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Partners, November 2011



BRENTWOOD, Tenn. — NationsUniversity, a church-supported distance-learning program that offers academic degrees in religious studies, recently reached an enrollment of  5,006 students. That’s an all-time record for the 15-year-old program, said President Alan D. Cooper.
The total enrollment represents 143 countries. About 63 percent of the student body lives outside the United States. Students in the Middle East represent more than 10 percent of NationsUniversity’s student body. Thirty-seven percent of its students are in the U.S. About three-fourths of the U.S. students are incarcerated, representing more than 100 U.S. prisons.
“We … give the glory to God for leading the students to us — students who are poor, incarcerated or disadvantaged and have no other real opportunity for Christian education,” Cooper said.

OKLAHOMA CITY — Oklahoma Christian University is dedicating its new indoor baseball facility to a late New York Yankee who helped rebuild its program.
The Bobby Murcer Indoor Training Facility — a structure that represents the last step in the program’s revival — honors the former outfielder and broadcaster who died of brain cancer in 2008.
The five-time All-Star attended the Memorial Road Church of Christ next to the Oklahoma Christian campus and had strong ties to many associated with the university.

NAIROBI, Kenya — The Kenya Christian Industrial Training Institute recently graduated 22 preachers from its Institute of Practical Christian Ministry, or IPCM.
The graduates will return to their home congregations “better able to meet the spiritual needs of their communities,” institute leaders said.
“The IPCM program is dedicated to providing in-depth biblical instruction to the hundreds of untrained preachers currently working with churches in East Africa without the benefit of formal Bible instruction,” according to a news release.

LUBBOCK, Texas — Sunset recently opened its new School of Biblical Leadership with 17 students in Lubbock and 19 students in three remote locations.
A video conferencing system allows the institute to broadcast leadership classes live, so students can see, hear and participate in class proceedings in real time. The evening program is designed for anyone wanting to improve leadership skills.



HIALEAH, Fla. — Efrain Valverde, longtime minister, writer and host of “Con La Biblia Abierta” (“With the Open Bible“), died Sept. 4 after a long battle with cancer. Valverde, 74, was a member of the Hialeah Church of Christ.
Valverde appeared on 137 episodes of the Spanish-language program that featured Bible studies and discussions of issues Christians face. The program appears on televisions in 20 countries and all 50 states of the U.S., said Rex Morgan of Hialeah-based Christian Productions International, who worked with Valverde since 1989.
Thousands of viewers have requested World Bible School study material as a result of the program, Morgan said. Church members will continue to air shows as a tribute to Valverde’s legacy.



RALEIGH, N.C. — Churches of Christ Disaster Relief Effort was honored during the 38th annual Mid-Atlantic Evangelism Seminar hosted by the Brooks Avenue Church of Christ.
Since 1990, the Tennessee-based disaster relief organization has distributed more than $106 million in emergency food and supplies in response to 300 disasters in 42 states, leaders said.
The award presentation was made during a luncheon at the evangelism seminar, which featured speakers from North Carolina, Texas, Alabama, Florida, California and Tennessee.

Filed under: Partners Staff Reports

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