"The servant overcomes them with the weapon of the spirit which is the Word of God." (Ephesians 6:17)
My Beloved Brethren in Service,
The peace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with you.
Our Lord Jesus Christ did not send His chosen disciples to teach His Holy Word immediately following His Crucifixion on the Holy Cross and His Resurrection. Rather He instructs the obedient disciples to wait. The Lord Jesus Christ reappeared to His disciples and personally taught them for forty consecutive days until His Ascension. More than the gift of speaking was the diligent seeking of instruction.
To assume the responsibility of service one must exhibit maturity as well as preparation. Our Lord Jesus Christ in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge (Colossians 2:3) did not start His formal service until He was thirty years of age, even though we are told He could effectively teach while at a young age.
Today, the need for advanced preparation of the servant is more pronounced than ever before. Many social movements including Atheism, Feminism, Liberalism, Materialism, and Social Construction are being taught and accepted in high school and college classrooms throughout the United States. In today's world it has become necessary for servants to seek a higher religious education to be accountable to those whom they serve.
The Southern Diocese has instituted an advanced curriculum for those seeking true discipleship. Christianity from its inception is based upon discipleship. The disciples were taught and thus prepared for service. We must follow this example.
I encourage those servants earnestly seeking the true meaning of discipleship to enroll in the Southern Diocese Theological College desiring increased spiritual growth and Biblical knowledge. The pivotal point of one's life of service is not only in seeking advanced knowledge but also in learning how to use one's spiritual knowledge gained from study. This is the beginning of wisdom.
"For wisdom is better than rubies, and all the things that may be desired are not to be compared to it." (Proverbs 8:11)
God bless you,
Bishop, Coptic Orthodox Diocese of Southern United States