January 2024 Newsletter: Equipping the Church in its Context
January 12, 2024
Equipping the Church in its Context
January 12, 2024

The Buds of a Research Community

As the Arab Church continues to grow, there is an increasing need for Arab theologians and thinkers who can engage the Church in its context, help it strengthen its theological foundation, and produce Arabic-language theological publications that can enrich the Arabic theological library. Our Finlay Graham Library and Research Center and our newly renovated Academic Residence are central to how the Lord is shaping our ministry to answer this need.

Primarily, the Research Center and Academic Residence provide students, scholars, and researchers with long-term access to specialized Arabic and English resources in a supporting environment that is conducive for theological endeavors. Visiting regional and global scholars can benefit from our facilities and the expertise of our Library staff and faculty without needing to worry about accommodation. “Our new facilities directly contribute to our mission,” shared Head Librarian Abdel Kareem Zien El Dien. “Through them, we are creating an environment where theologians and thinkers can carry out targeted academic research using our resources in a space that is dedicated for this purpose.”

The new Library and Research Center also provides a welcoming environment to Church leaders and members wanting to prepare for sermons, have discussions, or even hold Bible studies. Since its inauguration, we have been blessed to see pastors, church leaders, missionaries, and theologians benefit from the research center.

Additionally, the Research Center has helped us serve people from outside the Church who are looking for a place to study or read. “Because most of the resources at the library are theological,” shared Librarian Sandy Eid, “the Research Center is facilitating outreach and communication with our surrounding community.”

Commenting on how the Academic Residence and Research Center serve the vision of ABTS, Academic Dean Walid Zailaa shared:
Our goal is to support emerging scholars who are called to serve local churches and seminaries as writers, teachers, and future faculty. Part of our comprehensive vision is to contribute to the growth of a theological research community in the Arab world, and the Research Center and Academic Residence play an integral role in fulfilling this vision. Having facilities that allow us to provide accommodation and the necessary resources for research is crucial, especially in our current context where they are a rare find.
We thank the Lord for shaping our ministry, and we pray to see a thriving research community formed at ABTS.