Seminary Receives $15,000 Grant for Transcontinental Initiative in North American and African Wesleyan/Methodist Theological Education￼
September 20, 2022
Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary is excited to share it has received a $15,000 grant from the In Trust Center for Theological Schools for a transcontinental initiative focused on joint research, knowledge production, publication, and curricular innovation in North American and African Wesleyan/Methodist theological education. Garrett-Evangelical will also be matching the grant amount, providing a solid financial foundation for the initiative.
The grant will support the initiative’s first year of work, including:
- Mapping scholarly networks, institutions, scholarship, partnerships, and publications among sub-Saharan African and North American scholars in the Wesleyan/Methodist traditions who are actively engaged in-depth intercultural theological exchange, collaboration, joint research, and publishing;
- Laying the groundwork for projects for the second year of the initiative; and
- Convening representative groups of African and North American Wesleyan/Methodist scholars and thought leaders to serve as consultants and partners in organizing a theological symposium for the second year of the initiative, with an accompanying book project.
The initiative will be led by Dr. Hendrik Pieterse, associate professor of global Christianity and intercultural theology at Garrett-Evangelical. Pieterse is also the co-founder of the African Methodist Intercultural Dialogue Network, a forum where Methodist and Wesleyan scholars from across the African continent gather for intercultural theological inquiry, exchange, and learning about issues of shared concern and interest.
“The future of Wesleyan/Methodist theology in a world church is intercultural. Doing our theological work in relative isolation will no longer do,” said Pieterse. “So, I am delighted to be part of this initiative to support greater theological connection, collaboration, and exchange between African Wesleyan/Methodist scholars and their North American counterparts. We have much to learn from one another.”
The initiative also aligns with the seminary’s new strategic plan that features ecumenical, intercultural, and interreligious outreach as one of its core values and global and ecumenical partnerships as one of its strategic priorities.
“One of the priorities of our strategic plan is to position Garrett-Evangelical as a nexus of local and global strategic partnerships to address the critical religious and social challenges of our time,” said Rev. Becky Eberhart, vice president for strategic initiatives and partnerships. “This new initiative not only embodies our Wesleyan/Methodist understanding of connexionalism—which calls us into shared mission with others who share our mission and values—it also invites us to be a part of fostering a transcontinental learning network of scholars centered on mutually beneficial, substantive, and enduring theological exchange and collaboration.”
The In Trust Center for Theological Schools is a membership organization of over 230 seminaries, theological schools, and nonprofit educational institutions that have a mission of educating or forming students for ministry or related scholarship.
Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary forms courageous leaders in the way of Jesus to cultivate communities of justice, compassion, and hope for the thriving of the church and the healing of the world. Garrett realizes this mission through educational programming and strategic partnerships that address the most critical religious and social issues that the church and the human family must confront with courage, innovation, and collaboration.