Date of Award

1977

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

School

School of Education

Program

Religious Education, PhD

First Advisor

George H. Akers

Second Advisor

Mercedes H. Dyer

Third Advisor

William G. Johnsson

Abstract

Problem: Theological education is an important concern of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in the South Pacific Islands. Current concerns include ascertaining the best type of theological education for the Adventist Church in this region; determining cultural influence on curriculum; designing a model for the coordination of theological education in Oceania; outlining alternative three-year diploma and four-year bachelor’s-degree curricula; and offering recommendations for the development of Adventist ministerial education in Oceania. The purpose of this study was to present strategies that may assist the Seventh-day Adventist Church to find possible solutions to these concerns.

Method: This study utilizes the historical, descriptive, and developmental methods.

Conclusions: The study arrived at the following conclusions; (1) until the early 1970’s, Adventist theological education kept abreast academically with most other Protestant denominations; (2) to keep pace with academic developments, a degree in theology needs implementing; (3) some indigenous persons will require advanced theological education overseas; (4) plans and policies should be implemented so ministerial students can learn to cope with new societal demands and situations; (5) degree training needs to be centralized; (6) theological training should be academically equivalent with other professional studies so the ministry cannot be considered an irrelevant and unimportant profession; (7) a balance should be maintained between theory and practice, faith and action, and study and work; (8) courses should concentrate less on Western academic curricula and more on practical skills and professional studies; (9) schools need to provide married students’ accommodations, 910) Fulton College may be the best institution to commence degree-level training; (11) the content of model three of the diploma-curriculum outlines is favored by the researcher; (12) of the bachelor-degree curriculums outlined, model eight, with its emphasis on practical-professional studies is favored by the researcher; (13) theological educators have the greatest impact and influence on students; (14) the Adventist Church should not rely upon vernacular training schools for its ministry; (15) degree-level training that provides an understanding of urban problems, marriage, and family life, and youth ministry is essential; and (16) training should prepare men for pastoral-evangelistic ministry.

Recommendations: Recommendations arising from the study were: (1) establish an Inter-Union Educational Coordinating Committee to locate a degree-awarding training center and implement a coordinating master-plan, (2) introduce a Bachelor of Theology degree, (3) include Third World theological educators on the proposed training staff, (4) educate three indigenous ministers on the graduate-level annually, (5) replace expatriate staff with educated indigenous personnel, (6) provide accommodation for married students, (7) raise prerequisite, educational entrance levels to lay training schools, and graduate students with a Certificate of Theology, (8) and (9) alter Fulton and Sonoma college prerequisite levels, (10) commence theological extensions classes, (11) develop continuing theological-education programs for field personnel, (12) contextualize theological curriculum, (13) support cultural values in curricular content and methods, (14) conduct a needs assessment, (15) involve students in concurrent field education, (16) seek accreditation of proposed curricula with Association of Seventh-day Adventist Colleges, and (17) apply for non-accredited membership in local associations of theological schools for Fulton and Sonoma Colleges.

Subject Area

Clergy--Training

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