It is an honor and privilege to celebrate Founder’s Day 2023, marking both the 159th anniversary of the establishment of Forman and the 202nd anniversary of the birth of Charles W. Forman, founder of our institution.
Reflecting on our history, it is striking to note the extent to which FCCU has provided a space for multiple voices from many communities to meet, serve, connect and learn from each other.
During the last 75 years, Forman has been very much a part of Pakistan’s story, contributing ideas and shaping lives that have in turn contributed to the growth, defense, and development of Pakistan.
We also recognize and acknowledge God’s provision and faithfulness throughout our history, recalling the voices of both the Psalmist David (“Unless the Lord builds the house, those who build it labor in vain”) and the prophet Isaiah (“I lay a stone in Zion, a precious cornerstone for a firm foundation”).
By some accounts, the first class at Forman met under a tree outside Old Lahore, gathered by Rev. Charles W. Forman himself; from the beginning, Forman enrolled students from every faith community represented in Punjab at the time.
It is said that hundreds of Lahoris from all walks of life gathered to honor Forman when he passed away in 1894, joining together to carry his earthly remains to his burial place in the Ghora Kabiristan near Taxali Gate. It was also reported at the time by those who knew him that he loved “the very dust of Lahore”.
Reflecting on this history on our Founder’s Day, let us take the opportunity to build on the best parts of our past, working together to further advance what Martin Luther King described as a “beloved community,” even as we strive to fulfill our long-standing motto: “By Love Serve One Another”.