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Consultation on Theological Education

Locating U.S. Theological Education In a Global
Context: Prospects, Problems, and Possibilities

Sponsored and funded by the Jerre and Mary Joy Stead Center for Ethics and Values at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary

U.S. theological education today finds itself in uncharted waters. Buffeted by complex globalizing forces, U.S. society is undergoing rapid social, demographic, and religious change, raising trenchant questions for the education of Christian leaders in the future. And with Christianity now a truly worldwide movement, these questions receive an unprecedented global dimension. How do U.S. theological seminaries and theological schools locate themselves within this globalizing ecology so as to be appropriate participants, contributors, and shapers of theological formation? What longstanding questions need fresh responses? What new questions arise that demand attention?

While debates about “globalization and theological education” are not new, surprisingly little attention has been paid to the longstanding literature on the internationalization of American higher education. This consultation explores topics and themes in this body of higher education literature we find particularly relevant for theological education today, such as the relationship between internationalization and globalization, the salience of global citizenship education, higher education and the global marketplace, and more. Engaging the larger debate in international higher education, we wager, yields several domains of common concern and opportunity that can offer U.S. seminaries and theological schools significant resources for construing institutional ethos, identity, and mission in a globalizing context.

Tentative Agenda

Friday, Oct. 7, 2016

7:00 p.m.     Greetings from Garrett-Evangelical President Lallene J. Rector, introductions, orientation

7:30 p.m.     Presentation 1: Hendrik Pieterse: “Globalizing U.S. Theological Education: Lessons and Cautions from U.S. Higher Education”

8:30 p.m.     Adjourn for evening

Saturday, Oct. 8, 2016

9:15 a.m.     Greetings, announcements

9:30 a.m.     Presentation 2: Luis R. Rivera: “Globalizing the Campus: Implications for Theological Education”

10:30 a.m.    BREAK

10:50 a.m.     Presentation 3: E. Byron Anderson: "Church Affiliation and Educational Mission in a Secularizing World"

12:00 p.m.    LUNCH (on your own)

1:30 p.m.       Presentation 4: Margaret Guider: "'Glocal' Catholicism and Globalization Privilege: Challenges for Roman Catholic Theological Education in the United States"

2:30 p.m.       BREAK

2:50 p.m.       Presentation 5: Namsoon Kang: “Global Politics of Knowledge and U.S. Theological Education”

Sunday, Oct. 9, 2016

9:15 a.m.      Greetings

9:30 a.m.      Presentation 6: Brent Waters: “Globalization and Global Theological Education: Learning to Navigate the World of Creative Destruction”

10:30 a.m.    BREAK

10:50 a.m.    Presentation 7: Kyle Small: “Global Citizenship Education in, with, and for Theological Schools: Forming Theological Leaders through Outrage, Lament, and Justice”

12:00 p.m.     LUNCH (on your own)

1:00 p.m.       Reflections and Conversation: David Esterline and Lester Ruiz

2:30 p.m.        ADJOURN


Dr. E. Byron Anderson, Ernest and Bernice Styberg Professor of Worship
Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary

Dr. Margaret Guider, Associate Professor of Missiology
Boston College

Dr. Namsoon Kang, Professor of Theology and Religion
Brite Divinity School, Texas Christian University

Dr. Hendrik Pieterse, Associate Professor of Global Christianity and World Religions
Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary

Dr. Luis R. Rivera, Vice President for Academic Affairs and Academic Dean
Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary

Dr. Kyle Small, Dean of Formation for Ministry and Associate Professor of Church Leadership
Western Theological Seminary

Dr. Brent Waters, Jerre and Mary Joy Stead Professor of Christian Social Ethics
Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary



Dr. David Esterline, President and Professor of Cross-cultural Theological Education
Pittsburgh Theological Seminary

Dr. Lester Ruiz, Senior Director of Accreditation and Institutional Evaluation
Association of Theological Schools

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