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Tribute to the late Rev Amanda Shipman

2021-02-12  Staff Reporter

Tribute to the late Rev Amanda Shipman
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Reverend Jan Scholtz

It is never an easy task to bid farewell to someone you have known for such a long time through the grid of life as I am doing it now with a broken heart to the late Amanda. 

In my personal understanding, United Congregational Church of Southern Africa (UCCSA) has been robbed of one of the illustrious ministers of the present time, her achievements and legacy will forever live on amongst the Namibian people. 

Amanda came into ordination long after she has trained and served as a secondary school teacher, a field she did not choose until 1980. (Congregational chronicle of March. 1995 p7) She said “ordained ministry lured me from the time I was 18 years old. 

However, for many reasons, I did not choose to study for ordination until 1980.” 

I met the late Amanda in the early 90s when she came to Lüderitz as a minister for the Lüderitz congregational church, which she spearheaded until the year 2004.

She performed a transformational role in the lives of many UCCSA members and went as far as the entire Lüderitz community residents and beyond, and her contribution in skilful workshops and training, as well as spiritual upliftment of people’s lives, will forever be cherished.

Amongst some of her notable achievement, she has set up a pastoral mansion, future ministerial funds, food bank basket, and Lüderitz ministerial fellowships group.

Amanda actively participated in the setup of the Keetmanshoop extension church

Proven to be one of the best characters and bright knowledge, Amanda served during her last days in the country as a Namibia Synod secretary from 2005-2007, where she represented Namibia in various occasions at the UCCSA assembly.

During my theological study as a student, she could go extra-miles in assisting us as theological conveners, in her own words, coming to Lüderitz Amanda said “I became pastor to a congregation. I am trying in this position to share with people all the gifts I have received from others so that together we may hear God speaking to us. Creating a new understanding of self – other – God.” (Congregational chronicle of March 1995, p 7). Archbishop Oscar Romero once said and I quote “we are not master builders, but co-workers, we lay the foundation and others build on it” Little did I knew that she was just laying the foundation on which I and others build on, just as I have followed in her footsteps at the time, she left Namibia back to the USA in 2007. 

This brought me back to a bible text, Proverbs 31v 29-30 many women have done excellently, but you surpassed them all. 30 Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised. “Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints.” Precious because their death is not death but life through faith in our Lord, Jesus Christ. (Psalm 116:15).

May Her Soul Rest in Eternal Peace.

2021-02-12  Staff Reporter

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