A Letter to Awana Korea
Updated: May 9, 2019
It is a letter from Jordan Newton, a professor of Corban University. He taught International Leadership and Gospel Truth. Campers loved him so much since he showed the love of Christ through his classes.
Greetings from one of your brothers in Christ Jesus here in the United States!
My name is Jordan Newton and I am one of the ministry professors from Corban University in Salem, Oregon, USA. I had the distinct pleasure of teaching both a Leadership class and Gospel Truths class to the AWANA Korea group when they were here in August. It was truly an honor, privilege, and joy to be their instructor!
As a university professor I usually teach Bible or theology classes to our traditional undergraduate students. However, since 2016 I have taken on more responsibilities with our international students and have found myself quite passionate about using my education to strengthen the church worldwide. This has meant that I have been discipling Indonesian students here on campus and in January my wife and I traveled to Cameroon to share with the churches there. Since I have a background in both teaching and pastoring in a local church, the Lord has called me to serve in various capacities. So, when I first heard about this AWANA Korea group I volunteered right away. This year was my first-time teaching for AWANA Korea and I had a wonderful experience.
While the AWANA Korea students were quite a bit younger than my usual college aged students, they impressed me with their Biblical and theological literacy. Several of the students not only showed a thorough biblical knowledge of stories and events, but they also seemed to understand theological concepts about human depravity and Christ’s atonement. I doubt a group of similar aged American students would have been able to take part in these kind of discussions, especially not if it was in a foreign language. Students helped dramatize different aspects of the gospel message to clarify meaning and help illustrate the work of Christ. My favorite part of the gospel class may have been illustrating how Christ makes us righteous by being our substitute!
Similarly, the leadership class was a really enjoyable experience. I could tell that some of the students were really wrestling with who they are and what vision they hope to accomplish for the future. The students were so respectful and usually dedicated many hours to doing my homework projects throughout the week. This group really exceeded my expectations for such young believers and many of them shared with me their visions for their future. It was such a pleasure.
For an example in one of my leadership class sessions, Charlie shared with me his vision for AWANA Korea and the work of transforming the Korean youth through English education and the gospel with the hope of one day transforming all of Korea. Charlies vision was not only inspiring, it was very instructional for the students to see how his life is modeling leadership principles. I was also really touched by the work the Lord has done in Amir. I am certain God has good plans for him as well. Both the students and leaders were so easy to work with.
This group of students has blessed me tremendously and as a college professor I have never felt more appreciated by any group of students in all my years of teaching. Korean students certainly know how to be both thankful and respectful. Your churches are bearing fruit in these students.
May the Lord continue to bless your ministry. Thank you for coming and sharing with us.
Your brother in Christ