Coordinator, Rev. Gabriel Benjiman, explains that “we cannot experience fire without light, nor can we experience light without fire, and such is the nature of the relationship between Higher Education and Clergy Development. The two, work hand-in-hand and there cannot be one without the other”.
Africa Regional Education Coordinator – Rev. Gabriel Benjiman