The Frank and Pauline Patterson Fall Colloquy Makes a Deep Impact on Ph.D. Students, Faculty and Guests
Dr. Christopher Wright, International Ministries Director of Langham Partnership International, was the featured speaker for Carroll Institute’s Frank and Pauline Patterson Fall Colloquy 2016, November 14-15, held at the Carroll Center. Dr. Wright spoke on the topic “God’s Mission and Ours” which was divided into three sessions: “Integral Mission and the Great Commission,” “The Missional Nature and Goals of Theological Education,” and “The Goodness, Glory and Goal of Creation.”
Several Carroll students and faculty shared how Dr. Wright’s sessions inspired them and that what they gleaned from his presentations would greatly influence their respective ministries. The following paragraphs are some of the comments and reflections on the Fall Colloquy by Carroll students and faculty.
Margie Clayton, Ph.D. student in the Ministry and Formation cluster and an educator, shared her thoughts:
Christopher Wright’s lecture on “The Missional Nature and Goals of Theological Education,” focusing on the ministry of teaching in the church, spoke directly to my heart and challenged me to become a better student and teacher to God’s people. Proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus through teaching is my Christian calling. Wright reminds us that the Holy Spirit is the one who is in charge of transforming the individual which takes place over time. The teacher’s job is to manage the student’s learning experiences which will hopefully lead to understanding and applying God’s Word. Following the mandate of the Great Commission, which is viewed in the call to teach and to equip the church for mission, I believe is one of upmost importance in the work of the ministry. “The ministry of teaching has to be included within our obedience to the Great Commission”, declares Wright.
“Attending Colloquy is always a highlight for me,” remarked Scott Whitson, Ph.D. student and Executive Director of Southwest Metroplex Baptist Association in Cleburne, TX. “This year was no different! Dr. Christopher Wright’s masterful presentation regarding the integral nature of mission helped me see both the justification and importance of creation care. For the first time I feel like I have a grasp on relating creation to mission.”
For two first-year Ph.D. students, Susan Banner and Justus Freeman, this was the first colloquy that they had attended. Susan shared, “My first Colloquy at Carroll was truly a blessing. The worship was Christ-honoring, the teaching sound, and the fellowship a great refreshment. Dr. Wright opened up new lines of thought for me that were firmly rooted in Scripture and relevant to my topic of research. His teaching on mission will affect my future approach to my studies. I am already looking forward to Spring Colloquy!” Justus commented, “Dr. Wright’s presentations on the ‘Mission of God’ at B.H. Carroll inspired me to reevaluate my personal ministry and direct my focus towards a holistic view of what it means to ‘make disciples.’ I am definitely thankful for the opportunity to attend a quality seminary like B.H. Carroll.”
Distinguished Fellow, Dr. Margaret Lawson, Doctoral Supervisor and Professor of Principles of Teaching at Carroll Institute, shared her impressions about the colloquy:
Two words come to my mind after a few days of reflection on Fall Colloquy. Those two words are “simple” and “profound.” In a world that rushes by in terror and turmoil, it was good to experience a time of peace and reflection. The worship experiences were uplifting through music, song, and meditation. One began to sense the spirit of community that is Carroll. The speaker, Dr. Wright, expressed profound truth from the word of God in simple terms. He led us back to the word of God to recognize the simplicity of God’s mission fleshed out through Jesus Christ. The application was evident for theological education, the local church and the individual believer. I came away refreshed, challenged and reminded again that from an educator’s perspective, often much more is caught than taught.
Colloquy is a highlight for doctoral students at Carroll Institute as they meet with supervisors, attend follow-up seminars, fellowship with their colleagues and participate in the colloquy sessions. They enjoy the personal contact with scholars such as Christopher Wright and ask stimulating questions during the Q&A sessions. This year, a Ph.D. student from Brazil, Elsen Portugal, attended the colloquy sessions via Zoom video conferencing. He participated in the Q&A period and led the group in prayer during one of the worship services.
Layne Wallace, Ph.D. student in the Faith and Heritage cluster and senior pastor of Rosemary Baptist Church in Roanoke Rapids, NC, summed up well the overall impression about this year’s Fall Colloquy and how the colloquy experience at Carroll has affected his ministry in meaningful ways throughout his doctoral studies:
During my study at B.H. Carroll, Colloquy has been a welcome part of the journey. Partially, Colloquy is great because I get to see those who have journeyed with me during the program. Colloquy is also great because of the excellent Colloquy speakers Carroll brings to lead our sessions. Our most recent Colloquy, led by Dr. Christopher Wright, did not disappoint. Dr. Wright is an excellent scholar, as we have come to expect in our colloquies, but was also an engaging presenter of his research. Dr. Wright’s engagement with the Old Testament’s great narratives is exceptional, and the way he connects them to the Gospel imperative to do the work of missions is inspiring. After his first session, I purchased one of his books, “The God I Don’t Understand.” Although the text was not the focus of his presentation at Colloquy, I found it engaging and insightful as well. Wright is an example of the many fine scholars that lead our sessions in Colloquy. They add to the educational experience at Carroll, and they demonstrate Carroll’s commitment: “We Train Missional Leaders.”
These kinds of responses affirm Carroll Institute’s mission of delivering accredited theological education and equipping Christian leaders in their contexts as they follow the call of Christ to minister and serve His church here and across the globe. To learn how you can support Carroll’s mission by providing scholarships for students, click here.
The videos of the colloquy sessions with Dr. Wright are being edited and will soon be available on the Carroll website. Be sure to check back on this page to find the links to the videos. Also, you may want to read President Gene Wilkes’ comments about the Colloquy.