Testimony from OCMS:
By: Wonsuk Ma
Atiku is a Nigerian scholar at the Oxford Centre for Mission Studies. Born into a Muslim family in northern Nigeria, he grew up witnessing religious conflicts. When he became a Christian in his youth, his challenging inter-religious journey began. Even today, half of his family (including extended one) is still Muslim. While trying to promote a peaceful inter-religious living, especially in work places, where ordinary Christians and Muslims live and work together, he has also made a striking discovery. Less than two decades ago, even if the religious composition in the area was not much different from today’s, life was far more peaceful. Bombing, burning or killing were rare; everyone seemed to accept the complex religious reality of the region. He was convinced that it was politicians, both Christian and Muslim, who took this delicate balance for their own benefit. This resulted in aggravating religious tension in the area, as the politicians fed on the religious tension.
When he began his PhD study, he had to face another challenge: he is a dyslexic. He had to spend far more time in study than any other student. Recent increasing violence further strengthened his determination to complete his study. He is even more convinced that both Christians and Muslims have been deceived to destroy each other. Atiku is about to complete the first version of his thesis draft. He, along with 120 other colleagues, help make OCMS a super-special place.