Darren Duncan announced his resignation as pastor of Living Word UB in Columbus, Ohio. The effective date is yet to be determined. Darren will be going active duty in the Air Force as a military chaplain. He has been a chaplain in the reserves.

Here are various significant items of news from the HC Graduate School of Christian Ministries. Bishop Emeritus Ray Seilhamer heads up the Graduate School, with the title of Associate Dean.

  • In the fall of 2003, the Graduate School will launch a Master of Arts in Counseling Ministries. President G. Blair Dowden approved the idea on January 7. The program won’t need a fulltime faculty member, since it will use current HC faculty and adjunct professors. The Master of Arts in Counseling Ministries is designed to prepare Christian counselors for the local church and parachurch organizations. The 42-hour program will demand the same ministry and biblical core classes required in the other three master’s programs. For state licensing, students will need to take classes at another accredited institution.
  • The Graduate School’s winter enrollment is up 16 percent over the fall semester. Four of the five winter-semester classes must be held outside of the Graduate School suite (located in the UB Headquarters Building) because of the large enrollments.
  • Dr. Ray Seilhamer will travel to Mandeville, Jamaica March 3-7. He will teach “Principles of Leadership” to all seniors at Jamaica Bible College. In April, Dr. Steve and Twyla Lee will teach “Marriage and Family” at Jamaica Bible College. Steve is a Psychology professor at HC, and Twyla is a Social Work professor at Taylor University.
  • Dr. Seilhamer wants to take 100 books on leadership for the library at Jamaica bible College. If you have books you are willing to donate which are in good shape, and have been published since 1990, you can drop them off at the Graduate School office. Or, contact Dr. Seilhamer at rseilhamer@ub.org.
  • Thirty-two students are enrolled in “Perspectives,” a course on world missions which the US Center for World Mission sponsors at various locations throughout the country. The class at Huntington College started January 7, and will meet for 15 weeks on Tuesday nights from 6:30-9:30.
  • The Graduate School finished its first year of offering a Certificate in Christian Ministry. Enrollment passed their expectation, with 111 students enrolled in 2-3 non-credit condensed education classes during 2002. Twenty-five students attended classes in El Paso, Texas; 55 students enrolled in Mexico; and 31 students enrolled in two classes in Boston. Three more classes will be held in El Paso in May 2003.
  • In the fall, the Graduate School held two classes in Indianapolis. Two more classes are planned for the spring semester: “The Sociology of Adolescence” and “Counseling Families in Trouble.”

Dave and Becky Spencer had planned to be back in Brazil in January, returning to field service after many years of stateside administrative roles with Wycliffe Bible Translators. However, they felt God clearly telling them to remain in Orlando a while longer–maybe a year, maybe longer. Fortunately, they hadn’t yet sold their house in Orlando or bought plane tickets. And there are vital roles for them to fill at the Wycliffe USA headquarters.

From Arek and Donna Delik, endorsed missionaries serving in Poland with Operation Mobilization, report, “This year we had more new faces in our English school, especially a lot of young ones. Donna started an English club for children the year before, and expanded it in 2002 for 20 more children. We are praying earnestly for workers to join us, for there is so much we would like to do through this unique ministry.

“Our Shoe Box Present Distribution went very well this Christmas. Around 200 children and parents turned up for the event. Arek shared shortly about the greatest present God had given to us, while Bible school students helped us run a program. It is our third year doing this distribution, and it’s the first time we organized it in our church meeting place. We are praying fore more opportunities to share with the children and their families in the future. Also, this year our tiny fellowship prepared some shoebox presents for Ukrainian children.”

Ruth Ann Price is the first Missionary in Residence at Huntington College, her alma mater. This is a two-year assignment. She writes:

“A major goal is to raise the profile of interest and response in the student body toward work overseas, particularly in cross-cultural ministry. I’m excited to think it might be possible to interest and even place some students in cross-cultural ministry particularly in Bible translation somewhere in the world. I will teach some courses, which will be a new experience for me in the college environment.”

Ruth Ann will also continue working with Wycliffe, assigned to the Asia Area as a management consultant and trainer.

“I’m to be at Huntington College for the January through May semester, and in Asia from June through December. I will spend my time in Asia traveling, probably not located in one country for very long, providing as much on-site assistance as I can. The Asia Area office is located in Manila, the Philippines. The assignment and my work performance will be reviewed at the end of each six-month period by both HC and Wycliffe. If all are still happy with the arrangement, renewal will be automatic.”

Ruth Ann will not receive a salary from HC, but will continue as a Wycliffe missionary and will rely on the contributions of her supporters. However, HC will provide free housing.

“This will be a place for me to call ‘home,’ which will be especial crucial since the other six months of the year I will be without such.”

Alan and Doris MacDonald are endorsed missionaries serving with Wycliffe Bible Translators. Doris writes, “Alan continues to be the visionary and international relations man. In the past five years, he has enjoyed seeing much of his ‘vision’ come true–having a hand in training new project leaders and government relations personnel, increasing Wycliffe’s visibility and standing in the global community, networking to increase the effectiveness of like-minded organizations.

“His work often takes him to faraway places. This past year, it was France, Spain, and Scotland. In January, it will be Brazil. We enjoy the stories he comes home with, and most of all, enjoy the time he is at home. As usual, there is more work to be done and more places to be than is possible for one person–and I am proud of the many times when I see Alan not trying to do it all, but depending on God.”

During December, Anchor UB (Fort Wayne, Ind.) encourages its people to buy something for the church. A small Christmas tree in the foyer is adorned with tiny ornaments, each bearing the name of inexpensive, everyday items the church needs–cleaning supplies, lightbulbs, paper plates, colored paper, stapler, etc.–over 100 items in all.

People remove an ornament from the tree, buy the gift, wrap it up, and bring it back to the church. The gifts are then opened the Sunday before Christmas. This year–the third√ëchildren passed out the gifts to adults, who unwrapped the presents. The children then brought them back to the platform.

Rev. C. C. Au Yeung, a former UB minister in Hong Kong, passed away on December 24. He was founding pastor of the UB church in Chinatown, New York, not far from the World Trade Center site. Mrs. Au Yeung lives in New York City at: Apt. 6 N, Saint Margaret House, 49 Fulton Street, New York, NY 10038.

The LIFE Sunday school class of Prince Street UB (Shippensburg, Pa.) entered a 40-foot float in the city’s Dickens’ Day parade. They won first prize. The same class hosted a Christmas dinner to help a local pregnancy ministry. Several young women and families attended as guests. Persons attending from the church were asked to bring an unwrapped baby gift. The gifts were given to the ministry, to be distributed to mothers.

For Thanksgiving, Tana Hey asked children and adults from Prince Street UB’s Sunday school classes to write down things they were thankful for. She then wove the responses into a hymn using the tune “For the Beauty of the Earth.” This new hymn was included in the morning worship services the Sunday before Thanksgiving.

Mt. Hope UB (Carson City, Mich.) just finished studying “Walk as Jesus Walked,” published by Sonlife. Associate Pastor Valerie Reynolds writes:

“This study has changed the way Mt. Hope does its ministry. Instead of being focused on the inside, we are now looking for ways to intentionally make friends and lead them into a relationship with Jesus Christ.

“One woman suggested that we make Christmas cookies, put them in a tin, and give them to unchurched people around us. Fifteen women packed the tins, and we delivered 25 tins to homes and 7 tins to area schools and public service agencies. The tins also included a small card in the tin saying, ‘From your friends at Mt. Hope.’

“We also have changed our mission statement to ‘Our mission at Mt. Hope church is to be a Lighthouse community, living a praying, caring, and sharing lifestyle.'”