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FROM THE SEMINARIES: Jonathan Six named SEBTS VP; Tawa Anderson joins NOBTS faculty; Spurgeon College commissions nine mission teams

Jonathan Six promoted to SEBTS VP of advancement

By Chad Burchett/SEBTS

WAKE FOREST, N.C. (BP) – On Wednesday (April 27) Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary (SEBTS) named Jonathan Six, former director of financial and alumni development, as the new acting vice president of institutional advancement, effective June 1. He will replace Art Rainer, who has held the position for eight years. Rainer will leave the role May 31 to launch a new financial training ministry.

A two-time graduate from SEBTS with Master of Divinity and Doctor of Philosophy degrees, Six has served the Institutional Advancement division in a variety of roles. In 2007, he joined the Student Development Office (now the Admissions Office), helping to recruit students to SEBTS. He was promoted to a leadership role in 2013 as the director of the Alumni Development Office, and since 2015, he has served as director of the Financial and Alumni Development Office.

“Dr. Six loves our mission and has shown competence in the different roles he has served in over his tenure at SEBTS since 2007,” said SEBTS President Danny Akin. “I, along with the rest of my executive leadership team, am excited to work with Dr. Six in this new role.”

The Institutional Advancement Office oversees three major efforts at SEBTS: fundraising, recruiting and admitting students, and maintaining brand awareness and public relations. Six will direct these efforts by overseeing the Financial and Alumni Development Office, the Admissions Office, and the Office of Marketing and Communications.

“I am humbled and honored to serve SEBTS as the acting vice president of iznstitutional advancement,” Six said. “I love this school, our faculty and its mission. I count it a great joy to urge students to study under this Great Commission faculty and encourage donors and alumni to support the Lord’s work through SEBTS. I am thankful for Dr. Akin’s confidence and believe our brightest days are ahead.”

In accordance with SEBTS bylaws, Six will officially take the position in October, when the school’s trustees have an opportunity to vote on it.

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Tawa Anderson to join NOBTS, Leavell College faculty

By Gary D. Myers/NOBTS

NEW ORLEANS (BP) – New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary and Leavell College announced the appointment of Tawa Anderson to the seminary faculty. Anderson will begin his new role in January 2023.

Anderson, associate professor of philosophy at Oklahoma Baptist University (OBU), will join the NOBTS faculty as associate professor of philosophy and apologetics.

“Tawa Anderson is an excellent addition to our faculty,” said Jamie Dew, president of NOBTS and Leavell College. “In his time at OBU, he had a proven record for teaching excellence, student mentorship, and growing programs in both philosophy and apologetics.”

Dew said he is especially excited about Anderson’s work in apologetics and worldview studies, adding that he believes Anderson’s knowledge and skillset will benefit all levels of study at the seminary – undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral programs.

“He has become a widely respected name in Christian Apologetics and Worldview Studies, two highly important parts of our curriculum here at NOBTS and Leavell College,” Dew said. “With the addition of Anderson to our faculty, we will be well-positioned to offer M.A.s and Ph.D.s in Apologetics and Philosophy of Religion. We are thankful that God has given us the opportunity to bring Dr. Anderson and his family to our campus and join the work of training the next generation of God’s servants.”

A Canadian by birth, Anderson earned a bachelor of arts degree from the University of Alberta and a master of divinity at Edmonton Baptist Seminary (now known as Taylor Seminary) in Edmonton, Alberta. Anderson completed a doctor of philosophy degree at a Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, focusing on worldview and apologetics.

He joined the OBU faculty in 2011, shortly after completing his Ph.D. In addition to his teaching role at OBU, Anderson directed the school’s honors program from 2014 until 2019 and served as the philosophy department chair since 2013.

Anderson is the author of Why Believe? Christian Apologetics for a Skeptical Age published in 2021 and co-author of An Introduction to Christian Worldview: Pursuing God’s Perspective in a Pluralistic World (with W. Michael Clark and David K. Naugle). An Introduction to Worldview was nominated for InterVarsity Press’s annual reader’s choice award in 2017.

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Spurgeon College Fusion Program commissions nine missionary teams

By Brett Fredenberg/MBTS

KANSAS CITY (BP) – Spurgeon College hosted the Fusion Commissioning Ceremony in Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary’s chapel on April 26, commissioning nine missionary teams to Africa and high security locations throughout the Middle East and South Asia.

Since 2005, Fusion has existed to equip believers for a lifetime of Kingdom service by training students to make disciples of all nations through a one-year immersive program. Each year, Midwestern Seminary and Spurgeon College sends several Fusion teams overseas and signifies their service through a commissioning ceremony.

MBTS President Jason Allen opened this year’s ceremony by addressing Fusion students on the task before them.

After reading Romans 1:13-17, a foundational passage for Fusion students, Allen said, “This commissioning service is a representation of God’s grace in the lives of these students for this summer and the rest of their lives.”

“The choice to study at Spurgeon College and partake in the Fusion Program is a Gospel choice,” he said. “The work before them is a Gospel work, and we could not be prouder of their faithfulness to follow the call.”

Fusion staff then presented the Fusion students to family, friends and the Midwestern Seminary and Spurgeon College community as having successfully completed phase one of their training.

Director of Fusion Erik Odegard said, “We are here today to commission these young men and women to the nations, but we are also here to celebrate a rite of passage for these students.”

The Fusion program consists of three rites of passage, each signifying major achievements and further commitments in the future.

Students completed their first rite of passage after ground-school, an intense two-week training at the beginning of the Fusion program. The Commissioning Service represented the second rite of passage, signifying their successful completion of several months of physical, emotional, and spiritual training. The third rite of passage will be celebrated upon their return to the States, as the students will then be commissioned to a lifetime of service of making disciples of all nations.

“Fusion has always been more than a one-year missions program,” Odegard said. “We want to train young men and women for a lifetime of making disciples. We want to instill this transcendent cause for the glory of Christ among all nations in each student.”

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