Appreciating UCU

Being on home assignment, and talking about Uganda, makes me reflect further about what I both love and appreciate about Uganda and UCU. Articles like this one exemplify it. 

The flagship university in Uganda, Makerere, has been besieged by strikes, from students and staff alike. To say that things are not easy is an understatement. 

As the article points out, in 19 years as a university, we have never had a strike. Now, things are not easy for us either. Let me walk in the light and point out that the First Lady is a recent alumnus, sonit behooves her to paint us favorably. But we strive to have a good working relationship between staff and students, and I think it shows. 

This is but one of the reasons I am proud to be associated with UCU. We strive to work through our differences in light of Matthew 18. It is not easy. And yet, the fruit of such striving is a university that has never experienced a strike in 19 years, and they are sadly common at Makerere. 

I am grateful that in the press, our graduates are routinely praised for their integrity and positive contributions to the workforce, and the culture in general. May the Lord continue to guide us. 

Continue Reading

Things I miss about Uganda

Now, don’t get me wrong. It is absolutely fabulous to be in the US with my people. That is balm to my soul. The smooth, lit roads and snazzy internet speeds are only perks of being here. However, over the last few weeks that I’ve been here, I’ve realized that there are several things I…

Continue Reading

Art in the Library

The other day I went to the Ham Mukasa Library, the gorgeous and (relatively) new building on campus. The architecture is stunning, and I’m more than a little jealous that theology is not included in this building: we now have the old library building all to ourselves.  I knew that the library was going to…

Continue Reading

How to finish collecting your data

1. Get in the car to drive to chapel so you can go to Kampala directly after, and learn the battery is dead. 2. Wonder why you failed to get jumper cables after the last time you had to jump-start a car (not my own). 3. Freak out about getting to Kampala. 4. Go to…

Continue Reading

Queen’s cakes and focus groups

When I began the data collection phase of my research, I knew that scheduling the interviews, and especially the focus groups, was going to be exciting.  I knew the clergy interviews would be relatively easy to schedule; I know most of the clergy, and for the ones I don’t know, we have the bond of…

Continue Reading

Igniting an inadvertent firestorm

As we were wrapping up our discussion on the second half of Ecclesiastes yesterday, I inadvertently ignited a bit of a firestorm.  We were talking about how none of us knows the day that we will die, and a student offered that his grandfather, at the age of 112, one day announced that he would…

Continue Reading

A new way to be invited

I am forever amazed at how obliquely polite people can be in Uganda.  Tonight, a student asked me to preach at the leadership handover for his fellowship on Sunday, which I am honored and delighted to accept.  But naturally, he couldn’t just ask.  The conversation went something like this: Joseph: Reverend, I am inviting you…

Continue Reading

Age, culture, and Articles collide 

Yesterday during discipleship, it was a bit rainy, so we shoved 10 people in my office. The way the chairs had to be configured, one of the girls was in danger of being shoved into a corner, and I said, ” ‘Nobody puts Baby in a corner!’ Who knows what movie that’s from?” I thought…

Continue Reading

Love-hate Wednesdays

I have a love-hate relationship with Wednesdays. We start the day with Bible Exposition at 7:30 am, and end with discipleship from 4-6 pm. In between are meetings and lectures. It’s a long, but good, day. I always give my discipleship groups a lot of latitude in whatever they want to do for the semester;…

Continue Reading