From Ky’s desk overlooking our small English garden (or ‘yard’ in American English):
Oxford is an internationally recognized university city. In the autumn, the new academic year begins and students flock back (increasing the town's population by over 20,000!), matriculation gowns grace the more casual scholarly attire (jeans and sweatshirts), and bicycles spill across the pavement from nearly every pub in town. The pace definitely quickens and the face of the town looks younger and more eager.
Although we at Oxford Centre for Mission Studies (OCMS) are not tied to the traditional academic semesters, we do hold an autumn Research Induction School (RIS) to welcome new scholars. And, despite our tendency to draw more mature students, our new arrivals quicken the pace and change the face here, too! This fall's RIS includes scholars from India, Egypt, Indonesia, Korea, Nigeria, Japan, Singapore, Chile, and America; some of their areas of research include “textual studies in the New Testament”, “cultural identity formation of immigrants who were traumatized in their home countries”, “Nigerian churches in Birmingham, England” and “the use of Western finances in development work in Cambodia”.
Bill is very involved with the RIS sessions introducing the new scholars to qualitative and practitioner research methods. He continues supervision of several PhD candidates engaged in action research and was recently appointed as the Admissions Tutor at OCMS. Over the last few months, he edited and submitted his doctoral thesis for publication – Church, Child, and Theology in Romania – and wrote two chapters for new books. In his "spare time", he has signed us up to adopt and mentor a few Oxford University undergraduates through the ministry of St Aldates Church.
During the month of September Bill helped facilitate a theological forum at The 4-14 Global Summit for Children in Singapore. He then traveled into Cambodia to provide research supervision for two OCMS students and spent two weeks leading seminars in Moldova and Romania. November holds an invitation to present a plenary paper at a conference in Nairobi, Kenya concerning African children in crisis. His travels originating out of Oxford have been more global than I would have ever imagined… So, whatever your images of Oxford and scholarly endeavor might be, I hope this broadens them to include taking Gospel truth into the whole world!
I stay closer to home as far as travels go, but the world still finds me out. The OCMS Women's Gathering I organized a year ago continues to meet weekly. It has joined women together from Taiwan, Hong Kong, Korea, Ghana, Ethiopia, Pakistan, Netherlands, Niger, Zimbabwe, Romania, UK and America. The English spoken amongst us is musical and the prayers are far reaching; I am blessed to be among these women!
For those of you that remember our MK, Daniel, he is now 23 years old, graduated from Southeastern University and is working full-time as a Production Assistant for Warner Brothers Entertainment. His apartment (shared with four other Hollywood hopefuls) looks across West Los Angeles at the famous Hollywood sign and he crosses the star-studded Hollywood Blvd each day on his commute to work. With 60 hour work weeks, his life is mostly work, sleep and laundry, but we couldn't be prouder of him. He is launched into the world of film and movies!
We do hope that you are finding your work, life and family to be blessed of God. We pray for you; we are grateful for you; we remember you with love.
Bill and Ky Prevette