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Toward a Joint Ministerial Master’s Programme in the EUD

Toward a Joint Ministerial Master’s Programme in the EUD

The EUD Executive Committee took an historical vote at its Midyear Meeting

May 22, 2020 | CD-EUDNews

Bern, Switzerland. [CD-EUDNews.]. Due to its rich history, the Inter-European Division (EUD) of the Seventh-day Adventist Church has inherited two theological seminaries owned and governed by the Division Headquarters in Bern, Switzerland. The then Central-European Division developed Marienhöhe Seminary which later moved to Friedensau, and the then South-European Division established a Theological Faculty at Collonges. After the merge of the two divisions in 1972 the administration of the newly established Euro-Africa Division (now Inter-European Division) kept both institutions and continued to subsidize their educational activities.

In November 2015, the EUD Executive Committee mandated the new administration with the task to address the question of the two division-level educational institutions and to come up with a proposal that will reduce redundancy of ministerial programs at master’s level across the EUD.

After adequate discussions, the proposal that has been approved, incorporates the advantages of a common, division-administered theological programme hosted at one of EUD theological seminaries. The programme will be the flagship entry-level programme for pastoral education, governed by the EUD and offered at one of the existing theological faculties in the territory of the Division.

This proposal presents some unquestionable advantages. The common language of instruction, English, will create the opportunity for future leaders of the church to speak the same language and communicate without barriers. Also, the possibility for the future leaders of the church to spend two years in the same setting will offer the enormous advantage of knowing one another better, being exposed to different cultures, mindsets, and understanding.

The programme will be oriented toward educating pastors that are able to understand and bring the mission of the church to a level where it can successfully face the challenges of the post-Christian, post-modern European society. Such a situation will definitely foster the unity of the church in a multi-ethnic and multi- cultural setting that has become the new “normal” in Europe.

The students who will be admitted in the programme will receive full sponsorship for the two-year period of their studies; accommodation and board will also be borne by the EUD. These will be subject to a binding agreement between the student and the local field for service in the future.

The institution to host the master’s programme will be selected by a group of education experts and administrators nominated by the Executive Committee and based on criteria established by the same group at suggestions of the Executive Committee. Further steps of implementation are expected to be taken at the year-end meeting of the EUD.

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