Jiho Choi and his spouse travelled to Shawnee from Venezuela where he has begun a campus ministry and is starting a college. His interest is in cultural ministry – music and art , which he taught in Korea before he began his mission work. Choi was the worship leader for the Global Baptist Church in Seoul, Korea – a church of over 30,000 members and probably the largest Baptist church in the world. His father was one of the pioneers of Baptist work in Korea as a church planter and pastor. Choi has expressed how appreciative he is of the scholarship provided by Central, as it would have been very difficult for him to pursue this degree otherwise. His mission work is not subsidized by his former congregation, nor denomination, so he has to raise the support for his ministry.
Central Baptist Theological Seminary (CBTS) is on an exciting trajectory with a revitalized commitment to excel in the preparation of Church leaders who will, in turn, excel in responding to the dynamic needs of today’s churches. Central has restated its Mission, articulated its Values and Vision Statement, and identified five Strategic Priorities aligned with this commitment over the next five years.
The strategic planning process that has resulted in this document was highly participative. The process occurred from January through May 2009 and engaged Board, leadership, faculty, staff, students, alumnae and alumni, and Church leaders.
This process has also been highly focused on strategic opportunities for CBTS to address the Critical Issues that confront the institution and to expedite its transition to growth, financial sustainability and cultural relevance. CBTS will continue to be entrepreneurial in providing diverse modes of delivery of its academic programs; in preparing leaders for their transformative roles in churches; and in developing funding streams and managing resources in support of its Mission and Strategic Priorities.
This Strategic Plan brings together a number of initiatives that have been in progress. It introduces new objectives and tactics to ensure that the curricular initiatives are integrated; that assessment and evaluation occur; and that collaborative relationships with churches and other partners flourish. The five Strategic Priorities encompass:
- Responding to needs of churches through innovative, integrated and effective curricula and programs.
- Being perceived as a “seminary of choice.”
- Enhancing financial sustainability.
- Offering physical environments conducive to learning and building community.
- Managing the talent of the gifted people who are the CBTS family.
The intent is that this Strategic Plan will be the roadmap for CBTS to proceed and progress through the next five years (2009-2014). Progress with the Strategic Priorities will be measured quarterly and with the Vision Statement, annually, and reported to the Board of Trustees. On an annual basis, the CBTS Leadership Team will update the plan to account for competitive, environmental or other issues or opportunities.
To paraphrase one of the newly articulated Values (Creativity), the goal is that this Strategic Plan embodies the Spirit working through CBTS in generative, energizing and innovative ways.
Central Baptist Theological Seminary prepares women and men to transform churches and communities by educating and forming them as Christian leaders who are biblically knowledgeable, theologically articulate, spiritually healthy, humanly sensitive and professionally competent.
- Disciplined Learning: We believe that cultivation of learning skills, the gaining and sharing of knowledge, and practical application are foundational to all that we do.
- Community: We foster a communal process of learning, worship and service.
- Diversity: We respect the richness of diversity as we engage voices of different ages, races, ethnicities, genders and faith traditions in a welcoming and open environment.
- Justice: We model justice and stewardship in fulfillment of our Mission, forming students to act justly, love mercy and walk humbly with God.
- Heritage: We value our place in the history of the universal church, our Trinitarian theology and our historic roots as a Christ-centered Baptist institution.
- Creativity: We participate with the Spirit in generative and innovative methods.
CBTS will be in collaborative and transformative relationships with churches, demonstrate excellence in ministry preparation and have a position of enhanced financial sustainability.