The ‘How’ of Teaching Important, Too

GEMENA, DR CONGO (December 1, 2010) – When Evangelical Covenant Church missionary Fred Prudek taught at the Ubangi Protestant University in Gemena in November, his method also was part of the message, focusing on some topics that would not be of concern in a typical Western seminary.

Prudek, who serves in the Czech Republic, was invited by Mossai Sanguma, president of the Covenant Church of Congo (CEUM), to teach classes to pastors and seminarians at the school November 2-16. The school is a joint ministry of the CEUM and Free Evangelical Churches.

Using Genesis chapters 11-15, Prudek addressed issues such as marital strife and parenting issues. He also addressed polygamy, a cultural practice not uncommon in Congo. The issue is not simple. For example, what should a man do after becoming a Christian, when he already is married to more than one woman?

Prudek asked the students to consider how God uses suffering and trials to transform people into his likeness. In a country considered one of the poorest in the world and where wars have claimed millions of people, the subject is not merely academic.

Prudek also brought a different style of teaching. Traditionally classes are taught only in a lecture format. Prudek’s interactive approach introduced a new style of teaching that at least one faculty member says he will use in the future.

Ongoing discussions are exploring the possibility of inviting other teachers from the Evangelical Covenant Church to teach at the school, Prudek says.

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