Desmond Tutu Biography
Desmond Tutu (Desmond Mpilo Tutu CH) was born on 7th October 1931 in Klerksdorp, South Africa. He is a South African social rights activist and retired Anglican bishop.
Desmond Tutu Education Background and Career
He studied teaching at the Pretoria Bantu Normal College from 1951 to 1953, and went on to teach at Johannesburg Bantu High School and at Munsienville High School in Mogale City. He later resigned following the passage of the Bantu Education Act
He coontinued his studies in Theology at St Peter’s Theological College in Rosettenville, Johannesburg, and in December 1961 was ordained as an Anglican priest
He attended King’s College London, (1962–1966), where he received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in theology.
He worked as a part-time curate, first at St Alban’s Church, Golders Green, and then at St Mary’s Church in Bletchingley, Surrey.
In 1967 he became the chaplain at the University of Fort Hare. From 1970 to 1972, Tutu lectured at the National University of Lesotho.
In 1972 he was appointed vice-director of the Theological Education Fund of the World Council of Churches, at Bromley in Kent. In 1975 he was appointed as the Dean of St Mary’s Cathedral in Johannesburg.
Desmond Tutu Archbishop
In 1960 Desmond Tutu was ordained as an Angelican priest becoming the first black Anglican Dean of Johannesburg in 1975 and the first black General Secretary of the South African Council of Churches four years later. He became well known for his commitment to non-violence and for his support for economic sanctions against apartheid South Africa.
In 1986 Desmond Tutu was elected Archbishop of Cape Town, the highest position in the Anglican Church in South Africa.He is regarded as ‘South Africa’s moral conscience’, he speaks out against the apartheid regime and organised many peaceful demonstrations.
Desmond Tutu Truth and Reconciliation
In 1994 Desmond Tutu was appointed Chair of South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission to investigate apartheid-era crimes.His model was based on truth as a foundation for forgiveness and reconciliation, was central to healing South Africa’s divided society. He says, “Without forgiveness there can be no future for a relationship between individuals or within and between nations.”
Desmond Tutu Peace and Justice advocate.
Desmond Tutu returned from public life in 2010 but he continues to stand up for those who are oppressed, to raise awareness of global crises such as the AIDS pandemic and climate change, and to advance peace and reconciliation worldwide.
Through his foundation Desmond & Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation he works with the objective of promoting peace building through conflict resolution, fostering reconciliation and to cultivate accountable servant leadership.
Desmond Tutu Role during Apartheid
In 1976 they was protest in Soweto, known as ‘Soweto riots’ against the government’s use of Afrikaans as the compulsory language of instruction in black schools. Desmond Tutu supported an economic boycott. Desmond Tutu vigorously opposed the “constructive engagement” policy of the Reagan administration in the United States, which advocated “friendly persuasion”. Tutu pressed the advantage and organised peaceful marches which brought 30,000 people onto the streets of Cape Town.
In 1978 Desmond Tutu became the Secretary General of South African Council of Churches. He advocated for reconciliation between all parties involved in apartheid. He caompared apartheid to Nazism as a result his passport was revoked twice by the government and was even jailed briefly in 1980 after a protest march.
In 1983 during the proposed new constitution for South Africa to defend against the anti-apartheid movement, Desmond Tutu helped form the National Forum Committee to fight the constitutional changes.
In March 1988 he took up the cause of the Sharpeville Six who had been sentenced to death; opposed on principle to capital punishment, he called for their lives to be spared.He telephoned representatives of the U.S., British, and German governments urging them to pressure Botha on the issue,and personally met with Botha at the latter’s Tuynhuys home to discuss the issue. The two did not get on well, and argued. Both accused Desmond Tutu of supporting the ANC’s armed campaign; Tutu said that while he did not oppose their violence, he supported the ANC’s objective of a non-racial, democratic South Africa. The death sentences were ultimately commuted.
In 1990 together with ex-Vice-Chancellor of the University of the Western Cape Professor Jakes Gerwel they founded the Desmond Tutu Educational Trust. The Trust – established to fund developmental programmes in tertiary education – provides capacity building at 17 historically disadvantaged institutions. Tutu’s work as a mediator to prevent all-out racial war was evident at the funeral of South African Communist Party leader Chris Hani in 1993. Tutu spurred a crowd of 120,000 to repeat after him the chants, over and over: “We will be free!”, “All of us!”, “Black and white together!”
In 1994, Desmond Tutu was appointed a patron of the World Campaign Against Military and Nuclear Collaboration with South Africa, Beacon Millennium and Action from Ireland. In 1995, he was appointed a Chaplain and Sub-Prelate of the Venerable Order of Saint John by Queen Elizabeth II, and he became a patron of the American Harmony Child Foundation and the Hospice Palliative Care Association (HPCA) of South Africa
Desmond Tutu Nobel Peace Prize
In 1984 Desmond Tutu received the Nobel peace prize for his role in the opposition to apartheid in South Africa. In 1978 he was appointed the general secretary of the South African council of Churches and became a leading spokesperson for the rights of black South Africans. During the 1980’s he played an unrivaled role in drawing national and international attention to the iniquities of apartheid. He emphasized nonviolent means of protest and encouraged the application of economic pressure by countries dealing with South Africa.
Desmond Tutu Books
- 2016: The Book of Joy
- 2014: The Book of Forgiving.
- 2014: Let There Be Light
- God Is Not A Christian
- 2014: God’s Hands: The Archbishop of Canterbury’s Lent.
- 2014: Let There Be Light
- 2013: Desmond and the Very Mean Word
- 2011: Children of God Storybook Bible Deluxe Edition
- 2010: Made for Goodness: And Why This Makes All the Difference
- 2010: Children of God Storybook Bible
- 2008: God’s Dream
- 2004: God Has a Dream: A Vision of Hope for Our Time.
- 1999: No future without forgiveness
- 1994: An African Prayer Book
- 1989: Words of Desmond Tutu.
- 1983: Hope and Suffering
- The rainbow people of God.
- Crying in the Wilderness
Desmond Tutu Awards and Honours
- In 2013 he received the £1.1m ($1.6m) Templeton Prize for “his life-long work in advancing spiritual principles such as love and forgiveness”.
- 2010, his book Made for Goodness was awarded a Nautilus Book Award.
- He received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from US President Barack Obama.
- In 2009 he received the Spiritual Leadership Award from the international Humanity’s Team movement.
- In June 2009 he was awarded an honorary degree from Bangor University, Bangor, Wales,
- In November 2008, Tutu was awarded the J. William Fulbright Prize for International Understanding.
- In October 2008, Tutu received the Wallenberg Medal from the University of Michigan in recognition of his lifelong work in defence of human rights and dignity.
- In 2001 he was inducted into the Golden Key International Honour Society as an Honorary Member by the University of Stellenbosch.
- On 22 January 2000 he received an honorary doctorate from the Faculty of Theology at Uppsala University, Sweden.
- November 1999 he was awarded an honorary doctorate by the University of Fribourg.
- 1996 he was the first recipient of the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Award for Outstanding Service to the Anglican Communion
- 1992 he was awarded the Bishop John T. Walker Distinguished Humanitarian Service Award.
- 1987 he was awarded the Pacem in Terris Award.
- 16 October 1984 he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his role as a unifying leader figure in the campaign to resolve the problem of apartheid in South Africa.
- 1978 he was awarded a fellowship of King’s College London.
Desmond Tutu Membership
- 1995: Patron of Harmony Child Foundation.
- 1995: Patron of Hospice Association of southern Africa.
- 1994: Patron of World Campaign Against Military & Nuclear Collaboration with South Africa.
- 1994: Patron of Beacon Millennium.
- 1994: Patron of Action from Ireland.
- 1993: Patron of Cape Town Olympic Bid Committee
- Trustee and Chair of the Executive Committee of Educational Opportunities Council.
- Trustee of Desmond Tutu Education Trust.
- Trustee of Children’s Trust South Africa.
- Trustee of Africa Europe Institute.
- Trustee of Kagiso Trust
Desmond Tutu Family
On 2 July 1955, Tutu married Nomalizo Leah Shenxane. They had four children: Trevor Thamsanqa, Theresa Thandeka, Naomi Nontombi and Mpho Andrea.
Desmond Tutu Photo
Desmond Tutu Video
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