USC Dornsife College Of Letters Arts and Sciences

University of Southern California

Wanjiru M. Gitau is a co-director in a planning grant funded by the Templeton World Charity Foundation (TWCF). Along with Professor Bryan Froehle of St. Thomas University in Miami, she is designing a large global project to investigate the connections between spirituality, pluralism and progress.

Gitau has more than fifteen years of experience working and researching with the highly dynamic and globally engaged middle-class congregations, Nairobi Chapel and Mavuno Church. She also has worked with student communities and among Chinese immigrants in Nairobi. She has researched extensively in Southeast and East Asia, Africa, Europe, South America and North America. During her doctoral studies, she was the project manager of the Center for World Christianity, and a Teaching Fellow at Africa International University. She has taught on young adults’ spiritual development at Asbury Theological Seminary.

Gitau has a PhD in World Christianity from Africa International University in partnership with University of Edinburgh. She is also a linguistics and literature major from the University of Nairobi. Her book, A Home for a Homeless Generation: Rethinking the Megachurch Narrative in Light of Mavuno Church in Nairobi, is presently under review for publication. She also is working on a new book, Evangelicalism in the Global South, and is co-editing Urban Christian Revitalization in Eastern Africa with Georges Pirworth Atido. She conducted research with the Africa Leadership Survey. The publication of this research, African Christian Leadership, will be out in Fall 2017. In addition to English and Swahili, Gitau is fluent in French and speaks conversational Chinese.

Areas of Expertise

  • Megachurches
  • Congregational leadership
  • Community Engagement
  • Global-cultural exchange (partnerships, missions, short-term trips)
  • World Christianity
  • Religious Pluralism
  • Old and new religious movements
  • Sub-Saharan Africa
  • Post-colonialism
  • Terrorism
  • Global Geopolitics

Click here for her Linkedin profile.

Wanjiru M. Gitau