President Emeritus & Professor Emeritus of Bible
Biblical & Theological Studies
Gerald was born in Mexico at a time when his parents were missionaries among Mexican natives. His parents returned to Canada when he was still young and settled in Altona, Manitoba, where he completed all his elementary and secondary studies. Studies at CMBC were direction setting—he had expected to pursue mathematics or the natural sciences, but during his time at CMBC he became drawn to Bible and theology.
Gerald has worked CMBC/CMU for most of his working life, serving as Admissions Counsellor, Interim Business Manager, Academic Dean (1982-97) and President (1997-2003 at CMBC; 2003-12 at CMU). He served one year as Interim President at the Associated Mennonite Biblical Seminary. Gerald was CMU's first sole President, served in that role until retirement in 2012.
Gerald has a Bachelor of Christian Education, CMBC (1967); a BA from Bethel College, North Newton, KS (1968); did studies at Earlham School of Religion, Richmond, IN (1968-69); obtained a Master of Divinity, Mennonite Biblical Seminary, Elkhart, IN (1973); and obtained a Doctor of Philosophy (Bible), Union Theological Seminary, Richmond, VA (1980). He has seved as Fellow at Tyndale House, Cambridge, England (1986); as Fellow at Institute for Ecumenical and Cultural Research, Collegeville, MN (1987, 1994-95); and as Visiting Scholar, Acadia Divinity College, Wolfville, NS (2002-03).
Gerald and his wife Esther have three children—Nathan (married to Angela Pauls), Brad (married to Natalie Enns) and Virginia, and 3 grandchildren. They have been active at Bethel since their marriage in 1971. Gerald and Esther enjoy travelling together, and he enjoys following as many athletic teams as possible.
He continues to teach part-time in Bible.
Areas of Teaching
Ph.D., (Union Theological Seminary), M.Div., (Mennonite Biblical Seminary), B.A., (Bethel College), BChrEd (Canadian Mennonite Bible College)
Work in Detail
- Clues for Gracious Living (Deuteronomy). Youth Bible Study Curriculum, Students' Manual and Teacher's Guide. Newton, Kansas: Faith and Life Press, 1983.
- Better Than Rivers of Oil (Micah). Newton: Faith and Life Press, 1985.
- Kingship According to Deuteronomistic History. Society of Biblical Literature Dissertation Series #87. Atlanta: Scholars Press, 1986.
- "Canadian Mennonite Bible College: An Example of a Bible College." Pp 74-86 in Educating for the Kingdom? Church-Related Colleges in English-Speaking Canada. The Proceedings of a Conference sponsored by University of St. Jerome's College and Conrad Grebel College in Waterloo, Ontario May 1-2, 1990.
- "The 21st Century Calling for a Faithful Community – Strategies," pp. 230-253, in What Mennonites are Thinking, 1999. Edited by Merle Good and Phyllis Pellman Good, Intercourse, Pa.: Good Books, 1999.
- "Spirituality" in Vision 1:1(2000), 9-11.
- "Scholars as Servants of the Church." In Direction 14:2 (2004) 133-42.
Recent Presentations include:
- "Dusting Off the Bible" (2 papers) at Mennonite Church Canada Assembly in Vancouver, July 13 & 14, 2012
- "Academic Freedom and the Faith-Based University" at conference on Limits of Academic Freedom, sponsored by Canadian Association of University Teachers in Toronto on February 2, 2013
- "Where the Church Thinks: The Role of the Christian Scholar," the annual Sawatsky Lecture at Conrad Grebel University College in Waterloo, February 8, 2013.
Selected Volunteer Involvements
- Board Member and Chairperson, Elim Bible Institute, 1982-86
- Task Force on Seminary Education for the Conference of Mennonites in Canada, 1987-88
- Board Chairperson, Toronto Mennonite theological Institute, 1990-98
- Board Chairperson, Westgate Mennonite Collegiate, 1991-94
- Member of General Conference Review Team for Bethel College and Bluffton College, 1994-95
- Mennonite Church Canada Task Force on its future, 2013-