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WMU boosts church’s effort to rebuild Liberian seminary

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (BP)–Soap, cake pans, U.S. postage stamps, paper clips, work gloves, sheets, pot holders, tape and T-shirts are just a few of the items Woman’s Missionary Union leaders from across the nation collected in January to send to the Liberian Baptist Theological Seminary in Paynesville, Liberia.

The collection of items was in partnership with Christian Fellowship Baptist Church in Atlanta, which is coordinating a project with the seminary. The items will benefit students and be used to help refurbish the seminary, which was closed and badly damaged during the civil war that erupted in the country in 1990.

In addition to 18 boxes of items, the WMU executive board awarded the seminary a $2,000 Second Century Fund grant Jan. 14 during its January meeting. The grant will be used to fund scholarships for female students. WMU also gave the seminary a similar grant last year.

Emmanuel McCall, pastor of Christian Fellowship Baptist Church, and Lincoln Brownell, president of the Liberian seminary, received the donations from WMU Jan. 29 during a visit to the national WMU offices in Birmingham, Ala.

In accepting the donations, Brownell said it was appropriate for him to accept the donations because of the role WMU and missions education had played in his life. Through Sunbeams, Royal Ambassadors and personal relationships with women who worked with WMU in his native country, he grew in his faith and commitment to serving God in Liberia.

The seminary will honor one of the WMU leaders who influenced him and others in the country later this year when a renovated building on the campus will be named for her. The leader is Dorothy Pryor, retired WMU executive director in Georgia.

Brownell also noted that a Women on Mission group is active on the seminary campus today. Women on Mission is the adult organization sponsored by WMU.

Brownell recounted the atrocities committed against him and other Christians in his country during the civil war. He told about several close brushes with death but testified that God had spared his life to carry on Christian work in Liberia today.

Elected in August 1998, Brownell is the fourth president of the seminary and the first Liberian to hold the office. Southern Baptist personnel opened the seminary in 1976. Today, the seminary is the only accredited school in Liberia that offers theological education. Students from several denominations study there.

For more information on the seminary, write Christian Fellowship Baptist Church, 1500 Norman Dr., College Park, GA 30349 or call (770) 997-4087.
(BP) photo posted in the BP Photo Library at http://www.bpnews.net. Photo title: HELPING HAND.
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