The term “Bible Chair” is an adaption of a term commonly used in colleges and universities. A “chair” can be established in any department to draw students due to the subject matter or the professor teaching in that position. In Texas the Bible Chair is not directly on campus but nearby and funded entirely by churches and individuals.
Students can obtain an associate degree in religion accredited by Amarillo College. Amarillo Bible Chair is the only Chair at Amarillo College that teaches Bible courses for credit toward a religion degree. The academic classes are taught by William Mural Worthey. These students can then transfer to a university and pursue a bachelor’s and/or master’s degree in religion.
With summer classes, AC will be returning to in-person instruction. Students and teachers are looking forward to being back in the classroom. Several of our students have really struggled due to not having proper equipment and connections to do online classes. There are some advantages to making classes available online. I had a couple of new students who were enrolled at other universities (Oklahoma State University and West Texas A & M). They were able to take Bible classes while pursuing their degrees elsewhere.
Brother Ken McLaughlin has worked up floor plans for a new Bible Chair facility. Our elders are now studying the layout and estimating the cost. Due to the pandemic, prices for building materials have skyrocketed. We are considering a 40 x 80 metal frame structure with brick exterior. Due to recent contributions and matching funds, our balance needed to raise has been reduced to $115,650. There will be additional costs due to material cost increases and some interior furnishings. Our goal now seems to be in reach, but we need your help to make it a reality. I appreciate Ken McLaughlin and his daughter, Kimberly Black, for their work on plans for the project. They worked on two concepts: an addition to the present building and new building plans.
Our monthly supporters have been consistent through a difficult year. With church budgets challenged, you have continued faithfully making it possible for us to continue the work and plan for a new facility. One supporter, the Borger church of Christ, increased their support for 2021. We appreciate this thoughtfulness and understanding of increases in operational expenses. Norma and I are encouraged by all of you.
The administration at Amarillo College hopes that our enrollment will return to pre-COVID levels. We lost about 7% during 2020. Enrollment is approximate 8,000 students. We have had a high of about 11,000.
Since we are discussing a new building: “Christ . . . in whom the whole structure, being joined together grows into a holy temple in the Lord. In Him you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by the Spirit.” (Ephesians 2:20-22)
“Every house is built by some man, but He that built all things is God.” (Heb. 3:4)