Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Educating for Mission

This morning I sat in a session led by Steven Hayes, a Greek Orthodox deacon, who is participating in the Joint Conference of Academic Societies in the Field of Religion and Theology. He raised the difficult question of ministry to migrant workers. These are people who are desperate for Christian community, and for Christian teaching - but there are very few trained leaders/priests/ministers available where the poorest of the poor work. He urged us to find ways of training people for mission that does not first require an expensive academic education to accredit that person for ministry.

"Book-learning" is not necessarily the best model for illiterate or badly educated communities. Asking a person to get a Seminary/Bible College/University education before exercising ministry creates a ministry only for those from backgrounds with money and education.

This opens up space to think about different kinds of ministry, with differently trained people. I hope to continue this discussion.

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1 comment:

Steve Hayes said...

I hoped we might get a chance to continue the discussion, and others, at the conference, but the opportunity didn't seem to arise. But will be in Pmb again in a fortnight's time, so perhaps then?