CBC alumni perspective: George M. Flattery
Name: George M. Flattery
Graduation Year: 1956
Major: B. A. in Bible
Current Position: Retired Missionary on Assignment
City and State: Springfield, Missouri
Tell us about your career and what you do now.
Esther and I met at CBI and were married in 1955. In 1956, we moved to Texas for further training where I graduated from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas with a doctorate in education. We served on staff at Oak Cliff Assembly in Dallas, Texas from 1958 to 1961. In 1961, we planted a church in Richardson, Texas.
Then, in 1966, we moved to Springfield where we started our missionary career and Esther earned her B.A. at Evangel, graduating in 1967. That same year, I became the founding president of International Correspondence Institute (ICI, now Global University) and served as president until 1999. I founded Global Colleagues (now Network211) and actively developed this ministry. From 2006-2010, I served as president of both Global University and Network211. Since 2015, I have continued to serve as the founder of Network211 and the Chancellor of Global University. Esther has served alongside me in all of these ministries.
What is your favorite memory from CBC?
There are, of course, many memories. One memory has to do with the classes I had with Dr. Donald Johns. My first year as a student was his first year as a teacher. Later, he became the Academic Dean. He had a way of interacting personally with students that challenged them to do their best. On one occasion, my assignment was to write several passages in the Gospel of John. I titled my paper “Flattery’s Commentary on John.” When he returned my paper to me with my grades, he signed his comments “Johns’ commentary on Flattery!” It was humorous but personally challenging and encouraging.
How did CBC help you identify/develop your calling?
Because I spent several of my boyhood years in Upper Volta (now Burkina Faso), West Africa, I was well acquainted with the need for world missions. So, CBI was a natural choice for me to attend. At CBI, the classes, chapel services, and “outstation” ministry all contributed to shaping the call of God in my life.
How did your experience at CBC prepare you for life after graduation?
Since 1966, Esther and I have been missionaries with AGWM. We have been involved in evangelism, discipleship, and training throughout our missionary career. Our years at CBI laid a foundation both in the Bible and in practice for our work.
What advice would you give a current student preparing for the workforce?
My advice would be to be diligent in all of your classes and studies. Also, take advantage of opportunities that may arise for ministry. Or, if you are preparing for some other vocation, seize the opportunities to serve in your field of choice. All students should be faithful to their own devotional life.
In my case, at another school, I had extensive studies in Social Science. This has been helpful to me in relating to people in related vocations, including vocational workers and educators.
What would you look for if you were in a position to hire a new graduate?
During my time as president of Global University and Network211, I had the privilege of enlisting the help of many people, including long-term and short-term missionaries. Many factors, such as background, training, skills, and others are involved. However, a key factor for me was to know what motivated each person. When people are assigned tasks for which they are already motivated, it makes working together easier. For example, a Youth Director should be passionate about reaching and ministering to young people.