[excerpts from our letter]
Dear friends and family:
At the very end of August, my wife, Mel, and son, Zachary, and I will be moving to Edinburgh, UK (Scotland) so that I can complete a PhD in New
Testament. Many of you may know that I was in a PhD program at Midwestern in Kansas City. After completing the coursework phase of the program, we decided to consider the possibility of pursuing a PhD overseas one last time (we’d briefly considered it a couple other times in the past). Doors really seemed to open up this time around. As we prayed, considered the options, and later learned of Josh’s acceptance into the program, we became certain that it was a wise move and the right time.
One of the most common questions we get is, “Why Scotland?” The choice of the University of Edinburgh has a number of positives. Here are a few: (1) My supervisor, Paul Foster, is a respected expert in Gospels studies (I’ll be writing on Luke), and we share a similar faith commitment; (2) The PhD program at Edinburgh is well regarded by institutions where I might work in the future, and the school is ranked among the best in the world in my field; (3) UK PhD programs are typically shorter than in the US, so we’re hoping to be finished in 2–3 years; (4) Living and studying in another country will provide us with a unique learning experience.
Of course, there are a few challenges as well, but we’re trusting God to provide what we need to overcome them. We will be putting our house up for sale very soon and sorting through our possessions to sell or store. (Need a comfy country home N. of Kansas City on 5 acres? 😉 ) We’ve already received a scholarship to cover a portion of tuition, and we are waiting to hear back about a couple more. We appreciate your prayers as we set sail on this new adventure! We enjoyed hearing from many of you at Christmas and trust our letter finds you doing well. We look forward to connecting with many of you before we leave in August.