The second graduating class of Northeastern Baptist College was charged to “live a life that takes on mountains” on May 13th, 2017.

Dr. Brian Harmon, Vice President of Academics and Professor of Church Planting, addressed the graduates with a message from Joshua chapter 14, reminding them to wholly follow the Lord by readily accepting challenges.

Harmon’s charge to the graduates no longer to “ask God to remove all the obstacles but instead ask to take them on” is piercingly relevant, particularly considering the rocky spiritual terrain of the Northeast.

Harmon asked how the Northeast might be transformed “if we decided to fight for the hard things--for the broken families and marriages, for the drug epidemic in our region, for our neighbors to know the Lord?”

“My prayer for all in attendance is that God would fill our hearts with desire for the mountains.” Harmon himself will soon be returning to the mountains in West Virginia to pastor Nehemiah Baptist church, where he served as pastor prior to coming to NEBC 4 years ago.

Professor of Hebrew and Old Testament, Andrew Lee, will also be embarking on a new adventure as he continues his education at Cambridge University in the UK.

Both professors were honored with special awards from the college for their influential service, along with a special resolution of appreciation from the trustees for Harmon.

Also presented during the graduation ceremony were the Northeast Impact Awards, which honor ministry leaders in the area and are open for nominations each year.

-- Scholar award: David Jackson, church planting director and strategist of the Baptist Convention of New England.

-- Shepherd Award: Clyde McCaskill, senior pastor of Hoosic Valley Community Church in Schaghticoke, NY.

-- Soldier Award: Earl Edgerley, retired pastor of Farmington Baptist Church and founder/director of the Farmington Center summer camp, Farmington, Maine. Award received on his behalf by Terry Dorsett, executive director and treasurer of the Baptist Convention of New England.

In closing, trustee board secretary Ron Poitras thanked God for the significance of the graduation ceremonies that day for Northeastern Baptist, and expressly ”for these soldiers going out into the field.”

Valedictorian Michael Carrel recalled in his speech the many times he had seen God at work in his life through the school, even from the first. “It wasn’t long after I heard about Northeastern Baptist College,” he said, “before I realized God was at work here.”

The work will be continuing at NEBC with two new professors arriving July 1st, both of whom sense a strong leading of God to join the effort.

Dr. Lee Williams will be NEBC’s new Vice President of Academics and Professor of History; Dr. Timothy Christian will be Director of Communication and Distinguished Professor of Theology.

“Our 2nd Annual Graduation provided a great opportunity to celebrate and praise the Lord for all He has accomplished in the life of our graduates,” said President Ballard.

“Each of our graduates are already serving the Lord faithfully and making a difference in the Northeast! As we celebrate this milestone, we also look forward with great anticipation to what the Father is going to do next.”