Dr. Neville Callam of Baptist World Alliance visits Campbellsville University

Dr. Neville Callam of Baptist World Alliance visits Campbellsville University

April 17, 2015
For Immediate Release

Dr. Neville George Callam, general secretary and chief executive officer of the Baptist World Alliance, receiving Campbellsville University's Servant Leadership Award. (Campbellsville University Photo by Rachel DeCoursey)

By Jordan Snider and Josh Christian, student news writers

CAMPBELLSVILLE, Ky. – Dr. Neville George Callam, general secretary and chief executive officer of the Baptist World Alliance, lectured at the Baptist Heritage Series on March 24, 2015 at Campbellsville University.
Callam’s lecture focused primarily on the past, present and future of the Baptist World Alliance.

The Baptist World Alliance met for the first time in 1905 in London. At the first meeting 28 countries were represented. Since the first meeting, BWA has created BWAid, an organization that supports development projects and coordinates disaster emergency response around the globe. The BWA was the only Christian alliance where North America represents more than half of the people involved but then declined because of disunity.

 Dr. Neville George Callam (Campbellsville
 University Photo by Rachel DeCoursey)
In 2001 Callam was asked how he felt about being the first “non-white” serving as general secretary, and he responded by saying, “I am not non-white, I am black.” Callam said he believes overtime this anomaly will be corrected, and “We belong together and because of that anyone can lead.’

Callam explained about what is happening with the BWA. There are four commitments that the BWA has, he said: Unity, Mission and Evangelism, Relief and Sustainable Community, and lastly Freedom and Justice.

When he began to speak about the future of the BWA, Callam said, “Baptists will be challenged as we strive to overcome disunity, address the concerns of the youth and see the beauty of walking in God’s will.”

Dr. John Chowning thanked Callam for coming to Kentucky by saying, “Dr. Callam’s warm and gracious spirit is infectious. If everyone had his spirit there would be no problems in the world.”
Callam also spoke at Campbellsville University’s Ransdell Chapel where he was presented the Campbellsville University Leadership Award. This award is given for servant leadership and exhibiting characteristics the university values.

At chapel, Callam’s focus was directed toward seeing people.

“Sawa Bona,” a Zooloo greeting translated into “I see you” in the English language, was said to be the manner Zooloo’s would greet each other.

The Zooloo’s response would be, “Sikhona,” or “I am here.”

Callam used this greeting to sum up the importance of seeing people the way Christ sees them.

“If we are to love our neighbors, we must first see our neighbors,” Callam said.

Callam used the Biblical narrative of a chief-tax collector, Zacchaeus, to challenge us to see others the way Jesus saw them.

“Jesus saw others for who they were and who they would become,” Callam said.

During the service, Dr. Neville Geroge Callam was presented a Servant Leadership Award. From left: Dr. John Chowning, vice president for church and external relations and executive assistant to the president, Dr. Joe Owns, chairman of the Board of Trustees, Callam, and Dr. John Hurtgen, dean of the School of Theology. (Campbellsville University Photo by Rachel DeCoursey)

Campbellsville University is a widely acclaimed Kentucky-based Christian university with more than 3,500 students offering 63 undergraduate options, 17 master’s degrees, five postgraduate areas and eight pre-professional programs. The website for complete information is campbellsville.edu.

Download Printable Document