Eric Hinton, Katie Dula, Ruby McLean and Larry Smith comprise the first Eastern District Conference class of graduates of The Urban Ministry Institute (TUMI) of Lenoir, N.C.
TUMI site coordinator Clyde Ferguson and EDC minister Terry Hunt presented graduates with certificates in Christian Leadership Studies in an April 3 ceremony at The Life Center in Lenoir, where Hunt pastors.
“What did I see in these people?” Ferguson says. “I saw people who really have the love for God and who want to be out making disciples in some way.”
Ferguson and Hunt also presented posthumous certificates to family members of students Yvette Smith and Bryant Corpening who died before completing the program.
Marty Sanders, regional director of advancement for World Impact from Charlotte, N.C., gave the keynote address.
TUMI is the national training arm for World Impact and is designed to equip leadership for the urban church.
“This is our first TUMI graduation,” Hunt says. “This capstone curriculum has exceeded our expectations.”
The program stretched from four years to five as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, with a shift online happening partway through. As a result, Ferguson says more students have had an opportunity to participate.
This semester, TUMI is offering two classes in English and French, Hunt says, and Ferguson has students in Ohio and Tennessee. He hopes to add students from Maine and Washington, D.C., in the fall, at which time he anticipates adding units on church planting and trauma and healing.