It’s been a long time since I’ve taken a spontaneous road trip like the one in college where we just up and went to the beach for the weekend (from Urbana, IL to Wilmington, NC!). This August I took a semi-spontaneous road trip of similar length and duration to help Peter Malik move his family from Dortmund, Germany to Banská Bystrica. Peter will be joining our faculty at the seminary as we say farewell to one of our professors.
Farewell to Professor Peres
This summer we received a bit of a surprise when Professor Peres tendered his resignation from our faculty. Professor Peres has been a long time fixture as Professor of New Testament and he leaves a big gap to fill in our seminary.
To maintain accreditation we are required to have at least one full professor on our faculty and so we’re very glad that even with Professor Peres’ resignation, we still have two full professors, one of whom is near retirement and one of whom was just appointed in March of this year.
The main gap left by Professor Peres is in the area of New Testament studies. Biblical studies are the core of our program and Peres was the only “pure” New Testament scholar on our faculty. And then of course there’s simply the hours of teaching that we need to cover in his absence.
Welcome to the Malik Family
That’s where Peter and his family come in. In August I helped move Peter and his family from Dortmund, Germany to Slovakia. That brings him, his wife Zuzka and their four children (Ondrej, Timotej, Benjamin, and Klára) back to their hometown. Actually, Ondrej was born in Slovakia but the twins were born in Cambridge where Peter did his PhD studies and Klára was born in Germany. But they’re all glad to be home in Slovakia.
Peter comes to our seminary as a postgraduate research scholar. For now, he’s not a direct member of our seminary faculty. Instead, he’ll be here for two years working on special research projects with the goal of publishing as much as possible. Peter is a world-class philologist who published his dissertation on a text critical analysis of a papyrus manuscript containing part of the Book of Revelation (if you check out this Wikipedia page on Papyrus 47 you’ll see his book listed in further reading).
Even though Peter is not yet a member of our faculty he’s already taking on some teaching responsibility. He also adds a little spice to our office. I share an office with a Christian History prof (Dr. Jaroslav Madar). I like to say that it was so quiet in our office he and I used to have to occasionally turn around to make sure the other one was still there. Not so with Peter as an officemate! He definitely spices things up with his lively personality and somehow seems to up our productivity at the same time.
After his postgrad stint with us is done in a couple of year’s we hope he’ll join our faculty at the seminary. Not only is he a world-class scholar and a great officemate, the students love him as a teacher and, most importantly, he has a heart for God’s church.
Welcome Maliks! We’re looking forward to what God has in store as he builds his church in Slovakia through the ministry of our seminary.