Thursday, June 26, 2008

See why I prefer uni education?


Ichabod blogged a couple of months on how a seminary can have grave influence on its graduates for good or ill. It all depends on who is teaching.

In one of his posts, he blogged about a recent graduate from a "confessing" seminary here; the gentleman is said to be just one of the many who have either journeyed to Rome or Constantinople. The thought is this - it alleges that the said seminary produces graduates who eventually abandon the "confession". Ironic, if it were true, then this suggests that it seems to produce more defectors than defenders of the "confession".

A few months ago, I said why I prefer university education over seminary when it comes to ministerial training here. Did you get my point why I prefer university education?

You see in a university education - when it comes to theology at least there you recognize right away your "enemy". In the university, the liberals let you know right away that they do not believe the Bible is revelation, they tell you it is a work of myth etc. etc. In that respect the liberals are more ethical compared to Christian professors in seminaries. Liberals show their colors right away. In seminaries you do not know the "moles" or the "in-plants", it is so easy to hide behind the smoke and jargon.


William Weedon said...

I'd be curious if you could substantiate that it produces "more defectors than defenders." I suspect that's a gross overstatement. If two or three left from every class over the last 10 years, how would that amount to more than the numerous pastors who remain in the Lutheran Church's ministerium?

L P Cruz said...

Pr. Will,

I updated my statement but if you notice, I used the word "alleges", and the word "seems", I am reporting what has been alleged.

I carefully chose my words but not careful enough.

I do not of course have data, I am comenting on the coment.

What is a "class" in your terms, is this a batch?

BTW what I am saying is that uni education has less potential for being misleading, you know what you are getting and the onus is on you.

In seminary education, a person with good intentions can come in under some secured assumptions only to be re-oriented or re-molded in a different direction.

Also what I am pointing out is that in-breeding of ideas is not good.


Anonymous said...

Looking at it from another angle: so many of the young men who come to seminary nowadays have very little in the way of formation in the Christian life and a basic knowledge of doctrine and scripture that I would shudder to think what they might become if we entrusted their theological education to a university.
For a mature student, yes, I can see the university would have definite benefits in rounding out their formation(for that reason I continue to keep abreast (time permitting) of the better liberal biblical and theological studies, which display a high level of scholarship and often contain valuable insights); but for the immature, the seminary (seed bed) remains indispensable for the church at present, even with the problems you mention.

L P Cruz said...

Pr. M,

I am showing my age.

You are right, I have neglected that angle, for this reason, it is still good that if the seminary student is mentored by his local pastor even though he may be going to sem. What do you think of this?

BTW, I was invited to attend our districts pastor's retreat.

I am so blessed to be amongst people in our synod who believe they do not have it all and are struggling with issues brought in front of them. Someone said that when our synod stops struggling it will cease to skillfully walk the middle line which in my terms - evangelical and catholic.

This is really a more humble way of approaching church life - I am quite at home with that sort of spirit. This recognizes that we are both 'sinner and saint' in front of God.


Anonymous said...

Yes, I agree, mentorship by a practising pastor is crucial, and in fact this is what happens at our seminary - the student is under the supervision of a local pastor for field work and later for vicarage.

I'm glad to hear you benefited from the LCAVIC pastors' retreat. The LCA has a high calibre of pastors and leadership down there.

Btw, I am presently considering a call to a parish in Victoria, so that calibre may be lowered somewhat if I accept :-).

Back to sermon writing for now.

Augustinian Successor said...

"If two or three left from every class over the last 10 years, how would that amount to more than the numerous pastors who remain in the Lutheran Church's ministerium?"

The use of the word, "remain" is in itself a curiosity. Lutheran ministers, i.e. true confessional Lutheran ministers, do not "remain" in Lutheranism. They rightly *belong* to Lutheranism.

Lutheranism is here to stay, lock stock and barrel by the grace of God alone.

Doorman-Priest said...

I agree very strongly about academic theology verses confessional theology. There is an ant-intellectual strand in many modern churchmanships that is almost akin to intellectual fascism with overtones of a book-burning philosophy.

Ranting (sorry, blogging) about one expression of that - the inerrancy of scripture just now

L P Cruz said...

Pr. M.

Btw, I am presently considering a call to a parish in Victoria, so that calibre may be lowered somewhat if I accept :-).

Victoria is aching for pastors, and I mean I am serious. The situation is not good, truly the prayer of Jesus : Pray the Lord of the harvest bring in workers for the harvest.

With what I have known about you in our interaction here, please accept, we are aching.

I would volunteer for any interim work if not for my thesis project.

Hope to see you soon in Victoria.


L P Cruz said...


Fascism? You took the words from my mouth but anti-intellectualism is a characteristic of fundamentalism.

Such is the character of fundamentalism - be it Christian or Muslim.