November has been filled with many reasons that I am thankful to be partnering with you in the ministry of FTC.
First of all, I am grateful once again for our accreditation with the ACTEA Council. I was able to participate in the Council meeting October 25-27 in Nigeria. FTC and Kima International School of Theology (KIST), another seminary in Western Kenya, were formally recognized and welcomed as members. We are looking for a new director since Dr. Emanuel Chemengich has been elected bishop of Kitale Diocese of the Anglican Church of Kenya. His tenure of service ends on December 31, 2018.
But for me, attending ACTEA at Nigeria Baptist Theological Seminary (NBTS) was a benchmarking experience. It is professionally inspiring to visit a 120 year old (established in 1898) seminary with 800 residential and 400 day students and to hear their reasons for staying focused as a seminary instead of converting to a university. They have a private high school with over 500 students as an income generating project and they have gained credibility and respect throughout the country. We also got to visit LIFE, another seminary in Lagos that was just accredited last year and is more similar to FTC. They are working toward offering master of theology degrees. I am thankful for professional growth opportunities!
Our new Academic Dean, Rodgers Wekesi started on November 1 and took off flying. He has unveiled a new strategic plan and the Academic Committee will be taking this next year to review and update the curriculum. We are thankful for Rodgers.
Nancy Wafula has joined our faculty! Due to a high demand from both students and faculty, Nancy has designed and is teaching a very intensive course in Health and Fitness. She is teaching it right now with the modular students and will teach it again in January semester 2019 to the residential students. Basic first aid and emergency CPR (Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation) courses are not readily available to people here and are very valuable. She is also taking a very holistic approach and helping students to assess and understand their own physical fitness and all the ways that our bodies interact and are a part of our mental, emotional and spiritual health as well. Nancy trained as a nurse when we lived in the United States and we are thankful she gets to use her skills to fill a very important need.
The campus is a busy place these days! The residential students are now out for their Christmas break until January 7, 2019. The modular students are also here and will finish their courses on December 15. We were happy to have visiting lecturer David Wolfe here to teach a modular class on Pastoral Care and Counseling to our bachelor of theology students. We are thankful for his contribution to the preparation of our students.
Blessings on your holidays and I hope you will join me in gratitude for all the ways God is blessing us at Friends Theological College.