Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Reforms & Retreat

We have had a working retreat in Institut Perhutanan Sabah, Telupid, 97 kms from Ranau towards the East Coast of Sabah. Altogether, 27 came, lecturers with our spouses and children gathered for a couple of days of retreat, though for the Faculty we had 9 discussion sessions in all. At the last session, one colleague whispered to me that we had accomplished a reformation. Indeed there were several notable reforms. First, we tackled the curriculum in 3 sessions. At the end we created  a curriculum for the 4-year Bachelor of Theology that has 40 percent biblical study content, 10% biblical languages, 10% Church History, 20% systematic theology and 20% practical theology. Those who lack practical theology or ministerial skills will go for a Master of Ministry after 2 years in the field. The faculty is in agreement that as a Bible School, the Bible must have its precedence and preeminence in the construction of the curriculum.
Before we have less than 15% biblical study content and almost 50% practical theology subjects. We also tackled the community worship and spirituality and made several changes. We reduced the dawn prayers to thrice a week instead of everyday from Monday to Friday. Student who get up at 4.30am cannot be expected to stay focused on their study by 11am. Further we will emphasise personal devotions over group devotions,  a discipline that is wanting from many SIB pastors as they have been trained at College to meet together every morning but to the neglect of private devotions and prayer time with the Lord. I thank the Lord because I expected greater resistance to my proposals but my colleagues proved me wrong as time and time again they affirmed and supported what I believed the Lord put in my heart for the good of College and the College community.

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