From Joni B. Hannigan and the Baptist Press.
“Pastors and lay leaders are learning how -– and why — to expand Bible-based education at two-day “Christian School 101” workshops sponsored by the Southern Baptist Association of Christian Schools.
“Our goal is to help pastors reduce the fear factor in starting a Christian school or home school network in their churches,” said Ed Gamble, executive director of the Florida-based association. “Nationally, we see a rising wave of pastors and lay leaders who feel God is calling them to this endeavor, but obstacles like the lack of how-to knowledge are preventing them from moving ahead.”
An Aug. 27-28 Christian School 101 workshop is underway at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, N.C., and will be repeated at least three more times at other locations to give participants the basic tools and information they need to plan and start a well-run Christian school.
“God has impressed upon us the need to take what looks to some folks like an insurmountable wall and make it look more like a picket fence by teaching them how to start a school and providing them with the resources they need to get started,” Gamble told the Florida Baptist Witness.
Gamble made a case for providing a Kingdom education for children by citing the parallels between Judges 2:7-15 and modern America and by considering the estimated 16,000 hours children spend in classrooms through high school.
“If you want to reach and disciple children, then take the Gospel to them every day, through every subject, right where they are — in school,” Gamble said, noting the endless possibilities if Southern Baptists planted thousands of schools and opened them to the public as they already do Sunday School and Vacation Bible School.
“Schools have helped change our culture for the last 30 to 40 years, but not for the better,” he said. “God can use Christian schools to change our culture in one generation.”
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