For all their problems, churches are often a good deal more self-critical and boldly innovative than seminaries.
China's leaders still speak implicitly against religions with strong foreign ties. Meanwhile, Christian theology thrives in China.
What is it about theological educators that allows them to get along with civility and respect in spite of wide theological diversity? I attended the recent biennial meeting of the Association of Theological Schools and was impressed with the spirit of friendship there.
In this deeply researched and illuminating monograph, Elizabeth Clark examines the development of early church history as an academic field in the U.S.
Vanderbilt was not the first school to offer theological education in a prison. But it did pioneer the approach of having seminarians learn in company with prisoners.
"What would happen," asks Carol Howard Merritt of Western Presbyterian Church in Washington, D.C., "if we coupled baby boomers' prophetic focus with the pragmatism of my generation? What if the church unleashed us to plant churches?"
I'm a part-time student at a denominational seminary, where I'm working (very slowly) on an academic-track masters. It's generally been a good experience, but the school's not a perfect fit. Again and again, professors and coursework assume a ministry context.