Welcome Back, Ann Plantinga Kapteyn
Published by Calvin Seminary
Twenty-three years after graduating from Calvin Seminary with an MTS and eighteen years after leaving Grand Rapids to serve overseas with Wycliffe Bible Translators, I find myself back at Calvin Seminary as the Lee S. Huizenga Distinguished Missionary in Residence. This isn’t my first time back; several times during our missionary career I was drawn back to Calvin Seminary to hone skills necessary for ministry. The first time was after our first few years living in Brazil. My husband Ray and I lived in Brazil for six years as we served with Wycliffe Bible Translators and SIL*. Ray was a missionary pilot and I filled various teaching and administrative roles. In Brazil I saw the deep need for pastoral care for missionaries who are far from home and live under great stress, so I took several pastor care classes at the seminary during our home service. Later when we moved to Cameroon in 2006, I was more directly involved training national Bible translators, and I realized I needed a refresher in Greek and New Testament courses. Prof. Dean Deppe was kind enough to allow me to audit his course. I am thankful to Calvin Seminary for not only providing me with a great education at the beginning of my career, but also for the continuing education I received along the way as my ministry role changed and grew over the years.
Now I have another occasion to spend time at Calvin Seminary, this time as the Missionary in Residence. In this role I have the opportunity to have conversations with students about all kinds of topics, from missions to parenting to linguistics to worldview differences. My special interest is the study of cultural differences and how this knowledge should mold and inform a person’s ministry. I plan to teach a Cultural Anthropology and Contextual Ministry course in which we will examine these issues together. During my year at Calvin Seminary I will also continue my work with Wycliffe Bible Translators and SIL, traveling several times to the Central African Republic to work with national Bible translators there.
I look forward to seeing what God will bring out of this wonderful opportunity to participate in every aspect of the life of Calvin Seminary this year.
*SIL is a faith-based non-profit organization which serves language communities worldwide, building their capacity for sustainable language development, by means of research, translation, training and materials development.
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