An End of the Year Recap from Our President
Posted On December 29, 2016
As we look back on this past year, we give thanks to God for His faithfulness to Reformation Bible College. In August, Dr. Sproul, our founder and chancellor, joined us for our fifth anniversary. He spent a few moments expressing his vision for founding the college. As he ended his talk, he noted that the vision is now a reality. “We are here,” he said, “and we’re seeing the invisible hand of God’s providence at work right here, right now.” We indeed have seen God at work.
One of this year’s milestones was the addition of Dr. John Tweeddale as our academic dean. This year he successfully defended his dissertation, receiving his Ph.D. from the University of Edinburgh. We look forward to his fruitful labor for years to come as Dr. Tweeddale leads our faculty.
This year we also had new staff join the team. Kristen Kenney, formerly serving in the operations department at Ligonier, joined us as our business administrator. Megan Brandt came along as registrar and was promoted to director of student services. Eric Brandt joined our faculty as an instructor alongside his role as senior instructional designer for Ligonier. We sadly said goodbye to Emberlee van Eyk, who served as my executive assistant in addition to many other roles. Then we welcomed Megan Taylor, coming to us from Pennsylvania, as my new executive assistant.
In May, we graduated two students from the D.Min. program. Dr. Patrick James Abendroth serves as the senior pastor of Omaha Bible Church in Nebraska, and Dr. Joel Pressley Bradberry serves as the pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Mechanicsville, Virginia. Three graduated with an associate’s degree and thirteen walked across the platform to receive their bachelor’s degree. We also graduated our first students in our new Foundation Year program. Some of our graduates went to Westminster Seminary in California, Mid-America Reformed Seminary, and Reformed Theological Seminary. How encouraging it is to send articulate and educated students into the world.
In the fall, we welcomed the incoming class and our returning students. Dr. R. Albert Mohler, Jr. spoke at our convocation and our bagpiper, Reginald Lyle, was on hand to help us celebrate the auspicious occasion. The faculty almost bested the students in the annual soccer game. Tied at 1-1, the students scored with only 13 seconds to go in regulation time.
It has also been a year of transition. Dr. Aaron Denlinger concluded his time with us at RBC in May. Prof. Ryan Fraser and our first registrar, Heidi Fraser, said goodbye to us and are now taking steps to serve with Wycliffe Bible Translators, developing their partnership team. Dr. Ben Dunson stepped away from the lectern to pursue ordination and a pastoral internship at Grace Presbyterian Church in Stuart, Florida. We received the resignation of Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr. We are grateful for the contribution of these faculty and staff and pray for God’s blessings on their next endeavors.
As we close out 2016, we look forward to next year. The 500th anniversary of the Protestant Reformation will play a prominent role at a college named Reformation Bible College. Our name gives us our identity. The original vision and mission staked out by Dr. Sproul continues to govern and direct us. We remain committed to the proposition that the study of the good, the true, and the beautiful is the best way to prepare for whatever lies ahead. We also continue with a laser focus on the one thing that is our calling, to teach theology. Above all, know God.
Please continue to pray for us at Reformation Bible College, for our students, for our graduates, and for the new students coming in 2017. We are not only looking back at the power of the Word of God so clearly demonstrated in 1517, we are looking ahead for the next Reformation.
Have a blessed New Year,
Stephen J. Nichols