INTER-REGIONAL MEETING REAFIRMS MINISTERIAL EDUCATION ALLIANCE
(NCSA) A virtual meeting was held between The Regional Course of Study Advisory Committees for the South American and Mesoamerican Regions on September 29 and October 1, 2020 to forward the work of ministerial education in the regions.
Since 1999 the two regions have combined forces with their shared language and similar culture in the formation of pastors. They have used the same Ministerial Development Guide, which serves to approve and implement ministerial education on both regions. Culturally, there are similarities. The two regions have unique languages, with areas of Spanish, English, French, and Portuguese among other languages. Fortunately, technology helped with the differences and made possible simultaneous translation available in the four major languages. This allowed all the members to have a voice and participate wholly in the meetings.
The main work of the meeting was to reapprove the Ministerial Development Guide until the year 2024. The agenda of the meeting covered general updates to the guide, including recent updates to the Manual of the Church of the Nazarene. The second work of the meeting was to review an alternative focus to balance the four “C”s of courses on the regions (content, context, character, competence). Up to the now, the use of the four “C”s has been based on a system that the leaders and teachers in both regions found difficult to define. A change was proposed to allow for focus or emphasis on the four Cs depending on the course, this an alternative that has been approved by the International Course of Study Advisory Committee (ICOSAC).
Another job of the joint committees was to review the updates to the 30 basic courses for ordination. Six new courses were introduced as essentials for changing or expanding the content of the existing courses. The intention was to maintain the number of 30 courses in the studies program for ordination to ministry in the Church of the Nazarene.
Dr. Jorge Julca, South American Regional Theological Education Coordinator said, “This meeting has been historic. Not only for the fact that it was done using the technology during the pandemic, but because it allowed us to join forces for the Kingdom. In God’s will, the regions have been able to work together for many years, making us better stewards of our educational efforts. I anticipate that this ministerial companionship will continue being a powerful resource for years to come, and it will help equip people who have a call from God to ministry.”
Dr. Ruben Fernandez, Mesoamerica Regional Theological Education Coordinator shared his thoughts, “We celebrate this strategic alliance with our sister region in South America, which we have had for many years. This alliance has been reaffirmed and strengthened during these joint meetings. The results of our work will benefit innumerable ministers and communities in the entire continent for years to come.”
Thanks is given to God for the important advances that have been made for the future of ministerial education in the Church of the Nazarene. The participation of the representatives of both Regional Committees was key to the success of these regions along with the help of the Rectors of the institutions of theological education in both regions and the efficient work of the team of translators, along with the people who helped with logistics and technical support for the meeting.
Source: South America Region Education.
Translation: Paul Clark