The Board of Regents and key administration members from Southeast Asia Nazarene Bible College met 12-14 February to plan for the future of the college. After much prayer and discussion, the board unanimously voted to change the name of Southeast Asia Nazarene Bible College to Chapman International College, named after General Superintendent Emeritus J. B. Chapman. Chapman was known as a pioneer in the holiness movement and education.
The General Board approved this name change 23 February, and the college administration will begin working on a campaign to introduce the new name.
“Dr. J. B. Chapman had very strong interests in both education and missions,” said Floyd Cunningham, professor of church history at Asia-Pacific Nazarene Theological Seminary. “He was actively and eagerly engaged in travel to world areas, including China. He was also the one who pushed for the founding of Nazarene Theological Seminary in Kansas City.”
J. B. Chapman had a special connection to Myanmar and Southeast Asia. After their retirement, J. B.’s wife, Louise Chapman, met a young and passionate Myanmar pastor named Robin Seia. Seia went to study at Fuller Theological Seminary, and Louise helped lead him to the Church of the Nazarene. Seia returned to Myanmar and established a Church of the Nazarene in Myanmar and Southeast Asia Nazarene Bible College in Myanmar.
“[The Chapman name] will transmit our [Nazarene] heritage and, at the same time provide a link to Myanmar and Southeast Asia,” Cunningham said.
The multi-nation, multi-campus, and multi-level nature of the college will remain the same, as will the mission to provide quality lay and ministerial Christian education for Southeast Asia.
Because of this name change, CIC will be able to provide broader educational opportunities, such as allowing Myanmar to offer additional programs and to expand ministry opportunities in Creative Access Areas on the Southeast Asia Field.
CIC also hopes to register as a legal educational institution and provide educational opportunities in each of the five nations of Southeast Asia, including several CAAs. This registration could potentially allow volunteers and partners to apply for visas securely through the educational institution.
“The word ‘International’ conveys the college’s educational responsibility to more than one nation,” said Bill Kwon, SEANBC chancellor. “This name also communicates that the goal of the college is to educate international leaders for Southeast Asia and beyond. A multi-lingual policy — English and the area’s national language — will be one of the core educational policies of the college.”