One of the efforts MoSt Church has recently added to her missions support is the Texas Gulf Coast Bible Institute (TGCBI) in Houston. Steve Austin, a former minister with the Impact Houston Church of Christ, is TGCBI’s director. In the following note, Steve describes TGCBI’s creation and vision.
Several years ago at Impact, we began to receive more and more requests for information about how to establish a new Hispanic work. Churches and people wanted to reach out to the growing Hispanic population in the area, and were looking for models to implement, and people to work in these new congregations. We realized that we had few answers to offer, and that the workers were scarce.
So over the next two years, a group of committed Christians began to explore the best way to address this need. Their answer was the Texas Gulf Coast Bible Institute. We believe that the vision God is giving us includes at least four facets:
1. Academic training–we want to provide full-time students with university-level courses in biblical text and ministry.
2. Practical training–we plan to help those students apply their academics practically by planting new congregations and nurturing them, so that they can plant others.
3. Long-distance training–we want to extend our reach from Houston to, eventually, the world, through video conferencing, online live courses, online archived courses, and streaming live audio and video on the internet.
4. Networking–we pray that we can help unify individuals and churches through this work, helping bring together resources in a complementary fashion, so that no one person or church has to do this work alone.
God has blessed us tremendously so far by providing a committed board, wonderful teachers and staff, colleagues in an increasing number of places other than Houston, exciting opportunities, and a growing financial support base.
We believe this is just a beginning. Pray for us every day.
Texas Gulf Coast Bible Institute
1502 Avenue I – South Houston, TX, 77587