Authorities of the Liberia Baptist Theological Seminary (LBTS) on Sunday, March 5, inducted Dr. Terry Leonard Henry as the seventh president of the seminary, replacing Dr. Rick Wilson.
The ceremony, held at the seminary along the ELWA/Monrovia Highway in Paynesville, brought together several clergies mainly from the Baptist denomination.
Dr. Olu Q. Menjay, Liberia Baptist Missionary and Education Convention President, the chairman of the Board of Trustees, Deacon Aaron Marshall, and Sister Ophelia Hoff, member of the Board, served as installing officers.
The ceremony was conducted under the theme, “A charge to keep.”
Delivering his convocation message on the theme “What comes after therefore,” based on Romans 12:1-2, Dr. Menjay said to the newly installed president: “You have been called to serve by keeping the charge of the seminary. I urge you not to allow the job to separate you from the service of Christ, because by your appointment, you’ve conquered the many trials and tribulations the LBTS has encountered over the years.”
He recalled how the LBTS has been transitioning, adding that the coming of Dr. Henry should be the one to better conditions at the seminary with God’s guidance.
In response, Dr. Henry expressed gratitude to the congregation and all those who have prayed with him to take the LBTS to the next level from where his predecessors left it.
He remembered how Jesus Christ epitomized servant-leadership in the Upper Room when He washed his disciples’ feet.
Dr. Henry promised to humble himself to the task the Baptists have assigned him. He quoted Matthew 27:27 in which Jesus told his disciples, “Whoever among you wishes to be chief, let him be your servant….”
He said from the verse, he will adopt servant-leadership as a way of life, adding, “It has also become my style of leadership, and by no means do I mean I am a pushover nor can I be easily influenced or manipulated, it is my leadership style.”
“So, today I am in Liberia not to lord over you or serve as a ruler; instead, I come as your servant, because I am here to serve you and this fine institution in whatever capacity the Lord would have me serve.”
Dr. Henry added: “I want you to understand I am willing to do whatever it takes to get the job done. I also want you to understand we are a team in which there no “I” in the team, and that I am not the only player on the field. We can’t win with that strategy.”
Dr. Henry called on the Baptists to remain together and collectively agree to restore and rebuild the legacy the LBTS’ name in West Africa, noting, “I ask that you don’t bring a problem to me without also bringing possible solutions.”
Prior to taking his new assignment, Dr. Henry, an American, served the Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church in Wilmington, North Carolina (NC), USA, for 29 years. He served as the 4th vice president of the General Baptist State Convention’s Congress of Christian Education, and also served as the site coordinator and instructor for interdenominational Theological Center Certificate Program in Theology in Atlanta, GA. He began his education at NC State University and earned his Bachelor of Arts in Religion (International Seminary), his Masters of Arts in Christian Education, Campbell University, and was awarded an Honorary Doctorate from the Liberia Baptist Theological School in Liberia.
Dr. Henry is the former moderator of the Middle District Baptist Association in Burgaw, NC, where he led 61 churches into the revamping of their Christian Education Department, and led the association to acquire their new site.