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AlumNews: Talon Articles

Vocational ministry class offered at workshop

Friday, October 26, 2007  
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By Kristin Cumbie

Those attending the World Mission Workshop have the opportunity to hear about experiences from Japan and available opportunities to serve there.

The presentation of vocational ministry will be led by Mito Church of Christ minister, Yuki Obata, as well as Chris Rosser, who also worked in the area.

The idea for the class came from Professor of Missions, Robert Carpenter, who visited his daughter and son-in-law while they were working in Mito, Japan.

Mito is about 60 miles northeast of Tokyo.

After his visit, he realized the magnitude of vocational ministry in Mito. 

“We pitched the idea, [Rosser] bought it and agreed to coordinate it,” Carpenter said.

Rosser was introduced to this area of Japan while studying abroad on the Pacific Rim program sponsored by Oklahoma Christian University. He returned in 2000 as an AET (Assistant English Teacher).

Rosser continued in this field until 2003, when he began working full-time with the Mito Church of Christ. Rosser worked with the Mito Church until 2006.

He was the third AET to stay and work with the church, and he has been back in the states for about a year now.

Director of International Programs John Osborne will accompany Rosser and Obata in the class in order to share experiences and history of Mito, Japan.

“This class will be a presentation of the six years that I spent working in Mito,” Rosser said.
The class will showcase the town of Mito and discuss the past, present and future. Rosser will also cover seven spiritual principles of vocational ministry.

The principles come from his personal experiences, and he feels they will be beneficial.

The principles will not be specific to Japan but are beneficial to anyone in this ministry.

The town of Mito has an interesting history.  It was the first town to host a Let’s Start Talking program.

The church has a very strong and growing relationship with the Oklahoma Christian Board of Trustees.

“Mito is very unique in the world to have such an influx and out flux of vocational ministry,” Rosser said.

The class will provide perspectives from Obata, who is a permanent resident and minister in the town; Rosser, who has worked in the church and surrounding towns and Osborne, who is partially responsible for coordinating AETs to work with Mito.  They hope to have alumni and former AETs in the audience.

The speakers will have a designated discussion time during which Rosser hopes to hear from former alumni and others who have worked with Mito. He wants to allow people to hear many different perspectives.

This class will also serve as an educational opportunity for students who are interested in attending an international studies program.

“This will provide practical insight of how you can be involved and effective,” Rosser said.

Since Mito is one of the main destinations for students on the Pacific Rim program, this class will give interested students a better understanding of the work being done in the area.

“I have every confidence it will be a great class,” Carpenter said.

The class will be offered on Saturday from 3 to 3:45 p.m.

Obata will also be featured as the key note speaker on Friday evening.

The address is offered during the worship period, beginning at 7 p.m. 

Students and faculty are encouraged to attend any of the classes available during the World Mission Workshop.

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