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Southern Baptist Leader to Speak at CIU Commencement

April 29, 2011

Jerry Rankin, the president emeritus of the International Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention will deliver the commencement addresses at Columbia International University (CIU) on Saturday, May 14.    

The commencement exercises for CIU Seminary & School of Missions, and the CIU Graduate Programs will begin at 8:30 a.m. and exercises for the CIU Undergraduate School begin at 11:00 a.m.  Both events take place in Shortess Chapel on the campus of CIU.

CIU President Dr. Bill Jones will present diplomas to 234 graduates for degrees ranging from Bible Certificate to Doctor of Ministry.  The graduates will join the 17,000 other CIU alumni serving in nearly 150 countries. 

Rankin recently retired after 40 years of missionary service with the International Mission Board.  He and his wife, Bobbye, served in South and Southeast Asia for 23 years, including tenure as area director for the region; they lived in Thailand, Singapore, Indonesia and India.  For the last 17 years Rankin has served as president of the IMB, an organization sending and supporting more than 5,000 missionaries serving in 190 countries around the world.

Rankin is from Mississippi where he attended Mississippi College and later earned the M. Div. from Southwestern Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas.  He holds honorary doctorate degrees from Mississippi College and California Baptist University.  He is the author of eight books on missions, spiritual warfare and devotional topics

The public is invited to attend the commencements.  Columbia International University is located at 7435 Monticello Road, two miles north of Interstate 20 in Columbia.