Jean Claude Maleka
Church development and pastoral training in the East Africa Annual Conference from a base in Busia, Kenya
Location: Kenya, Africa
Home Country: DRCongo, Africa
The Rev. Jean Claude Masuka Maleka is a United Methodist missionary with the General Board of Global Ministries assigned to church development and pastoral training in the East Africa Annual Conference from a base in Busia, Kenya.
The East Africa Annual Conference covers five countries--Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Sudan, and Uganda--with diverse languages and cultures. Burundi and Rwanda have French-speaking backgrounds, while Kenya and Uganda are English-speaking, and Arabic is the dominant language in Sudan. There is a strong need for coordination of pastoral training and the development of educational resources relevant to the different cultures within the conference.
Jean Claude can speak and read six languages, including English, French, Portuguese, Swahili, Kiokwe, and Bemba, the last two being Bantu in origin.
A consecrated deacon of the South Congo Annual Conference, Jean Claude was born into a United Methodist parsonage in Kolwezi in the Katanga Province of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). He attended secondary school at Kitabataba Institute at the United Methodist Mission in Mulungwishi. He earned a Bachelor of Education degree in history and social science from the Institute of Teachers in Lubumbashi, and a Master of Arts degree in peace and governance from Africa University, the United Methodist institution in Mutare, Zimbabwe. He has a long-standing affiliation with the United Methodist Jerusalem Parish in Lubumbashi, where he has worked in Christian education and youth ministry.
Prior to entering the graduate program at Africa University in 2007, Jean Claude worked for a bank, and from 2000 to 2005 was a "Missioner of Hope for the Children of Africa" through the short-term United Methodist program. He became a deacon in 2003.
His decision to seek a degree in peace and governance was influenced by the civil strife in Congo and other parts of Africa. His desire to seek further service was strongly honed by experience in preaching while on a six-month trip to visit family in Eastern Angola. "I was inspired to serve as a missionary," he says, "to assist the church to consolidate peace building and initiate development projects for the church to grow. I felt that the words of John Wesley, 'the world is my parish,' were alive in my life...I am deeply committed to the development of a viable church that can help address the critical needs of the community that emerge from times of crisis."
Jean Claude is married to Francine Ilunga Mpnga Mufuk. The couple has two children, Berthe Mafefe Maleka, born in 2001, and Ephraim Masuka Maleka, born in 2004.
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