Welcome to my Website!
My Unique Names:
You may have wondered about the name "Mwalimu" on my homepage. This name came about while I was teaching in Kenya. Students struggled a bit with my given names (Duane Mathias), but felt quite at ease using the title "mwalimu" (which means: "teacher" in Swahili). So, for many years I was referred to simply as "Mwalimu" by my students, and it remains natural for me to respond to that name. So feel free to call me "Mwalimu" (pronounced: mwa-lee'-moo) when we meet!
[The 2-year old cheetahs in the picture are real...one of those perks of teaching in Africa! My wife and I shared this unique up-close-and-personal experience with an exchange student who was attending our college in Kenya.]
My Previous Ministries:
From 1987 to 1990 I served as pastor in central Ohio. Along with my wife, Charma, we spent the next fifteen years as missionaries with World Gospel Mission with service in Kenya and Ukraine. As a missionary, I was involved in urban ministry in Kitale, Kenya, and then later taught and filled administrative roles at Kenya Highlands Bible College and Kiev Wesley Bible College. In 2005 we returned to the States and I began a new ministry as an Academic Advisor at Asbury Theological Seminary. After a one-year leave while serving on the faculty of Vennard College as a professor of World Evangelization, I returned to Asbury Seminary to resume my role as an Academic Advisor.
My Academic History:
If you are interested in resumé jargon, here's a peek into where I spent hours hitting the books...
I began college at Ohio State University, but finished my BA in Religion at Mount Vernon Nazarene University (1988). After some years in ministry, I returned to school to complete an MA in Theological Studies at Asbury Theological Seminary (1998). I then returned to ministry for several years before coming back to the E. Stanley Jones School of World Mission at Asbury Seminary where I completed some doctoral-level work in Intercultural Studies. While at Mount Vernon Nazarene University and Asbury Seminary, I was fortunate to be inducted into the Phi Delta Lambda Academic Honor Society in 1988 and the International Honor Society of Theta Phi in 1998.
My Interests Outside Vennard College:
I like to pursue a variety of interests beyond those of my academic areas of teaching. I am a great fan of all good music (but nothing beats the old folk style of the sixties!), and I enjoy playing the bass guitar, reading, traveling, woodworking, hiking and picnicking with my family. I am not a sports nut, but when I get a chance, it's nice to watch the Ohio State Buckeyes! I love all dogs, but am particularly crazy about Spaniels, having raised Cocker Spaniels, English Springer Spaniels, and now a King Charles Spaniel named Max (short for Maxentius or "Mad Max" as he more often is called!)
My family is by far the best gift God has given me in this world! I have a wonderful wife, Charma. We were married in 1979, and have worked together in ministry for the past 20 years, and she remains my very best friend. She is now also working at Vennard College as an assistant librarian. God has blessed Charma and I with wonderful kids who grew up in Kenya and both graduated from Rift Valley Academy before returning to the States to pursue their college and professional studies. Our daughter Bethany is married to Steven Enoch, and our son Kelsey is married to Paula.
This family picture was taken at our Christmas family reunion in 2006.
Duane & Charma Mathias
Bethany & Steven Enoch
Kelsey and Paula Mathias