Wednesday, July 16, 2014
When I did my M.Div., it provided me with a strong theological foundation but it didn't teach me the realities of pastoral life. Things like how to plug in a wireless microphone or how to run a business meeting or how to raise money for a building fund were not taught. These practical activities are realities in the global church.Most of the comments are in that vein. They reflect a reality not just of seminary education, but higher education generally - there is a difference between education and job training. Seminary does the former, but not the latter. What I do not want are well trained but uneducated pastors. What I do want are well educated and well trained pastors. I don't think the problem is seminary, I think the problem is what comes after, and to a large extent the students.
It used to be that students came out of seminary and severed in lower staff positions as a form of apprenticeship. Nowadays we load them up with responsibility and the senior pastor doe not see such developmental work as part of his duty. This is in part because students are impatient for responsibility.
But it is also true that education is never about job tr5aining. Education, particularly at grad school levels, is about developing the individual and their mind.
My opinion - undergrad ministry training programs for people that want to do professional ministry and graduate school (seminary) for those so inclined.