Seminaries across the United States consider curriculum changes:
U.S. seminaries consider radical changes
By G. Jeffrey Macdonald in The Washington Post
For more than 200 years, Andover Newton Theological School (ANTS) has trained future pastors to have expertise in biblical studies, pastoral care and preaching.
But in today’s world, the nation’s oldest school of theology has decided that’s no longer enough, and other schools are starting to agree.
. . .
Andover Newton’s new standards are part of a larger movement to reconsider what future pastors need to learn. Curriculum revisions are underway at about a quarter of the 262 institutions in the Association of Theological Schools (ATS), according to ATS Executive Director Daniel Aleshire.
A generation ago, seminaries were less eager for curriculum reform as they felt pastors could learn practical skills on the job, Aleshire said. But now, churches increasingly need pastors to arrive ready to tackle a myriad of challenges, from addressing alcoholism and domestic violence to creating access for the disabled.
“A lot of schools are rethinking how they educate religious leaders,” Aleshire said. “There is a perception that ministry education is not just the accumulation of courses in the old disciplinary patterns. It has to be something more dynamic.”