FORT WORTH, Texas (BP) – Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and the widow of Wade Morris are partnering to establish a scholarship in honor of the SWBTS alum and evangelist.
The $25,000 scholarship will serve as a reminder of how her husband was able to attend Southwestern, said Deborah Morris. As a student at Samford University, Wade Morris had displayed a passion for evangelism and preaching. Even with the discount afforded Southern Baptist students, though, the cost of seminary was a challenge. An anonymous donor at Morris’ home church, Shades Mountain Baptist in Birmingham, offered to pay his way.
As a result, two stipulations follow for recipients of the Timothy Wade Morris Endowed Scholarship Fund for Evangelism. One is to progress through the Roy J. Fish School of Evangelism and Missions at SWBTS. The other is to “have a demonstrated financial need.”
“Wade wasn’t much for taking out loans,” Deborah Morris said. “Someone like him wouldn’t have been able to go to seminary without someone helping.”
Wade Morris was already a fixture as an evangelist, preaching in churches and at youth camps, when he and Deborah married in 1993. He would go on to become a widely popular speaker, who became known for preaching in bare feet because he considered the area where he delivered the Gospel to be holy ground.
Morris died Aug. 31 at the age of 51 due to complications from COVID-19. His final post to Twitter, on July 10, celebrated 457 professions of faith after a week of preaching at Falls Creek Conference Center in Oklahoma.
Ed Upton, SWBTS vice president for institutional advancement, said the scholarship will serve to carry on Morris’ passion for the Gospel.
“We are delighted to honor the life and ministry of Wade Morris through this new scholarship,” he said. “Once fully funded, the scholarship will assist students committed to the advancement of the Gospel in keeping with the legacy of Wade, a Southwesterner who modeled the Great Commission devotion our Lord mandated. We are grateful to Deborah Morris and her family’s investment in Wade’s alma mater and our students.”
Donations for the scholarship as well as to Wade Morris Ministries can be made here. Deborah Morris sees it as a launching point for others who might not have the financial means to receive theological training for delivering the Gospel.
“I pray it sends others to go out and preach with the passion he had,” she said. “There was a huge loss in Wade’s passing, and our world needs that passion now more than ever. We need more people preaching the Gospel, and we’re praying that this scholarship is going to build up other evangelists to go out and do the same thing he did.”