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Regional News Sun, 25 Jan 2004

Forty-five pastor graduate from BTCP

Accra, Jan. 25, GNA - Forty-five pastors and church leaders from various churches on Sunday graduated from the Bible Training Centre for Pastors and Church Leaders (BTCP) at a ceremony in Accra. The Centre, established in Ghana in 1994, has trained almost 3,000 pastors and church leaders while 723 pastors are currently benefiting from its programmes.

The new graduates are made up of nine females and 36 males who undertook one-and-a-half years of intensive training in Bible study and doctrinal methods.

Speaking at the function Reverend Sam Oppong, Director of BTCP said the aim of the centre was to provide an effective, comprehensive, and cost effective curriculum to the pastor and church elders wherever they might be located.

He said the BTCP's programme was different from the traditional Bible College and the correspondence school because the course was Bible centred, practical and church based.

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Rev Oppong also said the BTCP was not in competition with the traditional Bible or correspondence schools, but rather a complement to the existing traditional forms and methods of providing theological training for pastors and church leaders.

He announced that the centre would introduce three new courses on Christian Theology, Islam and HIV/AIDS while at the same time, work towards the possibility of awarding their graduates diplomas. Lieutenant Colonel (Rtd) Jacob K. Sackey, Course Prefect of the BTCP in his report expressed gratitude to the Director and the instructors for helping them to complete the course successfully. He suggested that students should be made to pay a little towards the upkeep of the instructors particularly in the area of transportation, since they did not get paid for the selfless job they did.

Commissioning the new graduates, Reverend Steve Asante, Vice President of Ghana Baptist Convention, charged them to lead exemplary lives.

He said their motive for joining the ministry should be to spread the gospel according to Christ Jesus, saying, "The message of your ministry should be Bible centred, practical and church based."

Source: GNA
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