William Brown ’11 M.Div.
B.A. University of Virginia 2007

Baptist (Cooperative Baptist Fellowship)

It’s hard to believe that three years in New Haven have passed!  When my wife, Erin, and I first arrived here, we did not know what to expect.  But Yale Divinity School proved to be a welcoming and enlightening place that has had a profound impact on my faith and ministerial preparation.

BrownAfter taking time this coming summer to visit family and friends, Erin and I will be headed to Nazareth through the Venturer Program of the Virginia Baptist Mission Board.  While in Israel, I will have the opportunity to use the knowledge and skills I have acquired at YDS as I teach introductory Hebrew Bible and New Testament courses at Nazareth Evangelical Theological Seminary.  This seminary provides instruction for local Arab Christians, as well as students from other regions, particularly Sudan.

As I prepare to teach in this setting, I am extremely grateful for the training I have received at Yale Divinity School.  My classes have been academically rigorous, while simultaneously incorporating questions of practical application and ethical considerations.  Perhaps the greatest asset, however, has been thoughtful conversation with a culturally and theologically diverse group of classmates.  As I now prepare myself for biblical studies in another cultural context, my experience at Yale with a variety of hermeneutical approaches and interpretive techniques has enabled me to approach this challenge with greater confidence and ability.

Upon returning from Israel, Erin and I plan to return to Virginia, but our plans beyond that are not yet settled.  Whatever the future holds, however, I know that these three years in New Haven leave me better prepared for what may come.

Through daily worship in Marquand Chapel, I encountered an array of worship styles and traditions, deepening my own faith as I gained a better understanding of the rich diversity of Christian practice.  During my internship in a local congregation, I discovered the challenge of putting Christian ideals into practice, as well as the great rewards and opportunities that ministry presents.  And through friendships with faculty, staff, and fellow students, I have been inspired by the example of their lives of faithful Christian service.  Yale Divinity School has given me the opportunity to think critically about myself and my beliefs, to explore new possibilities, and to grow in my faith and understanding.

Posted: 07/05/2011