I would like to give you a deep and personal welcome to Belfast Bible College.
As you consider what steps to take with regard to your education and what might best equip you, know that we will take seriously our role in your learning. We are seeking to foster learning that develops your understanding, your skills and your character, and we are seeking to develop a community where you are known and to which you can contribute.
We will take your time here seriously because we take our role seriously in equipping 21st century disciples - we would love to be part of your story.
Our goal is to equip 21st century disciples through theological education that is orientated towards a lived-out faith that impacts the world.
Spiritual formation alongside informed theological thinking and reflection is pivotal for a confident faith in an increasingly secular society. Such education fosters an ‘other-orientated’ life that engages with our neighbours wherever God places us. We want our students to gain an appreciation for culture and context as well as a mission heart so they can embody the Gospel in all areas of life and facilitate others to do the same. A deep knowledge of Scripture is foundational towards such integrated discipleship.
As Christ’s disciples we never finish learning. We are called to a faith continually honed by engagement in our unique context and by robust theological thinking that interacts with that context. We recognise that character is as important as knowledge. We want to see the Spirit empower disciples to be people of influence. As leaders and followers, prophets and pioneers, innovators and risk-takers, all are called to be servants as part of Christ’s Church in the world.
The college was founded as the Belfast Bible School and Missionary Training Home in 1943 by Robert and Rosalind McKnight. They themselves were unable to go overseas to work, but felt called and compelled to train others to be involved in world mission.
The college moved to its present site, Glenburn House in Dunmurry in 1983, with 35 full–time students. This was a major step of faith for the staff and board members at that time, but their faith was honoured as donations came in from Churches and individuals across Northern Ireland to cover the cost of purchasing and modernising the building.
Belfast Bible College has always tried to make theological training accessible and the Women’s Study Fellowship course began in 1975, and continues today, with over 100 women currently taking the course. Then in 1985 Evening classes began, and thousands of individuals have benefitted from the ministry and teaching there.
The college has continued to expand and the campus has grown over the years, with new buildings being added as student numbers have increased. The college community has grown significantly in recent years and now has over 150 full–time students, as well as several hundred involved in part–time study.
International students have attended the college from many different countries are a significant part of the college community, and usually make about 20% of our student body. This diversity is a crucial and unique dimension of the Belfast Bible College educational experience, particularly for local students as we seek to create and international perspective in a local context. We give thanks to God for His faithfulness since the college began, and we look to Him for the future.
The College has a dedicated Board of Directors who meet regularly to provide oversight and direction. We are thankful to have such an experienced group to invest in our strategic leadership.
Current Board Membership:
Dr. Maureen Bennett
Dr. Moyna Bill
Prof. Norman Black
Prof. Ken Brown
Mrs Jean Garland
Ms Sara Graham
Mr Paul Hendron
Dr. Norman Morrow (Chair)
Mr Martin Pitt
Mr Stephen Shaw QC
Mrs Jenny Smyth
Mr David Wheeler