Published on December 5, 2022  
Mbanda headshot

Laurent Mbanda, archbishop of the Province of the Anglican Church of Rwanda, will give the sermon, “Go and Be Fruitful,” for Samford University’s Beeson Divinity School Commencement and a Service of Consecration on Dec. 9.

Prior to becoming archbishop in 2018, Mbanda served as the bishop of the Shyira Diocese in Northern Rwanda since 2010. During his time as bishop, Mbanda had a special interest in the development of churches, clergy and lay leaders. He wrote about becoming a bishop in his book, From Barefoot to Bishop: A Rwandan Refugee’s Journey.

Mbanda also previously served for Compassion International in various roles, including vice president of program development, Christian Aid Mission and Christian African Leadership Ministries Inc., which he and his wife, Chantal, founded in 1991.

Mbanda holds degrees from Kenya Highlands Bible College, Fuller Seminary, Denver Seminary and Trinity International University. He’s also the author of Committed to Conflict: The Destruction of the Church in Rwanda.

Beeson Divinity School’s Commencement and a Service of Consecration will take place in Hodges Chapel at 11 a.m. on Dec. 9. Nineteen students are expected to receive the Master of Divinity degree.

Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.