I’ve been thinking about ministerial education. When I go to the doctor, the personal care they offer is important to me. I like my doctors to be personable and easy to talk to. But when it comes to my health, believe me when I say, I also care about the diploma hanging on their wall. It matters greatly to me that they have been adequately educated and trained to make decisions about my health care. I want them to have had more than a human anatomy class their freshman year of college. I want to know they have actually been to medical school, endured clinicals, been supervised in surgery rooms, and been certified to “practice” medicine.
Dr. David A. Busic, M.DIV., D.D. | President
Read President Busic’s thoughts concerning ministry, the pastorate, theology, theological education and the Church.
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I want you to think about a number. 25,550. If somebody gave you $25,550, you would be pleased. It’s a respectable sum of money. It would buy a better than average car. It would be a nice down payment for a home. You could even pay for a year of college tuition.
Jesus taught his disciples to pray: “Our Father.”
Not my Father… but our Father. Not give me today my daily bread… but give us today our daily bread. Not forgive me my sins… but forgive us our sins.
It’s interesting that the word “our” is actually the second word in the Greek text (not to mention Latin and Spanish). So it actually reads: “Father ours.”
Why did Jesus teach us to pray in the plural?
Let me be perfectly clear: Nazarene Theological Seminary is committed to contextualized education. Not all seminaries have the same priority. But we believe deep in our bones that at the heart of ministry preparation is equipping students to flourish in the particular contexts God places them. Supervised ministry is a requirement for every graduate. Mentoring ministry is built in to our 365m program.
I am intrigued by the lives of courageous risk-takers. Especially, those God has used to bring about significant change in the world. William Wilberforce was one of those people. Although he was born into a wealthy family and became a member of the British Parliament at the age of twenty-one, he was not satisfied with his money or his prestige. Instead, Wilberforce worked for forty-six years (yes, that is 46) to abolish the African slave trade in Great Britain. A lot can happen in forty-six years. One would think he would have given up.
My friend Ron had been a pastor his entire adult life. After taking a position at our denominational headquarters he and his wife began attending our church. During lunch together one day he said, “Pastor David, I must tell you, things look very different from the other side of the altar.” I thought I understood then what he was trying to express. Now I completely get it.