FORT WORTH, Texas (SWBTS) – Southwestern had the chance to thank many of its supporters, April 2, during a luncheon honoring those who give toward student scholarships and connecting them with the students whom they have helped. President Paige Patterson explained the critical importance of the support of Southwestern’s friends.
“Some things get less important as time goes along,” Patterson said, “but some things get more important. The scholarship fund is more important now than it ever was.”
With increasing costs in tuition, education in general and life expenses in an economy that seems to be barely treading water, the gifts of Southwestern ministry partners make the difference between equipping the next generation for ministry and leaving the next generation on a collision course with continued depravity and spiritual bankruptcy with no one equipped to redirect them.
The group of ministry partners and students heard from newly appointed director of financial aid, Adam Mallette, also a Master of Divinity student. Mallette, a husband and father of four, serves as an active duty marine—a journey he began in the wake of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.
“I hear a lot about spiritual warfare,” Mallette said. “That term gets thrown around a lot. Sometimes I think it’s a little more haphazard than genuine. What folks know of warfare is what they’ve seen on TV when things blow up, [and on] the video games that they play, and what I want to convey to you is that warfare is none of that. It’s not something that can be done with Dorito residue on your fingers. It’s dirty, and there's blood, and death is all around you, and so you don’t just walk out and start to shoot things in warfare.
“I say all of that because I want you to know that we’re in spiritual warfare, and I look at this institution as the boot camp that’s going to prepare the future spiritual leaders to engage in spiritual warfare, and I view that as our mission. That preparation starts right here and right now. We need to be about that business of investing in the lives of students and consequently holding them up to a high standard and expecting things of them.”
Mallette said his mission at Southwestern is to prepare himself and his fellow students for the work of ministering the Gospel throughout the world so that the world may know the hope that is found solely in Jesus Christ. That vital preparation, he explained, is largely sustained by those who give to support the seminary.
“I thank you so much for everything you are doing to make a difference here in the lives of the students at Southwestern,” Mallette said.
Dean and Barbara Hancock, representing In Touch Ministries, spoke from the ministry partner perspective and expressed their joy at being a part of perpetuating the ministry of In Touch founder Charles Stanley through endowing scholarship funds at Southwestern.
“It is Dr. Stanley’s opinion, it’s the opinion of the board of In Touch, that there’s no better place for that to happen than right here [at Southwestern],” Dean Hancock said.
Before the luncheon ended, Vice President for Institutional Advancement Mike Hughes recognized those throughout the room who had given funds for scholarships at the seminary and thanked them for their eternally significant contributions.