The leaders, supporters and friends of Life Abundant believe that our shared mission of social transformation is best promoted by robustly equipping emerging agents of change so they can serve any faith community positioned to proclaim, as well as embody the love and truth of God. Life Abundant was thus established within the Faculty of Theology at the University of Pretoria for the advancement of ministry training, so that future pastors and teachers, activists and counsellors alike could be richly and meaningfully empowered.
Life Abundant provides two students of Theology, from the start of their second year at the University of Pretoria through the end of any Honours degree programme they might pursue, with a scholarship that covers half of their tuition costs. This award is renewable annually, for as long as the students, one male and one female, meet with success in the classroom and demonstrate an enduring potential for promoting Christian values in their personal and professional lives.
In consultation with experts from the fields of Church History and Religious Ethics, Biblical Studies and Practical Theology, Life Abundant awards research grants each year to students working on an advanced qualification, namely a Masters or Doctoral degree. These grants are intended to serve as monthly income stipends for the award recipients, so that they will be free to assist in the campaigns of investigation and innovation led by the various centres and institutes nested within the Faculty.
Life Abundant invests in numerous projects and outreaches designed by cohorts of current students which add immediate value to local communities, not to mention lasting depth to their theological studies. Such engagement with the broader world has included, in recent years, mission trips to African villages, study excursions to European cities, and internships on university campuses in America, each one made possible, to some extent, through this Fund and its generous partners.
Total Contributions - 2017
Total Contributions - 2016
Success Stories - 2017
In July, the leadership of Life Abundant expanded the means by which it supports Theology students at the University of Pretoria by providing several of them with housing subsidies, travel assistance and meal vouchers. Over and above the cost of tuition and books, young adults working toward advanced qualifications still face the challenge of meeting these ordinary living expenses, so it was an honour and a privilege for Life Abundant to help in such critical areas. In so doing, the fund was given fresh opportunity to demonstrate its concern for the students on campus.
In March, three scholars from the Faculty of Theology – one working toward a Bachelors degree, one working toward an Honours degree, and one working toward a Masters degree – applied for tuition assistance through Life Abundant. Given the broad spectrum of their personal backgrounds, and the individual potential for ministry demonstrated by each, the applications put forward by these gentleman were successful in the end. Back on campus and sitting in class, they add just the kind of diversity and creativity Life Abundant seeks to promote within the University of Pretoria community.
In January, a young theologian from Congo wanted to begin the final year of his Masters programme in the Faculty of Theology at the University of Pretoria, but lacked the fiscal resources to register. Because his area of inquiry, namely the agency of the Pauline gospel within the Book of Revelation, is relevant for the public, eschatological discourse of our day, members of the Life Abundant advisory council awarded him a sizable research grant which opened the way for enrolment, and enabled this scholar to begin the final leg of his academic journey.
Success Stories - 2016
In October, a student within the Faculty of Theology applied for a travel grant through Life Abundant so that she could spend a portion of the 2017 academic year in Tubingen, Germany. While abroad, this young theologian will have the opportunity to improve her linguistic skills, and advance her understanding of cultural diversity in a social context of rich Christian heritage. For this reason, the leaders of Life Abundant approved her application, and agreed to cover half the cost of her commute up north.
In July, members of the student group within the Faculty, namely House Theology, spent their volunteer time on Mandela Day alongside of residents from an informal settlement in the far east of Pretoria, bringing with them essential items perpetually in short supply amongst the urban poor, including tinned food, hygienic products and a cheque, drawn from Life Abundant resources, for the operational expenses incurred by the preschool, Pure Hope Kids, with which the students worked to make this intervention a success.
In June, several students from the University of Pretoria participated in a mission trip to Botswana, organised by a Dutch-Reformed congregation in South Africa. One such student was sponsored by Life Abundant, so that he could join the others as they reached out to rural families through Windows of Hope, an organisation which offers practical assistance to those in need. Both while teaching lessons from the Bible to children, and when helping adults with tasks involving manual labour, these young people represented the Faculty with distinction.
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Last edited by Judith FourieEdit