Teaching at the Nepal Presbyterian Theological Seminary

December 13, 2019Tim in 1977

About three weeks ago, I returned from my fourth mission to Nepal, and my third time teaching at the Nepal Presbyterian Theological Seminary in the southern part of Kathmandu. I promptly caught a bad cold which sidelined me for quite a few days, and that is partially why this mission report is later than usual.

I believe it was a very successful trip, thanks and praise be to God the Father, the Lord Jesus Christ, and the working of the Holy Spirit both in me and in the students. My sincere gratitude to all of you who invested yourselves in this mission with your prayers and offerings, and to my friend Alois Eggmann who accompanied me on this trip and made his own unique contribution.

As usual, just getting to Nepal was a big challenge and although Alois and I planned to meet in Istanbul, Turkey, my flight out of New Orleans was delayed for about 8 hours and I was rerouted through Dubai. As a result, we greeted each other in Kathmandu. Special thanks to Sangam Magarati for escorting me from the airport to the college.

Thanks to the completion of a new building, it was possible for us to be housed on the campus during our stay. This made things much easier. In previous visits I enjoyed the comforts and hospitality of the Orchid Guest House in Lalitpur, but the daily transport was wearisome, and I got little time with the students outside of the classroom. This time Alois and I had plenty of opportunity for fellowshipping with the students, going for walks, and playing countless matches of ping-pong. We were served breakfast and dinner in the kitchen next to my guest room, and we ate lunch with the students. Alois and I both enjoyed the meals very, very much.

My teaching schedule was far more extensive than anything I'd previously tried, amounting to about 80 hours of teaching over the two weeks I was there. To the first year students, I taught "If Ye Do These Things, Ye Shall Never Fall" and "The Passion Week of Christ." The second year students heard my teaching on the Epistle of Romans, and the third-year students had my classes on the books of Joshua, Philippians, and Ruth. In the evenings, all the students joined together for my presentation on Acts. This chart gives you an idea of the schedule:

All of my classes were presented using the PowerPoint slide shows I've been working on since 2015. By using an audio soundtrack for the Bible reading, we were able to cover an immense amount of Scripture. No one emerged from these courses an expert on these books, but everyone came out with a good foundation for future study.

As I was teaching in one classroom, Alois was most often teaching in another one. The difference was that I'd come to Nepal knowing what was expected of me. My only counsel to Alois had been to "bring as many of your sermons as you can." He rose to the occasion, and the Word of God poured from his soul. Alois is a dedicated servant of the Lord, and his profession of faith is in words AND deeds.

The students and faculty received us very warmly, and gave us kind and encouraging feedback. I know I can speak for Alois that we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. It is a great privilege to be used by God to teach people who want to learn.

The following letter comes from the man who oversees the work at the seminary, a man whom I am honored to call my friend:

Tim in 1977

Dear Timothy Sullivan
Greetings in Jesus' name.
Hope you're having good times with family and the Church.
It is my pleasure to say thank you for visiting our Seminary and doing so much hard work in teaching the Seminary students. We are blessed to have you in our midst and eagerly anticipating your next class again in March 2020 and November 2020.
NPTS hearty thanks those beautiful souls who had invested a lot of prayer and financial support for your ministry in Nepal.
Our students had an amazing time to learn, interact and meditate upon the classes.
I am sure all of them have been greatly impacted.
Once again A BIG THANK YOU.
With so much Prayers
Rev. Dr. Prakash Tamang Lama

As you see, I have been invited to return to NPTS in March and November 2020 for more teaching. My classes will be part of the official curriculum of the seminary, and this means I must also prepare homework and examinations for the students. So in the upcoming months, I will be hard at work preparing classes on the Psalms, and the books of Timothy and Titus. As you can imagine, the actual presentation is only the tip of the iceberg. But I thank God who has granted me the time needed to prepare my teachings. I am also appreciative of the supporters of WTWH who understand that when I am not on mission, I am busy preparing for the next one.

We all receive requests for prayer from time to time, but too often those requests slip through the cracks in our minds. I have a prayer request for the work at NPTS, and I ask that you join me in this prayer NOW, even as you read it.

Almighty God, our heavenly Father,

You have heard the threats, and you know of the violence carried out against your children throughout Nepal. But just as in the days of old, you are raising up righteous servants who ask only for the boldness to speak your word, with signs and wonders being done in the name of thy holy child Jesus. May the good news of your gospel illuminate this nation, bringing your light to places it has never shined before.

We approach your throne of grace in supplication for the workers and students at the Nepal Presbyterian Theological Seminary in Kathmandu. We ask for special favors and wisdom to be granted the overseer of this work, our beloved brother Prakash Tamang Lama. You have burdened him with the desire to see both this school and the churches throughout Nepal able to carry on their work without dependence on foreign aid. I pray LORD that you will inspire him with sound and viable ideas for profitable ventures, and that you will inspire others to contribute the capital needed to begin these ventures.

We ask that you bless the Christians of South Korea who have carried the bulk of the financial burden of NPTS for so many years. Open their eyes to the good that they have done, that they do not grow weary in their well doing. May they realize the rewards they are laying up in store to lay at your feet on that great day.

We pray for every student at NPTS, past, present, and future. Use this occasion of their separation from worldly society to establish them in eternal truth, and to equip them to carry the truth that sets men free to their countrymen near and far, those who are presently saved and those who are destined to be saved. Fulfill in each student the vision that led to their enrollment. We pray for each church and family that has sponsors these students, and ask that you to show them the value of their support.

LORD God, you alone know how much time remains both in our mortal lives and before the trumpet signals the end of this age. "Teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom" (Psalms 90:12), "redeeming the time, because the days are evil" (Ephesians 5:16). May your hand be firmly upon the work at the workers and students at NPTS, that nothing is left undone.

In the holy name of Jesus we make this request. Amen.

Thank you for praying with me.

I am pleased to share some a few of the testimonies written by some of the students at NPTS, from the FIRST-YEAR, SECOND-YEAR, and THIRD-YEAR students.

I also hope you will enjoy these PHOTOS.

In the service of His Majesty, the King of kings,
Tim Sullivan