2018 MAC Graduates reflect on their studies and futures
Studying at Mary Andrews College has a profound impact on so many of our students. Here, some of our recent graduates share their favourite memories of MAC, and how their studies have changed them.
Kathryn Brennan, Diploma of Theology (Pathway 1)
I loved the teachers at MAC, meeting and interacting with other students, stretching myself to write essays again and learning more about God and his Word.
So many things I do now relate to what I learned during my time at MAC: I work harder at listening; I try to take a better contextual view of biblical writings; I practise putting more gospel talk and personal stories into one-off interactions and longer-term relationships; and I think I better ‘get’ life’s shades of grey. Studying at MAC has made me realise there’s so much more refining of me to be done by the Spirit!
Rosalind Birt, Diploma of Theology/Diploma of Ministry (Pathway 1)
I chose to study at a theological college as I wanted to be better equipped to serve in my local church in voluntary roles, such as leading Bible studies, teaching kids and supporting and encouraging others in their Christian walk. I also wanted to learn more about the historical and theological basis for Christianity so that I could better understand and defend with confidence the hope and faith I have in Jesus, and share it with others who do not yet trust in him.
MAC was my choice of college because they offered a flexible timetable that was during school hours, which suited me as I had school-aged kids. I could also study one unit at a time, which was all I could manage with my other commitments, including paid work and family. They also offered classes reasonably close to my home at one of their regional centres.
Leanne Begg, Diploma of Ministry (Pathway 1)
My favourite unit was Pastoral Evangelism, as God has given me a love for sharing Jesus with others. The lecturer, Sarah Kinstead, kindly met up with me after class one day, as I was keen to discuss possible ministry roles or jobs that could use my gifts and passions in this area. It was through her ideas and suggestions that I took up a job teaching high school Scripture (SRE), which I’m not sure I would have been brave enough to try without her encouragement.
I currently teach Scripture in a public high school to students from Years 7–10, which is a challenging job, but I am so thankful God has given me the opportunity to do it. I delight in sharing with students that the Bible is such an incredible book that I enjoyed studying it at Bible college for over five years! I have shared photos with them from my study tours, especially ones from Israel, showing them that the events in the Bible happened in real places and centre around the real person of Jesus. I am also about to take up the role of Chaplain at this high school, and I know that the Pastoral Care units I studied will be invaluable as I seek to be ‘God’s love with skin on’.
Katrina Smith, Diploma of Ministry (Pathway 1)
My favourite unit at MAC was The Reformation. The reason for this is that I honestly had no idea who Martin Luther was, let alone what he accomplished. I’d grown up in a Catholic environment where the Reformation wasn’t spoken of, and it wasn’t taught in the public school that I went to.
I learned about Luther and his 95 Theses, his attack upon the Catholic Church’s corruption on indulgences and his teaching on the Five Solas. I was hooked. I even called our German Shepherd puppy Luther!
I started working for Anglicare as a Pastoral Carer at Newmarch House, Kingswood, just as I finished my studies at MAC. During my interview process, it was clear that MAC had equipped me with the skills and theological knowledge that was required for this position with Anglicare. I have a wonderful job and I am constantly reminded how blessed I am to be getting paid for serving Christ.
Heather Hutchinson, Diploma of Theology (Pathway 1)
I have been a Christian for over 35 years, but I hadn’t done any theological study since my uni days. I started studying again for my own personal and spiritual benefit. I also knew it would help me in any ministry I was doing at my local church. I had started teaching Scripture at schools the same year I started at MAC.
MAC has been invaluable for my knowledge in teaching Scripture. In 2015, I started as a part-time pastoral care worker in my home church, and the theology and pastoral care classes I took have helped me to feel more equipped for this role. It is obvious to me that God worked this all out for me, to prepare me, even though when I started studying I was just going to do one unit!
Jo Fitzpatrick, Certificate in Theology
A couple of the lecturers really made MAC special for me. They were an encouragement to me about what it looks like to serve and love the Lord Jesus into the future. Being in class with a number of older Christian women was also encouraging.
MAC has equipped me in ways that will be super-helpful in my line of work, ministry and evangelism. I have been challenged about how to pastorally speak God’s truth into someone’s life and how to think about the grey areas in life that can be tricky for a Christian to navigate.