Illinois Conference of the United Church of Christ, Westchester, Illinois
All over the world, people studying to be ministers struggle with seminary debt. For some, the anticipated burden deters them from pursuing their calling. In China, the lack of ministers is a real problem as the Christian population continues to grow rapidly. There are currently 30 million Christians in China, gathering in more than 14,000 churches and 30,000 homes to pray, read scripture and worship. Guizhou Theological Training Center has been supported by the China Christian Council since its beginning in 1993. Many of the students come from poor rural villages and cannot afford even the $22 per month for meals at the school. Global Ministries and the Tuthill Commission of the Illinois Conference provided 80 students with additional scholarships ranging from $59 to $73, which allowed some of the poorest students to continue their studies. These students will be able, some day, to minister to others and nurture those with a calling of their own.