When New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary (NOBTS) President Chuck Kelley began his day Aug. 7 he had little idea of the blessings to come: Two gifts totaling $1 million dollars for student scholarships were received that day.
“This has been one of the greatest Mondays in the history of the institution and quite an exciting way to begin a new academic year,” Kelley said. “It was a ‘Million Dollar Monday.’”
NOBTS will immediately distribute more than $200,000 of the money this school year designated for student scholarships. And one-half will be used to endow a scholarship fund that will provide annual scholarships for years to come.
“We rejoice at what God has done to lay the needs of seminary students on the hearts of Southern Baptists,” Kelley said. “Scholarships are becoming ever more important for those God has called to the church and the mission field.”
The gifts will assist African-American students studying on the main campus or at the North Georgia Hub in metro Atlanta; small church pastors in Montana; and expository preaching students from Mississippi.
‘Need to become more … diverse’
One anonymous donor sent a check for $200,000 to be used immediately as a part of the Fred Luter Jr. African-American Scholarship Program — a scholarship the donor established in 2011. Of that, $150,000 will provide scholarships in New Orleans; $50,000 will fund scholarships at the North Georgia Hub.
“Southern Baptists need to become more and more racially and ethnically diverse if we are to reach our nation and our world,” Kelley said. “An anonymous donor has been greatly blessed and inspired by the ministry of Pastor Fred Luter and wants more God-called African-Americans like Dr. Luter to be able to receive quality theological education.” (BP)