FOR two consecutive years the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Namibia (ELCIN) was unable to enrol new candidate pastors at the United Theological Seminary Paulinum in Windhoek due to financial constraints.
This was revealed by ELCIN’s presiding bishop Shekutamba Nambala when he delivered his State of the Church Address at Oniipa earlier this week.
The dire straits the Seminary is facing came to light earlier this year when the institution cancelled its January intake amid reports that the Pionierspark-based institution owes close to N$1 million in municipal bills.
The Seminary is jointly owned by ELCIN and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in the Republic of Namibia (ELCRN).
ELCIN is Namibia’s biggest Christian denomination.
In 2018, the number of ELCIN members stood at 853 522.
The Church has partitioned the country into two dioceses; 21 deaneries and 153 parishes served by 185 pastors and 42 deacons.
According to Nambala, the Oshaango parish in the Ohangwena Region is the most populous with 15 177 congregants. The Rosh Pinah parish in the //Karas Region is the least populous, having only six members.
Besides pastors and deacons, ELCIN also employs 350 workers and has 5 422 volunteers.
Bishop Nambala further revealed that Sunday church service attendance decreased from 2 436 806 in 2017 to 2 141 528 in 2020.