Rev. Albert Strydhorst has joined the Calvin Theological Seminary (CTS) community as the Lee Huizenga Missionary in Residence for 2012-2013.
Strydhorst has served with Christian Reformed World Missions (CRWM) in Nigeria since 1993, soon after he graduated from CTS.
His roles included church planter among the Avadi people of northwestern Nigeria, country director for CRWM in Nigeria, and partnership coordinator between the CRC and national churches in West Africa.
One of the greatest changes he’s observed over the last 20 years or so, he says, has been the growth of the church in what were once called “Third World countries.”
“Look at where the church is growing and where missionaries are being sent from today in increasing numbers—often under severe financial challenge and sacrifice. It’s from countries like Nigeria and Brazil,” says Strydhorst.
This poses challenges.
“What is now our role as Western missions and missionaries? It’s a complex question, but at least part of the answer is to reimagine what it means to be the body of Christ in this new global context, to truly partner with others in God’s mission to the world,” says Strydhorst.
As missionary in residence at CTS, Strydhorst will be teaching, studying, writing, and encouraging the work of the CRC in missions.
Dean of the Faculty Lyle Bierma observes, “His most important role will be as a missions ‘presence’ on the campus—being available to and mixing with students and helping to generate interest in the work of global evangelization.”
Strydhorst is joined at CTS by his wife, Carolyn, and daughters Kristin and Andrea. Their oldest daughter, Jessica, is a student at Redeemer University College in Ontario.