"And as for me, I know that my Redeemer lives...
Even after my skin is destroyed,
Yet from my flesh I shall see God" Job 19:25,26
Not many of us are tested as Job was, he lost everything yet still he confidently affirmed his hope in God, for he knew God would not fail him. What a wonderful and secure hope we have! Here, in Trinco, we are surrounded by many gods, Murugan, Shiva, Kali, yet there is none to compare with our God, who is always faithful, all powerful, all forgiving and full of lovingkindness. How blessed we are to be His children and know Him. May the wonder of His condescension never cease to amaze us and cause us to bow down before Him with hearts full of adoration and worship.
Changes to the Board
We are thankful for the invaluable and timely help that our Company Secretary, Mr. Allan Wijeyekoon, Attorney-at-Law and a former Registrar of Companies has given us during the last few months. He initially drew up our constitution back in 1999 and helped us secure our government registration. Recently he alerted us to the fact that our Board of Governors was not properly constituted. According to BTC’s Articles of Association the president of the Board of Governors should either be one of the Founder Directors (original members), or, if a non-member, should be accepted into membership at one of their meetings. To keep within the law, BTC was therefore compelled to regularize the Board of Governors. The Founder Directors met together on August 9 th and duly elected a new Board of Governors. We are thankful for the sacrificial service that Mr. Ragavan Alphonsus gave to BTC for the last 2 ½ years as interim president; he did much to help us become established as a college. We now welcome Dr. C. S. Thevabalasingham as the President of BTC and Rev. Lakshman Peiris as the Vice President. Dr. Charles Hoole, the principal, was elected as General Secretary and Mr. Rex Yesuratnam, our Administrative Supervisor was elected as Treasurer.
We are in the process of inviting other proven BTC supporters onto the Board, including foreign nationals, with the aim of having a more comprehensive BoG, representing more fully the different regions and ethnic groups within the country.
Our new officials
Both Dr. C. S. Thevabalasingham and Rev. Lakshman Peiris have given considerable support to BTC from its inception. Being accomplished men of vision and longstanding evangelical leaders in Sri Lanka, they both represented the country at the Lausanne Conference in 1974 and became signatories of the Lausanne Covenant.
Dr. C. S. Thevabalasingham, from Jaffna, has been the Director of Every Home Crusade for a number of decades. He is also the Founder and Editor of Direction magazine, the only national English language Christian magazine in Sri Lanka serving primarily the evangelical church. More recently he became the Founding Principal of the South Asia Institute of Theology in Norton Bridge in the central hill country.
Rev. Canon Lakshman Peiris, from Colombo, is a Founder member of AIMS (Anglican Inland Mission), Margaya and AEF (Anglican Evangelical Fellowship). He has published many books and tracts on reaching Buddhists and taught courses on Buddhism as a guest lecturer at All Nations Christian College in UK.
A Welshman joins the faculty!
It was a great joy to welcome back Pastor Martin Lloyd, from Goshen Church, Rhuddlan, Wales in July. Last time he stayed with us for a week, this time a month, next time….. we’re hoping for a year!! His friendliness and warm character enabled him to forge firm relationships with the students and staff despite the language barrier. The students found his course on Pastoral Counseling both informative and challenging. One pastor student found his insightful experiences from his church in Wales particularly helpful for his own church situation in the Vanni. Martin also taught a course on Christology for the newer students and preached in a number of local churches, meeting other local pastors and believers. His only respite from the heat of Trinco was a few days in the relative cool of Hatton. There he shared warm fellowship with Pastor Sivakumar and Jeyaseelan, preaching at their church on Sunday and visiting a number of the believers on the tea estates.
We also enjoyed a brief visit from the Swiss Missionary Alliance team who were on a short break from their building work at LBC in Kandy.
Congratulations to our final year student, Sathyendra, who got married to Anusha on July 23rd. A group of 15 traveled from Baldaeus to attend the wedding in Colombo, starting out at 6:30am and arriving back at 4am the following morning just in time to catch a couple of hours sleep before chapel and lectures at 8am! Exhausting, but very enjoyable, particularly for those students for whom it was their very first trip to the bustling city of Colombo. Sathyendra has already taught a few courses at SAIT in Norton Bridge (mentioned previously) and they appear keen to take him on a more permanent basis after he has completed his B.Th. at BTC this term.
There are also wedding bells for another of our students, Aruntha, from Mannar. We wish Aruntha well as she makes the transition to her new married life in Australia.
Once again it's ‘all-shuffle’ for the resident students this term as we had to vacate our family hostel at the end of July because the owners had sold up. Celin has moved back into the ladies’ hostel and Julie’s family of six will move into the warden’s residence there, when Shreeraj vacates the quarters. Another couple has just joined us, Jeyaseelan and his wife, Nirmala, from the hill country. Thankfully there is enough space to absorb them into the male hostel the expandable walls are working!
Up-country culture shock!
A visit to Hatton and the tea estates for field training proved quite a culture shock for six of our students recently. The desperately poor and sparton living conditions of the estate workers was a shock even for those coming from the war-torn Northeast. It rained continually as the group traveled around from one estate to another, but each time they got off the bus the rain stopped and began again only when they left after the meeting was finished. This wonderful visible assurance of the Lord’s presence and blessing upon their labours gave them much encouragement and boldness to witness. Many would gather as the group began to sing expecting to receive some material benefit, but instead they were given the simple true Gospel message. One student, Pratheepkaran, showed particular talent with the children. A new children’s work has begun on two estates as a result of their visit and one family have opened up their home for regular meetings.
On the Web!
Thanks to Ian Day of Every Nation Gospel Fellowship, Southall, UK, we now have our own website for you to visit: www.baldaeus.com. We hope you will find it informative. Please let us know of improvements we can make and interesting additions we could add.
Our Lord’s faithfulness and yours!
It is amazing to realise that we are just beginning the 3 rd term of our third year! How thankful we are to our Lord for his faithfulness in providing for all our needs. It has been very encouraging to see our support grow, particularly from churches and individuals.
Thank you all once again so much for your generosity and desire to stand with us in this work.