Bangui Evangelical Graduate School of Theololgy
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ!
When Jesus wept over Jerusalem he said:
“If you, even you, had only known on this day what would bring you peace– but now it is hidden from your eyes … They will dash you to the ground, you and the children within your walls. They will not leave one stone on another, because you did not recognize the time of God’s coming to you.” Luke 19:42-44
In Greek, the word translated by “coming” means visitation for the purpose of bringing salvation. Through Christ the Lord visits his people. BEST is engaged to proclaim the visitation of the Lord in the world, beginning with our continent, Africa.
We thank the Lord for the first quarter of 2012. BEST has experienced a very busy quarter with visitors. Jack and Theo Robinson, Tom and Deb Berg, George Durance, and a team from Trinity Evangelical Presbyterian Church led by John and Marilyn Roughley. We mentioned these people because God has used each of them to bring insight about the future of BEST.
First doctoral student defended his thesis: Dieudonné Djoubairou is the first doctoral student who defended his thesis on January 4th. We thank the Lord for His faithfulness in leading this program.
Annual Colloquium: The annual colloquium of BEST was held at the beginning of January 2012. The theme this year was “Bible and Democracy”. The main conclusion was that the word “democracy” as political system is not found in ancient Israel or in the New Testament. However, the ideals of democracy such as justice, wellbeing, equity, peace, etc. are part of the biblical values for society.
Board meeting: the board of the school had its annual meeting in February. During this session, a new manual of procedure for the board was adopted. The seven year plan proposed by the president has been approved.
Future of BEST: After 35 years, BEST needs to expand while keeping its original mission. African society today is different from that of the creation of BEST in 1977. BEST is called to play a new role in the changing Africa. A seven year plan has been elaborated with the contribution of many people from inside and outside of Africa. The following paragraphs describe some of the four key elements of the seven year plan.
1. Expansion of the Women School: For the last 35 years, the women’s school was limited to the wives of students. There is a need to make this school a center to empower women and girls. The school will soon be opened to women and girls from the city. We will add new programs in professional computer skills, professional sewing skills, entrepreneurship and health promotion.
2. Training of teachers: At BEST, we identified the field of education as a critical tool for the transformation of the society. We are planning to launch a school of education to train teachers from a biblical, Christian perspective. Especially in Francophone Africa, there is a big need for such schools. Many churches have their own Christian schools, but their teachers are being trained in government schools.
3. Improvement of the kindergarten, primary school, high school and English Language School: for the next seven years, we are committed to improving the quality of our ministry and performance in these various schools. The goal is to make these schools models of good education in the city.
4. Construction of a Leadership Center: This center has been under consideration for several years, and now construction is ready to begin. It will contain 27 guest rooms, several meeting rooms for conferences and seminars as well as kitchen and dining areas.
Visiting professors: we received many visiting professors from America, DRCongo, Cameroon and Kenya. Dr Ian Shaw, from Langham Scholarship, founded by John Stott in England, also visited BEST.
Leadership positions of graduates: Jules Mboka and Jacques Vungbo, both graduates from BEST have been elected respectively as president and vice-president of CEUM (a denomination founded by the Evangelical Covenant Church of America) in the North-West part of DRCongo. The president of BEST and a team from BEST were present during the ceremony of installation in Gemena.
Health: the president of BEST had surgery in November. He had a gall bladder problem. Now he is doing well.
Thanks for being co-workers and partners in the Lord’s harvest.
- For the seven year plan
- Needs of financial support for students
- Financial support of the school (salaries, electricity, water, improved internet access)
- Permission from the government to begin building of the Leadership Center
May Lord bless you,
Nupanga Weanzana, Ph.D.
President of BEST