Is the future of Northwest Yearly Meeting important to you? I would think so if you are taking time to read this newsletter. Most people would agree that having excellent leadership is vital to the growth and health of churches in NWYM.
Since the beginning of November, I have had the wonderful honor of serving as the director of the Friends Center at George Fox Evangelical Seminary. This is a quarter-time position through NWYM, and I am finding it to be a great complement to pastoring at West Chehalem Friends. I get to follow some fantastic people who have served as director—Dick Sartwell, Carole Spencer, and Colin Saxton—and I get to hang out with some wonderful students and faculty.
What is the Friends Center? It is not a separate building or program, it is simply a way of encouraging leadership development among our Friends seminary students who are seeking the Lord for direction, calling, and ministry opportunities. We are blessed to have so many bright minds and willing hearts among us who want to serve the Lord through Northwest Yearly Meeting.
My role is to encourage these students through visitation, prayer, meals and coffee together, worship time, and casual conversation. This is the most enjoyable part of my role. I also work with our committee to designate scholarships for Friends students. Thanks to generous giving we are able to cover up to 50 percent of tuition for a good number of our students. Also, I get to develop Friends-related courses that students can take to enrich their experience and prepare them to serve among Friends.
If you would like to learn more about the Friends Center or find out how you can help students with scholarship funds, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Contributed by Paul Almquist, Friends Center director. Paul Almquist serves as senior pastor at West Chehalem Friends Church and is married to Nancy, who is a Mary Kay sales director. Their sons Mark and Tim attend George Fox University, and son Andrew attends Newberg High School.