Monday, August 8, 2016

Interpreter's House: Ministering to the World

By Kathleen Curto

I would imagine that most of you are familiar with the timeless Christian classic, Pilgrim’s Progress.  It is an allegory written by John Bunyan, which pictures for us a pilgrim’s journey from the City of Destruction to the Celestial City. In the story, shortly after Christian passes through the wicket gate on his travels, he visits Interpreter’s House. In the first room that he visits within the house, Christian sees a picture of “a very grave person hanging up against the wall…he had eyes lifted up to heaven, the best of books in his hand, the law of truth was written on his lips, the world was behind its back; he stood as if he pleaded with men and a crown of gold did hang over his head.” When asked by Christian what this picture means, Interpreter tells him, “this is the only man whom the Lord of the place you are going hath authorized to be your guide…lest in thy journey thou meet with some who pretend to lead thee right, but their way goes down to death.”  This, Christian discovers, is a picture of a minister of the word.

At Greenville Seminary our mission is to train passionate preachers of God’s word. We have been doing this for 30 years and in that time have had the opportunity to train many men, some of whom are from other countries. Many of these countries do not have the facilities or personnel needed to train young men in the historic reformed faith. We have partnered with you in the past to give men, from backgrounds such as these, a solid reformed Presbyterian education. 

We have, by God’s grace, attempted to make them men with their eyes lifted to heaven, the Bible in their hands, the law of truth on their lips, the world behind their backs pleading with men to repent and believe on the Lord Jesus Christ. 

What a joy it has been to watch so many of our graduates serve faithfully in churches around the world.  Of those whom we have supported over the years, we have had several return to Brazil — Rodrigo, Emilio, and Breno — to work in vibrant ministries in the church and in their denominational seminaries. Octavius del Fils has been serving in his home country of Haiti, after he completed his studies at Greenville in 2007, and he has faithfully served the church in Haiti for nearly 10 years. Edward Liu, who studied at GPTS for five years, has just returned to Minnesota to work in a Chinese church in the Minneapolis area. We are also thrilled that Isaac Koko, a student from Nigeria, has finally been granted a visa to attend GPTS on site. He has been on the list before but has only been able to take courses by distance; now he will be on campus beginning in January, 2017. These are just a few of the men whose education at GPTS was made possible by your generous giving to our Foreign Student appeal each year.  And, again, we want to remind you that the cost of putting a missionary on the field for one year is equivalent to what it costs us to educate a foreign student for four years at GPTS. 

Listed below are several students, some of whom you have supported in the past, and one new one, from Brazil!!  Please prayerfully consider if you are able to assist with tuition support or living expenses. The amounts given are based on full time student costs per year.

Steve Cliff
New Zealand
Bachelor of Divinity
Tuition, Fees and Work Study
Filipe Cortial
Master of Divinity
Tuition, Fees and Living Expenses
Melwin Isaac
Master of Divinity
Tuition, Fees and Living Expenses
Miguel Flower
Puerto Rico
Master of Divinity
Bradney Lopez
Puerto Rico
Master of Divinity
Tuition and Fees
Isaac Koko
Master of Arts
Tuition, Fees and Living Expenses
Faculty Int’l Travel Fund


What a kind and gracious gift God has given to Christ’s bride as he has set apart an ordained ministry of the word.  Bunyan captures the gravity of this gift in his portrait in Interpreter’s House.  Will you consider helping us, by both prayer and financial support, as God continues to send men from these nations to be trained?  Our desire is to be faithful, but we cannot train these men without the assistance of the church.  May the Lord bless your giving to this end.
You may give online here. (Select General International Student Support from the "Choose Donation Category" menu.)