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Posts from the President - Vol 1

This is the first installation of the Posts from the President series on the Providence website. Every second week, President Dr. David Johnson will write about the Providence community from his perspective, and the stories of encouragement, blessings, and life-lessons that come along with his first school year as President.

I just read the list of Providence faculty accomplishments for the past year. These folks have not only prepared for and taught classes, served on committees, and attended meetings at Providence, they have also been productive outside the classroom and off campus too. In the past year our faculty members have published books, articles, and book reviews. They have led workshops, delivered addresses to scholarly societies, and given papers to various service groups. They have preached, taught, and facilitated discussions in local churches. Our faculty make a contribution to the church and the world.

As President, a large part of my work is to serve the faculty. The group of faculty that we have makes it easy to perform this service. I believe in what they are doing and what the University College and the Seminary stand for. What is it that they do and what do they stand for? We use the term “Christ-Centred Education” to describe in general terms what we do here.

Christ Centred Education means a Christ-Centered Faculty facilitating a Christ-Centred Curriculum in a Christ-Centred Community. The curriculum and the community are relatively easy to define using the term integration. But our teachers are Christ-Centred as well. This is a bit more difficult. What is a Christ-Centred teacher?

Of course it means that we have a relationship with the living Jesus. Beyond that, I imagine there are as many ways of having this relationship as there are ways of negotiating a marriage. Every marriage I know is different. Some are calm, some are tempestuous. Some marriages are easy and some are a lot of hard work. Marriages change over time, too. The same can be said of each member of the Providence faculty in their relationship with Jesus.

So a Christ-Centred faculty is made up of individuals who are somehow and at some level engaged with the living Jesus. They attempt to follow him, walk with him, and serve him above all others. No two of our faculty members is alike in this relationship. But we all buy into the mission of Providence to be Christ-Centred teachers.

You should know that the Providence Faculty will deliver what has come to be called the Faculty Forum on October 29. The theme of the day of papers and discussion is “Experiencing the Sacred: Scripture, Society, and Culture.” Come to one or all of the discussions. I am looking forward to hearing our Christ-Centred teachers.

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