Jump directly to the Content

Seminary & Congregation: A Lovers' Quarrel?

With responses from two seminary presidents (George Brushaber, David McKenna) and two pastors (Martin Copenhaver, William Willimon).

The following article, which appeared last January in Theology Today, is reprinted here with permission. We also asked two pastors and two seminary presidents to respond to its ideas.

To speak of the relationship of the "seminary" to the "church" is to reveal a conceptual canker on the church today. For the seminary is as much the church as the local congregation. As near to the church as smoke to flame, to position the "seminary" against the "church" is to position the seminary against itself. The academy and the chapel are part of the same whole-the body of Christ. They need each other, for the church is incomplete when either is missing.

I

The most prominent feature of theological education today is the rediscovery of the congregation. For the past forty years, and indeed ever since seminaries breathed the air of biblical criticism, the body of Christ has not been fully united. Various organs of that body, the mind (theological seminaries) and the heart (koinonia congregations), have each ...

April
Support Our Work

Subscribe to CT for less than $4.25/month

Homepage Subscription Panel

Read These Next

Related
SEEKERS OR SAINTS: THE CHURCH CONFLICT OF INTEREST?
SEEKERS OR SAINTS: THE CHURCH CONFLICT OF INTEREST?
A Leadership Forum
From the Magazine
I Wanted a Bigger God Than My Hindu Guru Offered
I Wanted a Bigger God Than My Hindu Guru Offered
As my doubts about his teachings grew, so did a secret fascination with Jesus.
Editor's Pick
What Christians Miss When They Dismiss Imagination
What Christians Miss When They Dismiss Imagination
Understanding God and our world needs more than bare reason and experience.
close