Who are the Strengthening Ministries Training Institute Faculty?

The teachers at Strengthening Ministries Training Institute have extensive postgraduate training in Biblical Counselling and are certificated with the Association of Certified Biblical Counsellors (ACBC). They are doctrinally aligned with the 1689 Baptist Confession of Faith and committed to the sufficiency of Scripture in helping their students discover God’s answers to life’s problems.

Dr. Wayne Mack
Dr. Wayne Mack
Dr Wayne Mack is a graduate of Wheaton College, Philadelphia Seminary and Westminster Theological Seminary as well as having done extensive graduate studies at La Salle University, Eastern Baptist Seminary, Wheaton Graduate School and Trinity Evangelical Seminary. Dr Mack was chairman of the graduate and undergraduate counselling programmes at The Master’s University and Seminary in Los Angeles, California. He currently serves as an Elder at Lynnwood Baptist Church and is the Director of ACBC Africa. Dr. Mack has been inducted into the highest level of membership in the ACBC, and has authored 26 books on counselling issues.
Pr. Sybrand de Swardt
Pr. Sybrand de Swardt
Pastor Sybrand de Swardt is Pastor of Lynnwood Baptist Church in Pretoria where he serves with Dr Mack and is the Director of Strengthening Ministries Training Institute (SMTI). Pastor Sybrand has completed his MA in Biblical Counselling from The Master’s University and is in the process of obtaining his Doctorate of Ministry from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. He is a certified ACBC counsellor and has taught extensively on counselling related issues at SMTI as well as done extensive counselling.
Dr. Jim Newheiser
Dr. Jim Newheiser
Jim Newheiser is currently the Director of the Christian Counselling Programme as well as the Associate Professor of Counselling and Practical Theology at Reformed Theological Seminary in Charlotte, North Carolina. He is both a Certified Counsellor, Fellow, and Board Member for The Association of Certified Biblical Counsellors (ACBC). He is presently serving as a Council Board Member for The Biblical Counselling Coalition, and he was formerly a Board Member with the Fellowship of Independent Reformed Evangelicals.

Jim received his BA in Business Administration from Baylor University in Waco, Texas and then both his MA and D. Min from Westminster Seminary in Escondido, California.

Jim has served in the position of Pastor or Youth Leader/ Director at Grace Bible Church in Escondido, California, Calvary Covenant Church in Poway, California, International Christian Fellowship of Jeddah in Saudi Arabia, Believers Chapel of Dallas, Texas and Central Baptist Church of Waco, Texas.

Jim’s teaching experience includes international training trips to Korea, India, Spain, Germany, Qatar, Oman, Nigeria, Mexico and the Philippines. He has served as a lecturer in preaching and assistant to the director of the D. Min program at Westminster Theological Seminary in California. Jim has served at the Institute for Biblical Counselling for 24 years and has been the director there for the past 12 years. Jim is an adjunct professor in the Biblical Counselling department at The Master’s University in California.

Jim has written or contributed to 16 publications including numerous books in the Help! Mini series through Shepherd Press, several books on parenting such as When Good Kids Make Bad Choices, You Never Stop Being a Parent, and Parenting is more than a Formula. His most recent work was published through P&R Publishing and is entitled Marriage, Divorce and Remarriage—Critical Questions and Answers. Jim has also contributed to The Journal of Biblical Counselling, The Journal of Modern Ministry, Men Counselling Men, Christ Centred Biblical Counselling and Biblical Counselling and the Church.

Jim has been married to his wife, Caroline, since 1979 and they have three adult children.

Dr. Tedd Tripp
Dr. Tedd Tripp
Tedd Tripp is the President of a non-profit organisation called Shepherding the Heart Ministries. Tedd has both developed and taught materials for this ministry and is known around the world for his best-selling child rearing book, Shepherding a Child’s Heart, and as the presenter of Shepherding a Child’s Heart Ministries.

Tedd Tripp is Pastor Emeritus of Grace Fellowship Church in Hazleton, Pennsylvania, where he served from 1980 until 2012. Tedd was married to his wife, Margy, in 1968; they are parents of three adult children and 9 grandchildren. Tedd is also the author of A Parent’s Handbook for Shepherding a Child’s Heart, Hints for Parents, and with his wife, Margy, Instructing a Child’s Heart.

Dr. Tripp received his BA from Geneva College in Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania, his M. Div from Philadelphia Theological Seminary in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and his D. Min from Westminster Theological Seminary in Glenside, Pennsylvania.

Dr. Nicolas Ellen
Dr. Nicolas Ellen
Nicolas Ellen is the Senior Pastor of Community of Faith Bible Church and a Professor of Biblical Counselling at the College of Biblical Studies, both in Houston, Texas. He has served in full time ministry as a Christian Education Director, Associate Pastor, Assistant Pastor, and Senior Pastor for the past 19 years also in the Houston, Texas area. He has developed a biblical counselling training center called Expository Counselling Center, LLC.

Dr Ellen received his BA in Business Administration from the University of Houston, Houston, Texas, his MA in Christian Education from Dallas Theological Seminary, Dallas, Texas, his MA in Biblical Counselling from The Master’s College, Santa Clarita, California and a D. Min in Biblical Counselling from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky and he is also currently enrolled there as a PhD student in Biblical Counselling.

Dr Ellen is a certified Biblical Counsellor with the Association of Certified Biblical Counsellors (ACBC) and travels nationwide with the organisation teaching biblical counselling principles. In addition, he is also a Senior Member of the Biblical Counselling Framework Association. Dr Ellen teaches on a morning show called “Up With The Son” where he teaches various topics from God’s Word. Pastor Ellen has authored books such as Coming to Know and Walk with God, So You Want to Get Married, Happy Even After, Pursuing Godliness Through the Disciplines of the Christian Faith, With All Your Heart? Identifying and Dealing With Idolatrous Lust, Understanding and Developing a Biblical View of Life, Biblical Framework Counselling Basic Training Course, Marriage and Family Basic Training Course, The Dynamics of Biblical Counselling, Common Issues We Face in Life, Biblical Counselling Practicum, and Every Christian a Counsellor.

He and his wife, Venessa, have 2 children and 4 grandchildren.

Dr. Edward Wilde
Dr. Edward Wilde
Edward Wilde received his JD from the University of San Diego in San Diego, California and his MA in Biblical Counselling from The Master’s University in Santa Clarita, California. Edward has been a member of the bar since 1989 and a professor at The Master’s University since 2002.

He has been published in the Whittier Law Review, UCLA Entertainment Law Review, Intellectual Property Law Journal, and has written articles for the ABA, California State Bar Intellectual Property Bar Journal and The Los Angeles Daily Journal.

He has taught Theology, Doctrine of the Church, Discipleship in the Local Church, Essential Qualities of a Biblical Counsellor, Business Law and Introduction to Psychology.

Dr. Jennifer Chen
Dr. Jennifer Chen
Jennifer Chen has a PsyD and MA in Clinical Psychology from Fuller Graduate School of Psychology in Pasadena, California, an MA in Marriage and Family Therapy from Azusa Pacific University in Azusa, California, and an MA in Biblical Counselling from The Master’s University in Santa Clarita, CA. She has taught and provided supervision as a PsyD for 10+ years. She has coauthored multiple articles published in academic Psychology journals.
Beth de Swardt
Beth de Swardt
Beth de Swardt has a MA in Biblical Counselling and worked in campus ministry for 5 years after receiving her degree. She also taught women’s ministry classes in the Biblical Counselling Department of The Master’s University for 9 years. For many years, she was involved in helping to lead the Women’s Ministry at Calvary Bible Church in Burbank, California. She came to South Africa in 2005 to work with a ministry helping children with the HIV. In all of these positions, she was actively involved in teaching, counselling and discipling women. She met the love of her life, Sybrand de Swardt, in South Africa and they have been married since January 2009. God has blessed them with one little girl, Carol-Marie and an adopted son, Thomas-Wayne. She is a member of Lynnwood Baptist Church where her husband pastors and she is actively involved in ministry there.
Dr. Glenn Dunn
Dr. Glenn Dunn
Glenn Dunn has been the Pastor at Cornerstone Bible Fellowship (CBF) in North Ridgeville, Ohio since 2004. Glenn has an BA in Communications with an emphasis in Public Relations from Cleveland State University in Cleveland, Ohio, a MA in Religious Education with an emphasis in Theological Studies from Grand Rapids Baptist Theological Seminary in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and a D. EdMin in Biblical Counselling through Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky.

Glenn has been an ACBC Certified Biblical Counsellor since 2002. He is the Founder, Board Member and Instructor of the Biblical Counselling Institute (BCI) which was approved by ACBC in 2006 and established at CBF 2015. Glenn is also a plenary annual conference speaker, a workshop speaker and trainer of biblical counselling internationally in Trinidad, St. Lucia, Ukraine and Australia. He is a FIRE Executive Board Member (Fellowship of Reformed Evangelicals), FIRE Moderator, National and Regional FIRE Conference Speaker and GARBC National Conference Workshop Speaker. Glenn has been married for 27 years to his wife, Beth, and they have two children, Jack and Caroline.

Pr. Mike Brunk
Pr. Mike Brunk
Mike Brunk received his BA in Zoology from Ohio University in 1979. He served as an Elder in Athens (Ohio) Bible Church until 2001 when he and his family moved to South Africa to serve as a church-planter in the Kathorus region of Johannesburg. He currently serves as the senior pastor of Kathorus Bible Church. In 2013, he completed the two-year SMTI programme with Dr. Wayne Mack in Pretoria. He completed his MABC from Faith Seminary, Lafayette, Indiana, in 2020. He is a certified counselor with ACBC.
Dr. Andrew Rogers
Dr. Andrew Rogers
Andrew and his wife, Jenny, live in Anaheim Hills, CA and have four children. Andrew has been in ministry for over 27 years as a pastor, professor, and missionary. He is a pastor at Kindred Community Church and serves as Executive Director of Overseas Instruction in Counseling, a ministry devoted to training biblical counseling trainers around the world. He is a Fellow and Board Member with ACBC.
Dr. Daniel Berger
Dr. Daniel Berger
Dr. Daniel R. Berger II is the founder and director of Alethia International Ministries (AIM), where he continues to speak around the country at various conferences and ministries. He is also an experienced pastor, counselor, school administrator, and the author of numerous books on Christian counseling, practical theology, education, and the history and philosophy of the mental health construct. Daniel attended Bob Jones University and Florida International University, where he earned four degrees in counseling and theology. He is also a certified member of the International Association of Biblical Counselors (IABC). When he is not speaking, he and his wife Oriana live in Greenville South Carolina with their three children.
Dr. Anne Dryburgh
Dr. Anne Dryburgh
Anne Dryburgh, Ph.D., is an ACBC and an IABC certified biblical counselor and a CABC (Commissioned Addictions Biblical Counselor) who has been a missionary with Echoes International in Flemish-speaking Belgium since the 1990s. She coordinates Reigning Grace Institute Europe, and is an Overseas Instruction in Counseling and Truth in Love Biblical Counseling team member. She is on the advisory board of Fallen Soldiers March and is the author of Debilitated and Diminished: Help for Women in Emotionally Abusive Marriages, and (Un)ashamed: Christ’s Transforming Hope for Rape Victims.
Dr. Bill Hines
Dr. Bill Hines
Bill Hines, B.A. Political Science, M.A. Religion, M.A. Counseling, D.Min. Biblical Counseling is the President of Covenant Ministries, Inc., a biblical counseling and education ministry in Ft. Worth, TX. Bill is the author of: Leaving Yesterday Behind; Curing the Heart (with Howard Eyrich, D.Min.); Homework CD for Biblical Counseling, (with Howard Eyrich, D.Min.); Paul the Counselor (with Mark Shaw, contributing editors), The Pursuit of Perfection (with Mark Shaw) and numerous articles on the Christian life. A frequent speaker in the U.S. and abroad Bill serves as team member with The Addiction Connection (TAC: www.theaddictionconnection.org) and is a Commissioned Addictions Biblical Counselor. An ordained Minister of the Gospel of Christ. Bill and his wife, Kathy, have five children and seven grandchildren & reside in Ft. Worth, Texas.

Bill’s greatest desire is to help people consistently exchange the worship of self for the worship of God to increasingly grow as followers of Christ to the glory of God.