Rhetorically speaking

We face no shortage of proposals for fixing theological education. Sometimes the most outlandish are the most illuminating. Stanley Hauerwas has suggested scrapping the current fourfold academic division (biblical studies, church history, theology and ethics, and practical theology) in favor of directing all academic efforts toward answering one question: Why must it be that only ordained people should preside over the Eucharist? Attending to the questions of authority and sacramental practice inherent in that single query would quickly open up every other topic of import to Christian faith and life.

By comparison, the recommendation made by To Teach, To Delight, and To Move is rather mild, though still significant: ancient rhetoric should be returned to the forefront of theological education.


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