Emad and Almess were appointed by CBM in January 2015 to serve at the Arab Baptist Theological Seminary (ABTS) in Lebanon, where they first met and studied.
Emad serves as a lecturer in the areas of Old Testament and Islamic studies at ABTS.
His desire is to equip and empower students with sufficient tools to develop their understanding of the Old Testament and to learn how to apply it in their Middle Eastern and North Africa setting. Emad is also developing resources and models for ministry in that context. While both Emad and Almess are involved in mentoring students in ministry and leadership skills, Almess will also explore opportunities to work with Iraqi and Syrian refugees.
Emad was born in Egypt where he was a high school teacher and later a pastor. Almess was born in Iraq where she earned her BA in accounting. After immigrating to Canada in 2005, Emad worked as a support worker, and Almess as an interpreter. Together, they served among the Arab immigrant community around Waterloo, Ontario. They have two boys Timothy and Nathaniel.
The Bible in the Context of Islam
Emad successfully defended his thesis last year at McMaster Divinity College:
The Merciful and Compassionate God: A Biblical Theology of Jonah in the Context of Islam
His work focused on developing a biblical theology of the Old Testament in the context of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), with research focusing on the intersection of the biblical texts and the Qur’an, with particular emphasis on the book of Jonah.
Welcome the opportunity to hear Muslims’ questions
Emad shares, “This study is very relevant to our ministry and to the church in the MENA region at various levels. As I teach, it is my desire to encourage our students to make the Bible more relevant to their own context, particularly to those who read the Bible from non-Christian backgrounds. I challenge them to welcome the opportunity to hear Muslims’ questions and challenges in regard to the book of Jonah. It is also my desire to help the church in the Arab world to develop more discipleship resources and models for teaching and preaching the Word of God in this unique setting. Therefore, I encourage the church to seriously take into consideration the Old Testament in its presentation of the life and the ministry of Jesus in the context of Islam.”