Labour of love from the man who built Methodist

Book titled "God's Calling"

Book titled "God’s Calling" authored by Dr Daniel M’Mutungi as pictured on May 20, 2023.

Photo credit: Francis Nderitu | Nation Media Group

Any Christian involved in the ministry of Jesus Christ, will acknowledge that God’s calling is all about staying the course, even in the face of adversity. That is precisely the story of Dr Daniel M’Mutungi and his late wife Evangeline Kajugu in their compelling memoir titled God’s Calling: The Daring Adventure of a Clergy Couple.

Interspersed with relevant Bible verses, the book provides a panoramic view of the couple’s lives over a four-decade period; from their courtship to marriage, work life, family life, education and countless other aspects of their lives until Evangeline’s demise in 2018.

Other than their steadfast commitment to each other and to the ministry in 43 years of marriage, theirs is also an uplifting story that brings out the virtue of patience in the daily life of a Christian.

For a start, here is a couple that had to postpone their wedding for two years before eventually tying the knot in faraway Manchester and not their native Meru, as they had initially planned. Thereafter, the couple persevered seven long years of childlessness before becoming the parents of their two adopted children.

This is without mentioning the tough decisions that God’s calling presented Dr M’Mutungi right from the onset, including quitting his teaching job at Kabete Technical School in 1972 so as to fully embrace the ministry.

Dr M’Mutungi also shares his success, challenges, personal sacrifices he has had to make as well as the vital lessons he has learnt along the way in an admittedly fulfilling and rewarding ministry in the Methodist Church.

A lasting legacy for Dr M’Mutungi’s ministry is the role he played in the transformation of Methodist Training Institute into the present day Kenya Methodist University (Kemu).

“Kemu evolved from a humble beginning as Methodist Training Institute – the foundation upon which the giant university stands. The small one-campus college that I headed with a total student population of about 25 has grown into a fully-fledged university with an estimated student population of 9,300 students in three campuses,” Dr M’Mutungi writes in the book.

His was a labour of love that ultimately paid off handsomely for theologian and educationist by opening more doors for him to pursue his Masters and Doctoral degrees abroad.

On the flipside, among the low moments in Dr M’Mutungi’s life as documented in the book includes the passing on of his mother and, several years later, the death of his beloved wife Evangeline, a woman he says reinforced his value of sharing time and resources.

A true believer of the Biblical principle of marriage lasting as long as the two spouses are alive, Dr M’Mutungi, who had been widowed at the age of 72, was courageous enough to embark on a new beginning with Lucy Nyambura Muriithi, whom he married in 2020.

Just like in his first marriage to Evangeline, Dr M’Mutungi reveals that church ministry remains the core pillar of his second marriage.

“In the period that Lucy and I have been married, we have discovered our potential to minister to each other by facilitating each other to become the best we can be in God’s service, in the family and in the world. We are setting ourselves apart to serve God among His children in the world,” Dr M’Mutungi says in his book.

God’s Calling: The Daring Adventure of a Clergy Couple is both reflective and humorous in a Biblical manner. In sum, it’s one couple’s adventure of love and loss, faith and doubt, mystery and discovery, hope and despair, joy and sadness, loyalty and betrayal, right and wrong, marriage and remarriage.
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