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Making a Difference for Those Making a Difference

Wednesday 26th June 2024

Elise is making a difference because a Morling Scholarship made all the difference for her. Elise came to Australia with the intention of doing a few years in ministry and then returning to the USA to complete a degree in Journalism, but God changed her plans. In her own words 

 “I was gripped by discipleship, mission, the importance of communities of faith and watching lives transformed by the Gospel and Biblical teaching”. 

Elise had become involved with her local community centre and their housing team who assist the vulnerable. This ignited in her a heart to “serve the Local Church and help facilitate spaces of worship where individuals might meet with the Lord and have their own heart awakened to mission and loving their neighbour in a multitude of ways”.

Elise knew that to serve as she felt called, she needed to be equipped in the areas of Biblical exegesis and teaching. Elise is enrolled in a Bachelor of Theology which has given Elise the understanding she needs to take the message of Jesus to the people she meets: 

I’ve just finished 2 years of full-time study and I underestimate the amount that I have learned about the Word until it starts seeping out of me. This year I have found myself in coffee shops and pubs sharing meals with particular friends who ‘aren’t religious’ and they have very curiously asked me about my study, my faith, ‘why theology?”

But there have been challenges. Originally from the United States it is with great honesty Elise says: “I was terrified to take on the giant of trying to pay for a degree oversees having come off the back of a 7-year period of support-raising as a missionary. Low moments were not knowing how I’d make rent or pay the next lump sum of tuition - but I’ve been continually challenged to trust God knowing that he led me to study so he will provide.”

Through the gifts of others, she was provided with a scholarship to support her studies. Elise says “The scholarship has made a complete difference. I would not be able to study here in Australia without the scholarship. My entire degree and consequently this entire season of being in Sydney for study has been upheld by the scholarship opportunity.”

What are Elise’s plans to serve after graduating?

She says “I hope you will find me loving people, worshipping alone and corporately, studying and communicating the word, walking with others through their day-to-day joys and trials to help them see Jesus! I’d be keen to pastor young adults, creatives, or in a community organisation.” 

Elise acknowledges the generosity of those who have given to Scholarships seeing it as a ‘tangible grace’ but her perspective is greater than herself. She recognises that scholarships bring a diversity to the student body by removing barriers for students who might otherwise not afford to study.

“ I think this is deeply important to continue to train and send ministers who reflect the unity and breadth of Gods Kingdom. I am deeply grateful to be shaped over these years at Morling and the scholarships have enabled Morling to be a place where many can get trained to serve God in different contexts.”

Will you give to the next generation of missional leaders? We value your prayer and generosity as we trust that God is at work at Morling.

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