Summer 2024

Alumni Greetings

It has been good to connect with a number of you over the past several weeks.


On April 20, 2024, we hosted the Graduation Breakfast for our Northwest ACTS graduates. Congratulations to Minsun Song, MDIV; Hyesun Jin, MDIV; Eunyoung Seo, MA; Jongmin Jung, MDIV; and Pilljoo Jeon, MDIV!

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The Graduation Breakfast was a great time of celebration. Alumni Giselle Jackson gave a prayer of blessing, with President Barton Priebe giving a prayer of dedication. Alumni Dr. Byungsuk Kim challenged our grads to be faithful in ministry by remembering the encouragement found in scripture. Each grad then shared their future hopes in ministry and was presented with a gift from Alumni Director, Gwen Reese.


We invite you to join us in serving at future Alumni Association activities. On October 19 we will host the Graduation Brunch, as well as Gradation Reception, for graduates from Northwest’s CBTE and Korean DMIN programs. This event will be hosted at South Delta Baptist Church. If you would like to participate by assisting with the brunch, ceremony, or reception, we welcome your help.


I hope to connect with many of you over the next couple of months to bring you up to date on the exciting things happening at Northwest and with the Alumni Association. Be sure to complete the Alumni Questionnaire if you have not yet done so.


I trust you will have an enjoyable summer.


Blessings, Gwen Reese, Alumni Director

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Alumna Interview with Terry Kemp

Terry Kemp graduated from NBTC in 198? Terry serves as the Kitchen Coordinator at South Delta Baptist Church. Terry is married to Paul and has three adult daughters, one son-in-law, and two grandchildren.


What did you appreciate about your studies at Northwest? 


I really enjoyed my studies at Northwest—Theology 101 was particularly impactful and helped broaden my biblical understanding. I initially enrolled just for the one-year Bible certificate, but then felt compelled to go back for a second year and completed the Bible diploma. I learned so much, and felt my Christian walk was positively impacted as I learned more in-depth about the Bible and its history! While I was there a new Long-Term Care certificate program started, so I completed that including a practicum at Granview Towers and was able to gain a small intro into the medical field under the leadership of Joy Lee.


How did your time studying at Northwest prepare you for the work and ministries you are involved in?


Well with the Long-Term Care Certificate I gained employment as a long-term care aide for a few years until we had children! But beyond the practical skills and knowledge, I learned the importance of servant leadership—which was wonderfully modelled to us by President Doug Harris and the other professors. As well, they all demonstrated strong Christian values and well-presented Biblical knowledge, which has been foundational for my own approach to serving and caring for others in ministry.


Describe your ministries since graduating from Northwest.


I have been fortunate to be involved with a variety of ministries at South Delta Baptist Church, from Children’s Ministries to Choir Ministry to the Stephen’s Ministry program, and currently, lots of work in the kitchen! My highlights have been working as a trained volunteer providing lay counselling with the Stephen’s Ministry, and now for a number of years, I’ve been volunteering with and leading our food ministries. I am currently the Kitchen Coordinator and work alongside an incredible volunteer team who cook up all sorts of tasty and wonderful food for recurring programs and fellowship events! We host memorial service receptions, and for our food ministries we host a women’s social event twice a month, a senior’s luncheon once a month, a communion lunch for the whole church once a month, and other events as they present themselves. We strive to be a happy and friendly kitchen and to show the love of Christ in our conduct with each other, while also striving for excellence in our food service for those who come to our events. It’s a busy kitchen and our team rises to the challenge with lots of love, good humour, and good food!


What is a way that you have seen God bring good to your life from a bad situation in your life?


When I was going through some challenging health problems 15 years ago, God cared for me and provided for me. I was in a place of fear, but by relying on Him I truly learned “the peace that passes understanding,” and have been grateful for his care and protection ever since.


Family info


We like to joke that I also received my “M.R.S.” degree at Northwest, when I married Paul Kemp, a fellow Northwest alumni! Paul Kemp and I met at Northwest in the early eighties and we had the privilege of marrying in 1985. Paul and I love to do life together. We walk our dog and with each other most days. And we hope to explore and travel and see new sights or old friends, make new friends, and always keep up with family. We have three daughters who we raised in Tsawwassen, and who are all now grown. Our eldest daughter lives in Toronto (too far away!), our middle daughter lives with her husband, son, and new baby girl in Vancouver, and our youngest lives in Vancouver as well. We love being parents and now grandparents, and our family enjoys all the time we can find to be together during weekends, birthdays, special holidays, and with other extended family. We are so grateful for God’s provision in our lives, including our beautiful family, and hope to continue to serve Him for many years!


Faith and Feminism: An Oxymoron or a Natural Coupling?

Alumni Connect with Holly Faith Nelson

I grew up as a Fellowship Baptist in the Lower Mainland after immigrating from Scotland to Canada with my parents, grandmother, and siblings. I intended to go straight to university after high school, but my mother persuaded me to attend Bible college at the last minute, so I decided at the time to attend Northwest Baptist Theological College (NBTC) rather than UBC, a decision I have never regretted. During my post-secondary studies, I became very interested in several subjects, including theology and literature, and gender and literature. The former interest grew out of the fascination that I developed for theology at NBTC when I earned my two-year diploma. I found myself absorbed by many theological debates and was most grateful (though exceedingly surprised) to receive the W.D. Robinson Memorial Prize for Theology in 1986.


My interest in gender grew out of my early experiences in church; I noticed that while some of the views held by my church on the nature and roles of men and women were based on particular readings of Scripture, many others emerged from secular Western cultural traditions. From my teenage years onward, I studied the representation of gender in the Bible and the harmful ways in which Scripture was sometimes misread (intentionally or otherwise), leading to the mistreatment or abuse of women in the church.


When I undertook my undergraduate and graduate studies at Simon Fraser University, my focus in the area of gender and theology shifted. I became more interested in explaining to fellow students and professors (the majority of whom were atheists or agnostics) why I believed that Christianity, if enacted in a truly Christ-centered way, actually gave women agency and authority. That is to say, I hoped to persuade them that Christianity was, in fact, pro-woman and envisioned women as of equal value and worth as men. I now know what I was trying to articulate was a kind of “Christian feminism,” a term which make some Christians’ and some secular feminists’ toes curl. For many, it is an oxymoron, but for me, it was a life-giving discovery.


I personally experienced no conflict between feminism – the “advocacy of equality of the sexes and the establishment of the political, social and economic rights of the female sex” (Oxford English Dictionary) – and my Christian faith. Of course, Christian feminists and secular feminists often hold different views in a number of areas and the former might define “the equality of the sexes” differently than would the latter. Nevertheless, countless Christian feminists (women and men) of all stripes have relied on Scripture to motivate them to help free women from harmful and abusive practices that emerge from the view that men are intellectually, physically, and / or spiritually superior to women.


My ideas in this area led me to co-found the Gender Studies Institute (GSI) at Trinity Western University in 2008, which I have co-directed since then. The mission of the Institute is to “foster interdisciplinary teaching, intellectual dialogue, research, and collaboration in all areas of gender studies, as informed by our “Christian faith.” Over the past 15 years, the GSI has hosted about 80 events on a wide range of topics related to gender that might otherwise be relegated to the shadows or “dark corners,” to borrow William Shakespeare’s phrase from Measure for Measure.

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My interest in gender and theology also inspired me to publish articles and books on gender, religion, and literature. My most recent project in this area is Feminism and Faith in the Lives and Works of Late Medieval and Early Modern Women (1450-1805), which will be published by Amsterdam University Press in June 2024. I edited this collection with the Christian scholar Dr. Adrea Johnson, the granddaughter of the much-admired Baptist Pastor Peter Teichroeb. As we write on the book cover, in this book we “present thirteen original case studies on the diversity, complexity, and subtlety of the intersection of faith and feminism in the lives and works of twenty-two Christian women writers over a 350-year period in six nations.” In doing so, we challenge “the view that monotheistic religions only constrict and oppress women, stifling their agency, autonomy, and authority.”


I have been able to spend so much time and effort writing and publishing on such topics only because of the ongoing unconditional support of my husband Russell Nelson, B.A. (SFU), M.A (UBC), the program manager of policy planning at the City of Richmond. He and I met as students at NBTC, where he earned a one-year certificate, and have been married for 36 years. We have two children, a 25-year-old son who recently graduated from Trinity Western University (TWU) with a B.A. in English and a daughter who is in her third year at TWU where she majors in English and works as an archival assistant.


Holly Faith Nelson, PhD, completed her two-year diploma at NBTC in 1986. Holly serves as a Professor in the Department of English and Creative Writing, as the Co-Director of the Gender Studies Institute, and as a Graduate Stream Coordinator of the MA in Interdisciplinary Humanities program. She is married to Russell Nelson (who completed his one-year certificate at NBTC in 1985) with whom she has two adult children.

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