we believe in laymen
Free Will Baptist Bible College: a great place for Free Will Baptist Laymen
by Jack Williams, director of communications
To find out more about Free Will Baptist Bible College, visit www.fwbbc.edu.
WE BELIEVE IN LAYMEN AT FREE WILL BAPTIST BIBLE COLLEGE. Don’t misunderstand. We also believe in pastors, preachers, and missionaries. Always have, always will. That’s who we are, and we don’t intend to change.
But while we champion the ministry, we also believe in Free Will Baptist laymen with a commitment you won’t find anywhere else. We believe in laymen who are willing to take a chance and enroll in a school that for more than 60 years has been known as a preacher college.
We take that trust, add four years or so of Bible-oriented teaching, and graduate the finest bankers in the community, some of the most gifted musicians to ever tame the ivories. We also produce professional-grade teachers for public and private schools, as well as nurses and pre-law students for the medical and legal communities.
Lay leadership at FWBBC
We respect laymen at FWBBC. That’s why a layman heads up our Business Department, a layman leads the English Department, a layman runs the Athletics Department, a layman directs the Teacher Education Department, and a layman chairs the General Education Department.
We trust laymen with the great truths of the Bible, with the mystery of the English language, with our finances, with a whistle and the authority to call fouls on the rest of us, with classroom professionalism, and more. In fact, 60 percent of our teachers are members of the laity. Word is getting around about us.
Nearly 70 percent of our students enroll as laymen who want to learn biblical principles to take into their chosen professions that range from psychologists and counselors to computer support personnel and teachers for the nation’s classrooms.
We’ve learned that the resource pool where God finds preachers and pastors, missionaries, and Christian statesmen is the creative group of people called the laity. When God wants a preacher, He calls a farmer or a welder into the ministry. When He wants a home or international missionary, He always knows where to find one—the lay pool.
Through the years, eight laymen have been elected to the FWBBC Board of Trustees. Two of those outstanding laymen now serve on the Board of Trustees—Tennessee middle school principal Dr. Greg Ketteman and South Carolina businessman A.C. Allen.
Place for Training Laity
Laymen trust FWBBC with their sons and daughters. Laymen pay the bills here. They provide the students; they fill the classrooms. Laymen serve at every level on the FWBBC campus—administrators handling the college’s finances, administrative assistants coordinating schedules and projects, receptionists directing hundreds of daily phone calls, supervisors in charge of plant operations, recruitment directors to attract new students, and researchers to collect data for strategic planning.
We do more than talk about respecting laymen—we put the talk into practice. Thank God for Free Will Baptist laymen. And we do! Some of our finest students who enrolled as laymen now serve as denominational leaders and church planters around the world. Others write articles and books, print literature, design brochures, and edit magazines. Some provide technology for distance learning opportunities or serve on professional boards across the nation.
We love laymen. Our mission at FWBBC is to educate leaders to serve Christ, His Church, and His world through biblical thought and life. When the college incorporated six decades ago, the charter clearly stated that the institution existed for the purpose of equipping Christian workers and teachers of both sexes for Christian service.
That’s what we do at FWBBC. Training laymen is one of our defining principles. Are you looking for a college that embraces lay leadership, a college where you can invest your children and your money? That’s FWBBC—a community of faith and learning where laymen are honored, their leadership respected, their skills honed, and their dreams encouraged.
Future of Free Will Baptist Laymen
We hold to this important principle, because our churches are filled with many laymen and few ordained ministers. Our job is not only to train pastors and missionaries, but also to train that vast army of laymen. The 2006 Free Will Baptist Yearbook lists 3,959 ordained ministers (p. A-232) out of a denominational membership topping 300,000 (p. A-55).
That’s why we open our arms to laymen. That’s why we broaden our curriculum to make sure that laymen graduate as biblically, philosophically, and professionally prepared as pastors and missionaries. Free Will Baptist laity carry the load in denominational outreach, in soul-winning, in tithing, and all the rest. That’s why at FWBBC the laity is welcomed and wanted. We believe in laymen.
We expect our graduates to change their communities, lead their churches, support their denomination, make a difference wherever they are…and they do. Here at FWBBC, we believe in laymen.
What about you? Do you believe in laymen? If you do, perhaps it’s time to throw your support behind the institution that for 64 years has trained thousands of Free Will Baptist laymen. Check us out. Drop by for a personal tour of the campus and classrooms. Talk with the students and faculty. We believe in God’s holy laity, and that means we believe in you.