Why are we in Oxford? How long do we plan to be here?
Alex is reading for a Ph. D. (or D. Phil.) in theology. The program is usually completed in approximately three years. This October marks the start of our second year.

What is Alex studying? Does Alex go to classes? What does his work week look like?
Alex is writing his dissertation on the Apostle Paul in the New Testament.  He does not attend classes, though he goes to many seminars and events during the terms to help increase his knowledge. We find the best way to operate is for him to keep very regular hours Monday-Friday all year. He almost always works at one of the library buildings, often the Radcliffe Camera. Sometimes he also puts in time on evenings and weekends, working from home. In addition to working on his dissertation and meeting with his supervisor, he writes other papers and articles for presentation in various venues.

Why a D. Phil.? What do we plan to do next?
It is our dream that Alex will teach theology/biblical exegesis in a place where students find access to scholars with credentials limited or unavailable. We hope to serve in the field of theological education. We believe that God has called us and is fitting us for this task, and that he will continue to provide everything we need and will lead us to the place where we are to be.

What will Betsy do?
Not teach theology! But there’s being a wife and being the mommy in this family. I’ll be the lady of the house, whatever it may look like. I think about schooling my children if necessary, about serving in church and in my neighborhood however I can, and about writing. On the line for “Profession” on official papers and visas and things, I’ll probably always be tempted to write “MISCELLANEOUS.”

What are we thankful for?
Okay, this one’s not asked all that frequently. But I knew an eye doctor in Wheaton, Illinois that always asked it, and how right he was. I tried to make a list, a moment ago, and it was very long. Let’s just say we are so thankful to God for his provision for our needs, his many good gifts, meaningful work for our hands to do, and for his mercies renewed daily.

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7 Responses to FAQ

  1. Elena says:

    I was just wondering these things myself, thank you for sharing/answering!

    Alex’s dissertation topic sounds wonderful! We went through “A Portrait of Paul” last month and were so blessed by the focused study of the apostle’s life. I’m sure there are many gems of knowledge being discovered!

    I think I’ve said it before but it truly is an encouragement to read of your joy in home life!

    • betsy says:

      When I started the blog I assumed readers would mostly know us, so I have never really explained. But it’s proven to be a good way to “cyber-meet” so many lovely people–like you. 🙂

  2. therigneys says:

    Bets- I love this picture of Alex in his study. I didn’t know your flat wrapped around like that with the balcony in between…that’s so fun! 🙂

  3. Deanna says:

    Was just having a giggle over your desire to use MISCELLANEOUS as your occupation. I definitely wrote ‘domestic goddess’ on my customs form when returning from Italy in March. The customs lady didn’t bat an eye. (Terribly disappointing.)

  4. Sheri Fraser says:

    Hi, Betsy.
    We have not met, but I linked to you from Deep Roots at Home and left you a note on another post. Having just read about your desires to be in the field of theological education, I echo my earlier encouragement to meet with Kevin and Angela Bywater. Kevin is director of Summit Oxford, a ministry created for culture and for Christ. http://www.summit.org/media/pdf/institutes/oxford/summit-oxford-prospectus.pdf I look forward to staying in touch through your sweet blog posts.
    Sheri Fraser

  5. Pingback: limbo, far south of certainty | part of the main

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