AMSF updated article on Luis Samacumbi_for submission to Africa


AMSF updated article on Luis Samacumbi_for submission to Africa
Luis Samacumbi, a prominent lay church leader
and emerging Angolan author.
Posted on AMSF website under What’s
New, February 2016
Work experience: Luis Samacumbi is well known to
the Angola Memorial Scholarship Fund (AMSF) and
other international NGOs, in his former role as
executive director of DASEP - the social development
branch of the Evangelical Congregational Church of
Angola (IECA). AMSF relied on Luis Samacumbi to
provide excellent AMSF-funded project reports.
Luis Samacumbi now works as a program specialist for
gender issues at UNFPA - United Nations Population
Fund, in Angola. He continues to work for IECA as
Director of the IECA Department of Resource
Mobilization and Institutional Development. Luis is
currently enrolled in the distance education Master of
Divinity Program of the Chicago Theological Seminary,
affiliated with the United Church of Christ. He is a
graduate of the Masters of Peace and Conflict
Resolution Studies of the University Kwazulu Natal,
Durban – South Africa.
Luis Samacumbi at his work desk in the
UN, Luanda office-LS photo collection
Personal Background: Luis Samacumbi was caught
up in the Angolan civil war as a child soldier1. For many
years his friends and colleagues encouraged him to
write about his remarkable life journey from the
suffering of war to his work for peace and
reconstruction through Angolan church and NGO
Writing and Publishing: Luis began writing his
memoirs in 2010. He self-published them in Portuguese
Luis Samacumbi inspecting the family farm
in the book, Pilares de Sucesso/Pillars of Success, in
with a view to putting it back in production
2012. Luis created his own publishing company, Livros after decades of civil war (Nazareth
Village- Border between Huambo and
K.Sul Provinces) LS photo collection
Olohengo /Angolan Wild Plum Books in order to obtain an ISBN number and to thus enter
the official international registry of books.
Luis Samacumbi attributes his resilient success in part to a series of extraordinary Angolan
mentors. One of the most important to him is Rev. Jose
Belo Chipenda, an elder statesman of IECA. Luis
Samacumbi’s second self-published book is a
biography, in Portuguese, of Rev Chipenda2, which is
entitled Construindo Pontes/Building Bridges. This book
was launched in late 2012 in Lobito, the present home
community of Rev Chipenda. The launch which
honoured Rev. Chipenda was attended by government
representatives and received national media attention.
In 2014 Luis Samacumbi wrote a book of reflections on
the faith that can sustain us in turbulent times. Its title is
A fé além do impossível/ A faith beyond the impossible.
The cover page image is of the sea parting before the
person of faith.
Also, in 2014, Luis Samacumbi authored a book on the
life of the first Ochimbundu woman ordained by IECA,
Rev. Ilda Valerio. It is entitled O farol de esperança/ The
lighthouse of hope. As Luis writes in his introduction, Rev.
Ilda has been another important mentor to him. She has
also become a mother to him following the sudden death
of his own mother in his early adulthood.
Above:L- R: Luis Samacumbi , Rev. Jose
Chipenda, and Scout leader Lito Sacoco at
Canata School (Lobito, 2013). LS photo
Below: Rev. Ilda Valerio, Canata.School, .
(2009). Photo by Jean Burgess
In 2015, Luis Samacumbi wrote a fifth book, on the life of
Rev Julio Francisco, the former Secretary General of
IECA (1983 – 1997), who provided leadership to IECA
during the challenging times of the civil war. The book is
entitled Uma Voz de Fé em Tempos Difíceis/ A voice of
faith in difficult times. It was the family of Rev Julio
Francisco, now deceased, who asked Luis to write this
book, so that the inspiration of Rev. Francisco’s life and
words might be shared with future generations of IECA.
Note: Rev Jose Chipenda’s wife, Eva Chipenda has written her memoirs in an English book entitled The
Visitor: An African Woman’s Story of Travel and Discovery. It was published in 1996 by the World Council of
Churches as Volume 73 of the Risk Book Series.
Announcement of the launching of Luis Samacumbi’s fifth book, ‘A voice of faith in difficult times’.
Besides self publishing his own books, Luis Samacumbi has published several books by other
Angolans writers: O papel da Sociedade no cumprimento da missão da escola/ The role of
society in the school’s mission (2015) by Matos Enoque, Buscando sabedoria nos contos/,
Seeking Wisdom in Tales (and proverbs) (2015) by Frederico Pascoal York and Viajando de
Bela Vista à Cachiungo/Travelling from Bela Vista to Cachiungo (2015) by Anastácio César
Luis Samacumbi’s writings, and other publications of Livros Olohengo, are valuable resources
for Angolan educational institutions ranging from seminaries, to church-run and public
schools, to universities. Luis Samacumbi’s writings and others published by Livros Olohengo
are also of interest to academics and friends of Angola in North America and elsewhere.
AMSF has supported Luis Samacumbi through a contribution to the printing costs of 4 of his
books, from a gift designated in memory of Dr. George Burgess. George Burgess had worked
closely with Luis Samacumbi, then director of DASEP, on the administration of the Rotary
International Phase I & II project to fund the start up of 10 IECA health clinics, from 20032006 and 2007-2010.
Books are very expensive in Angola, up to 200% of
Canadian prices. The AMSF print grants are making
Luis’ Samacumbi’s books more financially accessible
to Angolan readers.
Rev. Ilda Valerio, Canata Elementary
School, 2009. Photo by Jean Burgess
Luis Samacumbi’s books can be obtained directly from
him at [email protected]
George Burgess and Luis Samacumbi,
during Luis' visit in June 2006 to Chesley,
ON Rotary Club and local St John's United
Church of Canada. Photo by Ken Burgess

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