By brother Bruce

I had the great joy of witnessing trained and equipped young people being sent out to reach their Southeast Asian country in great need of the Gospel of Jesus Christ! In January I attended the 2020 Judson Bible School graduation ceremonies for 28 students -- 18 men and 10 women.

Held in a hotel near the college, the momentous event drew parents and friends, many dressed in clothing befitting their region. Some of the 330 attendees had never been out of their village regions or even seen a fancy hotel.

Included among the guests were the son and daughter of the country's vice-president, special singer Zam, a delegation from a regional denominational convention, and the president of a smaller school.

The welcome by Daisy, wife of the college founder, was followed by more welcomes, Scripture, singing and the valedictorian speech. The graduation address challenged the students to be ready to follow God wherever he calls in whatever situation, being faithful to spread the Good News across their land.

I was honored to present the graduates with their certificates and shake their hands. President Lian blessed each graduate and Daisy gave them a graduation gift. The students then sang "Hallelujah to the Lamb." When all was done, the audience sang "Great Is Thy Faithfulness." A celebratory meal included nut and fruit ice cream.

Praise be to God for the provisions for these students to study for three years, and now to graduate and move on to further study or ministry!

Bawi Tha, 2019 Graduate

Bawi came to JBC at a grade 7 level and could hardly write and read his own language. However, his interest was great but had the expected difficulties. His first two years he did not do well. But in his third year there was a big change and he ended up finishing well. After graduation last year, he became a missionary with a church. But it could only offer a small salary, which was not enough for his family which includes a wife and young son. So he prayed and offered to teach English to the grade 9 and 10 students in his village who needed a certain English proficiency level to graduate with grade 10. His English is enough to carry on a rough conversation with me -- but in that village he is the top speaker! And so the Lord has provided extra income to help with all the expenses of a new missionary and family.

This ability to teach English is something JBC works to build into its students. As English teachers they can use Bible stories and songs to tell the Gospel story as they teach English. Their students gain language skills for jobs and further education while hearing the Good News of Jesus.

posted February 24, 2020
Advancing Indigenous Missions 2020