College combines medicine and theology in Kenya

By June 14, 2010

Kenya (MNN) — If Jesus is both the Great Physician and our High Priest, perhaps medicine and theology were not meant to be separated. At least, that's the belief at Scott Theological College.

Africa Inland Mission's Scott Theological College in Kenya is working on the marriage between medicine and theology in the form of a transformed medical program.

A Kenyan medical program has been running for over 40 years, but only on the diploma level. It has not been accredited and has not included theological studies in the past. Desiring both, the program approached Scott Theological College to seek refuge under their accreditation and exceptional knowledge in theology.

Recognizing the need for a theologically-based medical program in Kenya, Scott gladly obliged and will begin work on the curriculum in August.

Gregg Okesson, a lecturer for the College and a soon-to-be developer of the new curriculum, says this sort of program is exactly what Kenya–and Africa in general–needs.

"In Africa, there's a long history of medical people being seen as people that are concerned about the whole person, the spiritual aspect as well," explains Okesson. "So we really feel like this is a great opportunity for us to help integrate theology into a medical curriculum."

Although the College has never had a medical program before, this incredibly holistic approach to medicine falls in line with the College's angle on living out the Gospel in word and in deed. Okesson hopes that this new medical program will be an example of God's Word lived out.

"This program could be one means among many where we're really preparing men and women who go with medicine into areas where the Gospel can not only be taught, but it can be lived."

Although the curriculum has not yet been created, Okesson says that it will entail far more than just requiring medical students to take a few Bible courses. Instead, the program is intended to meet medical students every step of the way with theology, making it the very basis of all they do.

The program will not be on the main campus but will be in Kijabe, where a notable hospital has been running for years. The medical program will of course be a considerable expansion of the work that Scott Theological College is already doing.

"Our greatest desire would just be that this would supplement what Scott Theological College is already doing, and to strengthen the Kingdom of God in Africa," says Okesson.

Pray that as curriculum begins to take form in August, God would give wisdom and guidance to those involved. Pray that as a result of this new program, many in Kenya and Africa would see the spiritual and physical come together and come to the Lord as they heal.

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