Faithful Giving Keeps AU Relevant and Impactful

United Methodists are faithful, generous, and passionate about missional engagement. The depth of the denomination’s support for the ministry of Africa University was evident in 2020.

The Africa University Fund ended the year with overall giving at 88.37 percent—the highest percentage invested across all seven of the general church funds. Twenty-nine annual conferences achieved 100 percent of their budget commitment to Africa University.

Africa University students ramped up their service and outreach activities as the coronavirus pandemic evolved.“The dollars invested are vital, but those who give to Africa University are also modeling Christian love and discipleship in action,”  said Peter Mageto, the acting vice chancellor of Africa University.

“The leaders who are being nurtured by The United Methodist Church through Africa University share a personal experience of God’s grace that inspires them to be agents of change and vessels of grace wherever they find themselves,” Mageto said.

Local churches’ investment in the Africa University Fund, which helps to sustain day-to-day operations at the United Methodist-related institution, remained strong across the five U.S. jurisdictions of The United Methodist Church. The Western and Northeastern jurisdictions delivered overall support of 99.93 percent and 96.11 percent, respectively.

Remarkably, seven annual conferences invested more in 2020 than they did in 2019. In the Virginia Conference, where Bishop Sharma Lewis shared her desire to grow engagement with Africa University, congregations led with an investment of 102.91 percent.

Africa University's main campus is a safe learning environment for more than 200 students who could not get home or access online learning from home.“It is our experience that when we articulate the needs of the university and are able to show people where their investments are being used and the human good those dollars are doing, they respond,” said James Salley, Africa University’s chief advancement officer.

“The foundation for Africa University is the local church and that’s where we have our faith and trust,” said Salley. “We are thankful for the support of those persons who believe in the work that we do, especially during these challenging times.”

In 2020, the general church budget included a commitment of $2,347,217 to the Africa University Fund, of which $2,074,224 was realized. With the 2020 General Conference rescheduled to August/September 2022, the proposed 2021-2024 general church budget remains in limbo.