Honorary DD Conferred upon Centre Alumna, Professor Esther Mombo

Professor Esther Mombo DD, on the 27th of November 2023. Photo by Douglas Robertson.

On the 27th of November 2023, Professor Esther Mombo, an alumna of the Centre, was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Divinity from the University of Edinburgh. Below is her speech delivered upon receiving the prestigious honor.


Exactly 25 years ago today I graduated with a PhD from this exact place. I was given powers to read and to do all that pertains to the degree. Today I have been conferred with a honorary degree in recognition of the work I have done after the PhD degree. 

I take this opportunity to thank my Ancestors on whose shoulders I have stood to be here today. I especially thank my late Grandmother Enis Mugesia Mkutu, my first theological educator who supported me to study theology when everybody thought I had lost my head as a young woman. I thank my parents Maria Vulimu Mombo and Stanely Mombo Maikuri; family, friends, colleagues, scholars, students, religious leaders here present and those watching this graduation online. I wish to thank St. Paul’s University, an institution that I have served over the years. Thank you all for believing in me and supporting me in this journey. 

After receiving a PhD in 1998, I entered a new space and life of serving in many capacities and growing people in different institutions. This meant moving between Circles of concerned theologians and squares of unconcerned theologians.1

Today I have  received a honorary PhD, in recognition of the work that I have done after my PhD. Indeed this honorary degree will open more spaces of service to God and humanity. 

So thank you the Centre for [the Study of] World Christianity and Edinburgh University for this honor.

Asante Sana
Embwo Muno 
Imbuya Mono

Recording of award and speeches.

  1. This is a play of words, as Professor Mombo is closely associated with an organisation known as the Circle of Concerned African Women Theologians. 
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About CSWCEdinburgh

The Centre for the Study of World Christianity (formerly, the Centre for the Study of Christianity in the Non-Western World) is a research centre in the School of Divinity in the University of Edinburgh.

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