Launch of the Founding Chapter of the Friends of DACB

On Wednesday, September 28, 2022 a small group of friends from the former Overseas Ministries Study Center (OMSC) and St. John’s Episcopal Church gathered at Oden House, in New Haven (CT) to celebrate the launch of the Founding Chapter of the Friends of DACB. Dr. Nimi Wariboko (DACB Executive Committee chair), Dr. Dana Robert (CGCM Director, DACB Executive Committee), Dr. Kyama Mugambi (Assistant Professor Yale Divinity School) and Dr. Michael Glerup (Director, Center for Early African Christianity) were among the attendees. Over a delicious meal cooked by Judy Stebbins who was aided by Chee Seng and Sharon Yip (former OMSC staff), guests heard two short presentations. In the first, Dr. Wariboko gave an introduction to the DACB’s mission, and in the second, Executive Director Dr. Michele Sigg gave an overview of recent and ongoing initiatives entitled “In pursuit of conversion, connection, and restoration: The Dictionary of African Christian Biography, 2012 to 2022.”

Dr. Sigg announced the appointment of Mrs. Judy Stebbins as chair of the Friends of DACB. The creation of the Friends of DACB was Mrs. Stebbins’ idea and generous initiative, as well as a mark of her deep friendship for DACB Founding Director Emeritus Jonathan Bonk (CGCM Faculty Associate) and Dr. Sigg. Mrs. Stebbins worked for many years in fundraising and development at Yale before becoming director of finance and housing at OMSC (2003-2019). From 2002 to 2015, she raised a million dollars in reserve funds for the Community Dining Room in Branford.

The Friends of DACB is a community of individuals invested in the work of world Christianity/mission, global networks, scholarship, theological education, and shalom in the church in Africa. The particular focus of the Friends of DACB is to support the work of the Dictionary of African Christian Biography Project by assisting with:

  • Promotion: Publicizing the mission of the DACB, and recruiting writers, instructors, and institutions in view of gathering more content.
  • Financial sustainability: Providing a core amount of money to sustain the project and help it to grow into the future.
  • Networking: Helping to find collaborators in academia, web development, publishing houses, church leadership, mission agencies, educational institutions.
  • Prayer for the DACB / JACB and all those working for it.

It is the hope of all involved that this founding chapter will be one of several groups of “Friends of DACB” across the continent.
We invite you to join!

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