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2003-07 Moscow partnership approved by NOBTS trustees

NEW ORLEANS (BP)–New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary trustees approved a five-year New Millennium Partnership between the seminary and the church planting team of the International Mission Board in Moscow, Russia, during their Oct. 8-9 meeting.

The primary focus of the partnership, from spring 2003 to fall 2007, will be theological education and church planting activities in the greater Moscow area, but it also will provide some opportunities to work with Southern Baptist missionaries in other areas of Russia.

The partnership will be coordinated by Troy Bush, IMB strategy coordinator for Moscow. NOBTS will assist the IMB church planting team in Moscow and the Moscow Baptist Association in four areas: a prayer emphasis that includes “Reach Moscow with Prayer,” a weeklong initiative on campus in September each year, and other global missions focused events; Russian Baptist theological education, through the provision of at least one faculty member annually to Moscow Theological Seminary to fill short-term faculty needs; Southern Baptist missionary leadership and skills development; and evangelism and church planting efforts through missions trips and research.

“This global perspective is another indication of a 21st century seminary,” NOBTS President Chuck Kelley said. “Our students need more of an opportunity to get involved on the mission field than just giving money to the Lottie Moon offering [for international missions]. We want Moscow to be on the hearts of our seminary family.”

In action Kelley called the continuation of the reinvention of the seminary, trustees also approved two new elected faculty positions to assist in instruction for focused disciplines or delivery systems for which regular fulltime trustee-elected tenure track faculty are not available.

A ministry-based faculty status position is a non-tenure track renewable appointment based on the needs of the institution. In some cases, this might be for a faculty member in a very focused discipline for which there is an ongoing need for faculty, but not yet enough curriculum to require a fulltime faculty member.

“This ministry-based faculty model will allow us to have adequate staffing for our nontraditional delivery systems, including extension center, Internet and Saturday classes,” Kelley explained. “What I am really excited about is the stream of influence of the local church that it will allow the seminary to have.”

He also explained what the position is not. “This is not a replacement for fulltime faculty positions,” Kelley clarified. “It is a supplement to enhance our current program.”

Trustees also approved a senior professor rank which purposes to honor the academic excellence of senior faculty members who have officially retired, but can continue making a contribution to the seminary for a longer period of time with reduced responsibilities. Like the ministry-based faculty, the senior professor status is a renewable appointment based on the needs of the institution.

“This will allow our experienced faculty members to continue doing what they do best … teach,” Kelley said.

In addition to approving the new faculty tracks, trustees elected Donna Bowman Peavey as instructor in Christian education for NOBTS’ Leavell College for the 2003-2003 academic year.

“Donna Peavey has already made a significant contribution to Leavell College by bringing her expertise and ministry experience in the area of Christian education to our faculty,” said Thomas Strong, dean of Leavell College.

“In particular, her love for preschoolers and children has helped to broaden the ministry perspective of all our Leavell College students. Her zeal for life and commitment to Christ serve as good models for all. I rejoice in her addition to the Leavell College and our ministry.”

Peavey has served on the adjunct faculty of NOBTS for the past year, where she has been instrumental in coordinating the preschool/children’s ministry certificate program. She previously served for 11 years as a childhood education consultant, serving churches, local and state associations and childcare centers while serving as the director of the childhood education center at Briarlake Baptist Church in Decatur, Ga., from 1989-96, and at Buckhead Baptist Church in Atlanta from 1986-89. She is an approved trainer for childcare licensing in the state of Louisiana.

Peavey completed the bachelor of science degree at the University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg in 1983 and the master of religious education degree from NOBTS in 1986. She anticipates completing the doctor of philosophy degree in Christian education from NOBTS this year. She and her husband, Philip E. Peavey, director and chaplain of New Hope Ministries of Greater New Orleans, have one daughter, Olivia.

Trustees also received the presidential appointment of Charles Quarles as associate professor of New Testament and Greek.

Quarles has served for the past three years as a career missionary and theological education team leader for the International Mission Board in Bucharest, Romania, where he was associate professor of New Testament and Greek at the Bucharest Baptist Theological Seminary and University of Bucharest. He has also participated in short-term missions trips to Zimbabwe and Kenya, Africa; Kazakstan; and Moscow and Novgorod, Russia.

Quarles previously served as the chairman of the Bible/theology division and as associate professor of New Testament and Greek at Clear Creek Baptist Bible College in Pineville, Ky., where he has served since 1996. Before that, he served as adjunct professor of New Testament and Greek at Mid-America Baptist Theological Seminary in Germantown, Tenn.

For more than 10 years, Quarles served as pastor in churches in Tennessee and Mississippi, most recently as senior pastor of Hickory Ridge Baptist Church in Memphis. Previously he served as pastor at Rossville (Tenn.) Baptist Church and Concord Baptist Church in Bruce, Miss., after serving as minister of youth at First Baptist Church in Bruce.

Quarles completed the bachelor of arts degree in sociology and classics (Greek) from the University of Mississippi in 1986. He then completed both the master of divinity degree and the doctor of philosophy degree in New Testament with minors in theology and Old Testament from Mid-America Baptist Theological Seminary in 1989 and 1995. He and his wife, Julie, have three children, Rachael, Hannah and Joshua.

“Chuck Quarles brings not only excellent academic credentials and publications to our faculty, but also significant ministerial experience in the pastorate and in global missions,” NOBTS provost Steve Lemke said. “He has a mind of a scholar, the heart of a pastor and the passion of an evangelist.”

In other action, trustees also approved the fee of $100 for doctor of theology and doctor of education degree holders to convert their degrees to the more widely regarded doctor of philosophy degree. Interested degree holders should contact the research doctoral program office at 1-800-662-8702, ext. 8010 or (504) 816-8010 for more information.

    About the Author

  • Shannon Baker

    Shannon Baker is director of communications for the Baptist Resource Network of Pennsylvania/South Jersey and editor of the Network’s weekly newsletter, BRN United.

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