An alternative way of constructing manhood.

My name is Rev. Jerry Dooyum. I was born to the family of a retired Nigerian Army Captain, David Atindi- Orpin, in Gboko, Benue State of Nigeria, on 3rd September, 1977. My father’s family is a polygamous one where he had married up to nine wives. Five of these have died (my mother inclusive); two of them have been divorced, while the other two wives who seemed to be living together with my father have also separated from him since the year 2016. My mother, Patricia, divorced my father in 1979, when I was two years. She died in 1999.

When I was a little child, I was nurtured and taken care of by my step-mother, Esther, who was my father’s first wife. She played a very significant parental role in my life; a role that always made me cry whenever I remember the violence she suffered from my father; an abuse that led to her illness and later her painful death.

At the age of six in 1983, I began my primary education which I completed in 1989. In 1990, I began my secondary education, which I was supposed to complete in 1995, but as a result of financial constraint, I was dropped out of school. I went back to school in 1996 and got my Senior Secondary School Certificate (SSCE) in June, 1998. I, thereafter, went back to college (College of Advance and Professional Studies) for a Diploma certificate, but was once again dropped out of school in the year 2001 for lack of funding. I went back home and waited patiently on God. While I waited, I engaged myself in farming and other petty-jobs. As a very hardworking young man, I earned a comfortable living from my farm produce and minor jobs I used to do.

In 2009, I received a pastoral calling and was enrolled in the Reformed Theological Seminary, Mkar. This is a seminary that has been established and managed by a Church I have been a member since 1987. This Church goes by the name Universal Reformed Christian Church (URCC). It is a church that was started by three Missionaries from the Dutch Reformed Church in 1911. In 2013, I graduated from the seminary, and was called by the Seminary governing council to be one of the Seminary’s academic staff in 2014. I also received my pastoral ordination in that very year. In a quest to obtain a higher certificate in order to be a more qualified academic staff of the Seminary, I sought admission from Stellenbosch University which I was accepted in 2015. I did my Post Graduate Diploma in Theology in 2015.

At presence, I am writing my Master’s degree (MTh- New Testament) thesis, on the book of John 7:53-8:11. My research focus is to challenge patriarchal hegemonies (or patriarchal dominance) in Nigeria. Patriarchy has been one of the major social problems which have subjected Nigerian women to various forms of violence by men. As I have mentioned above, my lovely late mothers, Patricia (my biological mother) and Esther (my step mother) suffered the shackles of patriarchy. It is my desire to suggest an alternative way of constructing manhood. In this way, men would be encouraged to emulate the exemplary life of Jesus Christ as portrayed in John 7:53-8:11. He was an ideal masculine figure who was moulded by an androcentric culture of his time within which he also grew up. Yet, he chose to act contrary to the cultural values of his time. Occasionally, Jesus is seen in the Gospel engaging with or practicing the patriarchal system of the society in which he was born into. However, this does not changed his attitude toward the women he came in contact with. This is a credible example which men of the 21st century must emulate.

I am happily married to Mrs Nancy Ngunan Orpin. We have been married since 2004. We are blessed with lovely children.