Theological Higher Education in Liberia: a Case Study of the Liberia Baptist Theological Seminary

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The Liberia Baptist Theological Seminary (LBTS), opened on March 4, 1976, exists to train men and women for Christian ministry. It offers four-year degree programs leading to bachelor of arts in theology, bachelor of arts in religious education, and bachelor of divinity. Three major periods characterized its growth and development. the first, from 1976 to 1989, was a period of growth and prosperity. the second, from 1990-2003, was a time of immense challenge for the seminary because of the Liberian Civil War. the final period, from 2003 to the present, shows the seminary attempting to re-position itself for the future ... continued below

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Manyango, Wilfred M. May 2012.

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  • Manyango, Wilfred M.

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The Liberia Baptist Theological Seminary (LBTS), opened on March 4, 1976, exists to train men and women for Christian ministry. It offers four-year degree programs leading to bachelor of arts in theology, bachelor of arts in religious education, and bachelor of divinity. Three major periods characterized its growth and development. the first, from 1976 to 1989, was a period of growth and prosperity. the second, from 1990-2003, was a time of immense challenge for the seminary because of the Liberian Civil War. the final period, from 2003 to the present, shows the seminary attempting to re-position itself for the future as a premier Christian higher education institution in Liberia. One of the challenges remaining, however, is the lack of historical documentation on factors impacting the growth of the seminary. This historical case study research sought to provide a comprehensive overview of the LBTS within the context of theological higher education in Liberia and the Liberian Civil War. the four major purposes guiding this research were: 1. Historical—to document and evaluate the rise, survival, developments and achievements of LBTS; 2. Institutional—to gain insight into how the seminary operates; 3. to document the effects of the 13-year civil war on the seminary; and 4. to identify the perceived challenges and needs of the seminary. Study participants included administrators, faculty, staff, students, graduates, and trustees, both past and present. Data were gathered through semi-structured interviews and document analysis. with thorough analysis of all data, seven major themes surfaced: 1.The lack of funding and qualified national faculty; 2.The relationship between missionaries and nationals; 3. the need for partnership development nationally and internationally; 4. the strong impact of the civil war on the seminary; 5. Realignment of seminary mission; and 6. the need for Bible training center and seminary perseverance during the war. As the seminary positions itself for the future, it continues to experience need in the areas of financial and educational resources, Internet technology, and the acquisition of qualified national faculty.

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  • May 2012

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  • Nov. 6, 2012, 3:03 p.m.

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  • Nov. 16, 2016, 12:55 p.m.

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Manyango, Wilfred M. Theological Higher Education in Liberia: a Case Study of the Liberia Baptist Theological Seminary, dissertation, May 2012; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115115/: accessed February 21, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .