.April 2001
Introducing the William Gale Study Center for World Missions
by Michael Avery

“Because the harvest hasn’t ended!” This familiar motto emphasizes our historic commitment to creative and effective Christian ministry. Now GBS is about to launch another exciting adventure—our new campus center for global evangelism. Housing our Division of Intercultural Studies and World Missions, this will honor the life and legacy of missionary statesman Dr. William D. Gale by preparing reapers for the harvest.

Born in a sod house on a Nebraska ranch in 1920, William Duane Gale has committed his long and colorful life to the cause of reclaiming lost humanity. His passion for the lost has led to a life of service which has included 21 years of pastoring; 21 years in administrative/faculty work in Bible-training institutions; and 22 years of general-level denominational leadership, 14 of which were spent as General Secretary of Foreign Missions. He worked with Brainerd Indian School for 15 years, nine of which he served as president. He was co-founder of the Northwest Indian Bible School, as well as the the founder of the Latin American Bible Institute. He was also responsible for rebuilding the campus of the Philippine Bible Methodist College and extending the work of the Bible Methodists in the Philippines.
In sixty years of active ministry, Dr. Gale has given almost 40 of them to some form of missionary activity. He has served the work of missions in the following organizations: The Wesleyan Church, the Allegheny Wesleyan Methodist Connection, the Bible Methodist Connection, Northwest Indian Bible School, Society of Indian Missions, All Tribes Indian School, Florida Evangelistic Association, and Friends of Missions. During his work among our Native Americans, he earned the endearing title of “Chief Hugs Himself,” but the church at large refers to him as “Mr. Missions.” His wife Alice has been his faithful partner in ministry.

Dr. Gale has served two terms as a member of the Board of Trustees of God’s Bible School and College and has had a continuing interest in the school. He has chosen to place his library and to perpetuate his legacy on our campus, because at the very heart of GBS is a passionate commitment to global missions. This is why we cherish the words, “missionary training home,” which remain a part of our historic name.
This passion has been so forceful through the years that few institutions can boast of a more glorious history of missionary zeal through its graduates than God’s Bible School and College. Our “missionary hall of fame” includes such names as Charles and Lettie Cowman and the E.A. Kilbournes, missionaries to the Orient and co-founders of OMS, International; Lula Schmelzenbach, Swaziland; Lillian Trasher, Egypt; John Simpson, Philippines; Claudia Peyton, Africa; and Wesley Duewel, India.
Other more recent alumni who have also given valiant missionary service include Glenn Pelfrey, Papua New Guinea and Ukraine; Glenn and Helen Reiff, Guatemala and Honduras; Leonard and Janet Sankey, Honduras; Bob and Barbara Brock, Papua New Guinea; Melvin Adams, Ukraine; Andrea Whiteman, Rumania; and Tom and Sharon McKnight, Honduras. Our missions legacy has been so far-reaching that the alumni association has adopted as its motto, “The sun never sets on the students of God’s Bible School.” Our commitment to global evangelism remains strong as we prepare to train missionaries for the new millennium.

At the beginning of this century and of this millennium, Jesus calls His church to renewed devotion to its magnificent task of world evangelism. The William D. Gale Study Center for World Missions on the GBS campus will be a state of the art classroom and research complex to prepare GBS students for that purpose. Housing our Division of Intercultural Studies and World Missions, it will be constructed in the Knapp Memorial Building. Our eventual plans, however, are to place it in a new campus educational building yet to be constructed.
To train today’s missionaries for tomorrow’s work cannot be done without reminders of yesterday’s heroes. Thus, the new study center will not only contain the necessary resources for our students’ preparation for worldwide service; but it will also surround them with the rich heritage of Dr. Gale and other great missionaries who have forged the trail before them. To augment our purpose, all funds raised above the amount for the missions center will be placed in a William D. Gale Scholarship Fund, which will be used for annual scholarship awards to qualifying missions majors.

An existing area in the lower-level classroom area of the Knapp Memorial Building will be completely renovated to accommodate 25 to 30 students, as well as the on-site resources essential to their training. These will include Dr. Gale’s library of approximately 3,000 volumes and memorabilia of past mission ministries, as well as a computer for research, a ceiling-mounted projector, and a retractable screen for Power-Point presentations. Two walls will house the library and resource materials, and another will contain a lighted world map approximately 14 by 8 feet. The study center will be located across the hall from the office of Daniel Glick, incoming chairman of the GBS Division of Intercultural Studies and World Missions.

Total cost of the William D. Gale Center for Intercultural Studies and World Missions is projected at $35,000, and construction should be completed by late August. We hope that you, like many many others in the Revivalist Family, will help make this new adventure a reality. An honor plaque will recognize those individuals, families, or churches who have given at least $1,000; and this may be in installments.
“Missions have been my life and passion for over 60 years,” Dr. Gale notes. “Although my remaining days of active labor are few (I’ve just turned 80), I want to do one last thing that will perpetuate the love and work of missions for years to come.” Your help in this adventure will not only honor Dr. Gale, but will also be an investment in the cause which he so dearly loves.
It’s all “because the harvest hasn’t ended!”

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by Michael R. Avery

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by Larry D. Smith

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