You could hear the shouts of excitement as early as 6am on graduation day, Saturday, 18 November 2017. It did seem like some of the graduates had difficulty getting enough sleep on Friday night. However, this was not due to any negative factor, but it was sheer gladness. Inside the boy’s dormitory there was one constant sound, “Yes! Yes! Yes! This is the day.” The wait was almost over. The morning was not making things any easier though, because it was apparently moving at a snail’s pace. All eyes were fixed on 2pm for the start of the ceremony where fifteen amazing people were to be awarded a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology.
These women and men laboured day and night for three years in their studies. For some it had been long since they were last in class and they had to readjust their minds. Some had just finished high school and were eager to further their education. Still, some had a few years out of school and some adjustments had to be made as well. What stands out in them is their willingness to leave the comforts of their countries and families and devote a precious three years to study and preparation.
These people refused to be counted among the 5% of African youth which attains higher education. Those outside the youth bracket also refused to let age decide how far they can go academically. African Christian College became the suitable place for them to have some dreams fulfilled and steps towards others taken.
We consider ourselves richly blessed to be able to contribute to the development of women and men in Africa. The dream that was established fifty years ago has found its way here and we have been privileged enough to contribute to it through this class. We know and realize that the work we did with the class of 2017 was not just another job we had to do, but it was for a greater course – the kingdom of God.
We launch these graduates back into the world like a skilled warrior releasing a well sharpened arrow towards his prey. We are very confident that these are the people who will change communities, churches, organizations and institutions for the better through the gospel.
As much as they physically leave us, they will always live inside of us. We did share not only knowledge but our very own lives with each other through the love of Christ. It is that love that we have confidence in to sustain them in every work their hands find to do. We look forward with great enthusiasm to hear about what they are doing back home for our Lord.