Musings From the Road
We are joyous to announce that Biking Bob's final book, Pastors, Chiefs, and Warlords, launches in May!
As many of you know, Bob was working on the manuscript of this book at the time of his unexpected death. Our dear friend Dr. Kate Koppy (lead editor on The Last Missionary) has used her storytelling expertise to further develop what he had written, filling in gaps with portions of Bob's handwritten journals as well as interviews with Rev. Joseph Mulongo, Rev. Jacky Mwayuma, and seminarian Shabana Banza. The final result is a powerfully-told story and a moving meditation.
If you, your congregation, or book club would like to host an online gathering with me, Kate, Joseph, Jacky, or Shabana, please don't hesitate to be in touch. For those living in/near Indiana, Joseph is available to physically travel to your event.
Pastors, Chiefs, and Warlords: The Ministry of being With
Written as of series of reflections, this book is a conversation-shifting exploration of how the church understands the role of missionaries and their work. On bicycle and riverboat journeys totaling more than 2,000 kilometers, Bob's team visits pastors, chiefs, and warlords in remote towns, including Rev. Jacky Mwayuma, who was appointed to serve a community that had been ravaged by the recent war. As readers are pulled deeper into this voyage, they are invited to wrestle with increasingly challenging questions about the mission of the church, the global economy, neocolonialism, savior complexes, racism, war, and justice. This book follows The Last Missionary, but it also stands on its own as a complete work.
Copies can be ordered via Wipf and Stock or your local bookseller. (Book launch: May 2022)
Praise for this book:
"I urge all members of Christ's body to engage in dialogue with Bob's personal accounts to deepen their understanding of God's mission, especially when called to serve in challenging areas such as the North Katanga area in the Democratic Republic of the Congo."
-MANDE MUYOMBO, resident bishop, North Katanga Area of the United Methodist Church, Democratic Republic of the Congo
"People like Bob Walters are the reason I remain a Christian. His thoughtfulness, his love for the powerless end poor, his enduring wisdom, are still very much present even after his passing. This book, like Bob, is a rich treasure."
-PHILIP GULLEY, author of If the Church Were Christian
"Bob Walters's singular understanding of the changing dynamics of Christian missions and the inherent self-sufficiency of local communities should be read and studied by missiologists and Christian leaders the world over. His use of reflective observations told through the narrative of his engagements with the people of the Democratic Republic of the Congo carry the reader along on the 'adventure' while helping us see the missteps of the past and the potential for the future."
-J. RICHARD ELLIS, John Brown University, emeritus
"This post-humorous publication of Bob Walters gives a disturbing and yet
hope-giving picture of village life and the entanglement between mission, war, development, and dependency. It reveals careful observation, deep listening, and an honest (self) critique of coloniality and white racism. It shows a way beyond stereotypes about Africans, missionaries, and Christianity, stimulating a serious rethinking of mission, development, and church leadership."
-JNJ KRITZINGER, University of South Africa, emeritus