Birmingham Christian College
BCC is a training college for Christian Ministry and Mission where men and women are modelled to become faithful disciples of Jesus Christ in the church, society and the marketplace. Situated on the Selly Oak Campus of Birmingham University, BCC has former students serving all over the world. With roots in the Evangelical and Pentecostal/Charismatic movements, it welcomes students from all church, ethnic, social and economic backgrounds. BCC has a missional attitude to all aspects of Christian service and is investing a great deal of resources to train non-Western missionaries in Europe to partner with local churches to reach out to both the indigenous and various Diasporan communities.
A Brief History of BCC
Birmingham Christian College was founded as the Birmingham Bible Institute, by Presbyterian minister Henry Brash Bonsall, at premises in Pakenham Road, Edgbaston in 1953 where staff and students from different Bible believing backgrounds lived together as part of an extended Christian family. Brash Bonsall led an inspiring life, which you can read about in ‘Running for Revival’, a biography by Ruth N.B. McGavin.
A Change of Premises and a Change of Name
The College moved into the Selly Oak area of Birmingham in 2000. It re-branded itself as Birmingham Christian College and became a formal member of the Selly Oak Federation, poised to engage with a changing world and changing missions context in Europe. In 2006, it moved to the Crowther Hall campus, a purpose built missionary training centre previously used by the Church Mission Society (CMS) until 2004.
Enrolment for undergraduate and postgraduate degree courses validated by the University of Wales ceased in 2010 due to the University of Wales no longer offering validation services. However, the establishment of a strong missional partnership with The Church of Pentecost in 2012 allows BCC to revamp, upgrade and modernise its buildings and facilities to recreate the Christian environment that it has been noted for over many years. BCC is seeking new validation and hopes to offer accredited undergraduate and postgraduate courses again in the near future.
BCC was and remains an independent, interdenominational evangelical training college that aims to help students from all backgrounds respond effectively to the call of God in a Christian environment that students since the beginning in 1953 have noted as one of the main benefits of College life. It also offers ministerial training for pastors and lay leaders of The Church of Pentecost across the whole of Europe.
Our vision is:
To create a multi-ethnic, inter-cultural and inter-denominational Christian environment where men and women of all hues are challenged intellectually and inspired spiritually to learn, worship and serve together to impact their generations with the power of the love of Jesus Christ.
BCC is Christ centred, bible based, spirit led and mission focused.
We provide individually tailored programmes of Christian training and education that help our students to learn to trust and obey Jesus Christ so that His will is done more fully in thought, word and deed.
We help our students to use the bible in all matters relating to Christian faith and conduct, as it is a more reliable guide in such matters than either human reason or human traditions alone.
We help our students to understand the person and the work of the Holy Spirit in empowering and leading the believer to fulfil the mission of God on earth in anticipation of the coming of our Lord.
We encourage Christians, our students in particular, to work practically, in culturally sensitive and contemporary ways towards achieving the goal of “a church for every people and the gospel for every person”.
Birmingham Christian College exists:
“To promote the understanding and practice of the evangelical Christian Faith.”
The College is a long-standing corporate member of the UK Evangelical Alliance. In addition each Trustee and each member of staff is expected to sign a form each year to confirm that they accept the contents of our statement of faith.
Since BCC’s establishment in 1953, some distinctive emphases have emerged that have a proven and lasting value in the eyes of the Trustees, the staff and past students:
- Our use of the bible as the primary guide in all matters relating to Christian faith and conduct;
- Our commitment to the primacy of faith, prayer, intercession and obedience in the Christian life – particularly in the provision of the resources that are needed for doing God’s will;
- Our strong sense of the perpetual need to demonstrate the gospel through practical servanthood empowered by agape love;
- Our stress on the importance of spiritual renewal and revival in both the individual and in society;
- Our practice of designing appropriate programmes of study and practical work for students, drawn from a wide ability range, to help them to experience both spiritual growth and educational advancement;
- Our desire to see spiritual gifts used effectually in the life of the College under the Lordship of Christ;
- Our priority of spreading the gospel to every human across every part of the planet by whatever means that are appropriate to the local context;
- Our ongoing call to help and strengthen both the members and the leaders of churches across the West Midlands conurbation in appropriate ways;
We pray that these values will always be a practical expression of what is important to us as a Christian college community aiming to honour Jesus Christ fully in all we do.