Tim Sensing's Archive

On the Training of Ministers

by   |  01.09.18  |  ACU, Alumni, Hope, Ministry, Mission of God, Students, Theology

On the Training of Ministers

Pete Ward’s new book Introducing Practical Theology: Mission, Ministry, and the Life of the Church (Baker Academic, 2017), emphasizes throughout the importance of the church and the lived experience of the community of faith. Ward describes well two conversations that I often have with prospective students and mid-career ministers. First, why do people desire to begin theological studies? Many simply have an affinity for knowing more about their faith. They see more rigorous engagement with the Bible, Church History, Theology, and Ministerial Practice will make a difference in their personal growth and congregation’s well being. He states, “The desire to know more often comes out of a realization that we do not know enough. It is not at all unusual for practice to get ahead of theory. This could be a simple situation—for instance, being asked to lead a group study on a particular issue” (22). He goes on to describe that the resources often accessible are the first steps in becoming a theologically reflective practitioner. However, there comes a time when maybe a crisis or a heavy issue emerges that cannot be engaged in faithfully without formal and professional training. He continues, “This sense of a gap in knowledge can become particularly acute when someone, for example, has trained as a community activist or as a youth worker and his or her practice seems to have developed in ways that no longer fit with previous theological understanding. This experience is actually common, and it is one of the main reasons ministers and others who are professionally engaged in different kinds of ministry want to return to academic institutions to study theology, and practical theology in particular” (23).

The second conversation Ward describes as an ongoing and “normal Christian experience.” He states,

Practitioners often find that they have lost their theological bearings. Losing a theological orientation is not quite the same as losing faith. The normal pattern is that practitioners continue to find their personal faith to be meaningful and helpful, and God is still a reality in their lives. At the same time, they start to become more hazy about how this personal faith connects to what they do. … It is like taking an inflatable raft out onto the water. Drifting with the current seems pleasant, but after a while you can find yourself quite far from where you are meant to be. Practical theology is one of the ways that practitioners can look up from where their professional ministry has taken them and find ways to reorient themselves (23).

Ward concludes the chapter describing the possible reasons why ministers find themselves adrift. The gap between theory and practice (long ago described by Aristotle but keenly felt by every generation since), the ever-shifting contexts in society, the overwhelming need of people, globalization, and the complexity of the ministerial task often deflate one’s ministerial aspirations and capacities. While not the only reason, the gap ministers feel between their aspirations and their practices is why many return to school to pursue the Doctor of Ministry degree.

The dual services of the Graduate School of Theology and the Siburt Institute represent two facets of ACU’s desire to serve churches. I believe it is the responsibility of the church (not the school) to raise up the next generation of leaders. The school partners with churches by providing theological training to those identified as “called” to serve the people of God. The Siburt Institute provides resources for ministers and congregations who serve on behalf of God for the sake of the world. More »

GST Faculty Update 2017

by   |  10.11.17  |  ACU, Church, Ministry

I am continually amazed how our GST faculty engage in local church ministry. Of course, there are the obvious activities that everyone sees including church consultations and seminars, interim ministries, Elderlink, writing curriculum, and publishing articles and books that serve the life of the church. Yet, there are also those week-to-week engagements with local churches working as elders, Bible class teachers, and ministry leaders. For example, Fred Aquino can be found most Sunday mornings preaching at the Avenue B Church of Christ in Ballinger. Chris Flanders is often found these days preaching at the Maryneal Church of Christ. Mindi Thompson is a frequent Bible adult class teacher at the Highland Church of Christ in Abilene. And the list continues.

For the past four years, Jeff and Linda Childers were High School Huddle leaders for the Highland Church of Christ. Jeff recently told me, “Having the same batch of teenagers into our home every week during their high school years has been a highlight. From the silly to the sublime and the very serious, my wife Linda and I have been privileged to walk alongside an extraordinary group of youngsters on their journey into young adulthood.”

Mark Hamilton talked with me about his work as an elder at University Church of Christ. While being an elder at a church has many demands, he shared with me one part of the work he found especially joyful.  “Samjung and I have served with the campus ministry at UCC, spending a lot of time with students, mentoring some, teaching as needed, and trying to encourage our various campus ministers. We met with those students every Sunday evening for over five years. Last year was a transitional year for us as we stepped back from campus ministry (though we ran a small group chapel on campus on Thursdays for about a dozen UCC students and their friends).  We transitioned to the 20-somethings group, which Bradley Steele [GST alum] is leading.”

I appreciate working with world-class scholars. Spending time with them on a weekly basis for twenty years has shaped my thinking about God and the church in profound ways. More importantly, I am blessed to watch how they integrate the life of the mind with their daily walk with God and the church. I hear them pray and watch them pastor others. I am a witness to how my fellow GST faculty commit themselves to academic pursuits and the vocation of scholarship as a service to the church. How much more so is that service blessed as they also serve the church with their hearts and hands.

Peace,

Tim Sensing More »

Student Spotlight- Morgan DeBoer

by   |  10.09.17  |  ACU, College of Biblical Studies, Students

Morgan DeBoer is beginning her first semester studies at ACU’s Graduate School of Theology, pursuing master degrees in both Christian Ministry (MACM) and in Social Work (MSSW). She is originally from Council Bluffs, Iowa and graduated from York College, where she earned an undergrad degree in English.

Where you have seen God working recently?

I had not considered a formal degree in theology or ministry until recently, so the decision to begin this program was in several ways an uncertain one. But now that I am here, and immersed in my classes, I know that there is no place I would rather be, and nothing in the world I would rather be learning about. So I can’t help but wonder how God may have been at work this past year in ways I didn’t understand.

What made you decide to do a MACM & MSSW? 

There are some fairly broken contexts that I wanted to serve in, but I felt that I wouldn’t be truly equipped to do so without deeper training in discipleship, and a deeper understanding of God. So when I saw that ACU offered both a MACM and a MSSW degree, I was interested in how that might allow God to mold both my heart, and my skillset. More »

GST Author Highlight

by   |  10.09.17  |  ACU, Alumni, Bible, Church, College of Biblical Studies, Ministry, Professors, Theology

The Graduate School of Theology has many gifted authors who are using their talents to minister to the church & the world. Below are four books that have recently been published by either GST faculty or alumni. We hope they will be an inspiration to you.

 

Meditations for the Lone Traveler written by Mark Hamilton

“In writing this book, I wanted to speak to those who feel alone in their faith. Doubt is not the opposite of faith. Faith is not purely intellectual, but comprehensive in its impact on life. In the pursuit of faith, we are not alone.”

These twenty-two meditations on the songs, prayers, and stories of the Bible invite readers to imagine themselves as part of a world in which human beings may fully live into their sufferings and joys as part of a vibrant while still critically searching faith in God. Here we see prophets and  poets, as well as ordinary men and women, embrace the realities of life without apology or fear. For more information, click here. More »

The Carmichael-Walling Lectures-2017

by   |  10.09.17  |  Announcements, Church, Theology

 

 

 

 

The 2017 Carmichael-Walling Lectures will take place on Thursday, November 9. Our lecturer will be Dr. Mark Goodacre, Professor of New Testament and Christian Origins at Duke University.“How Well Do They Know Each Other?”

Dr. Goodacre will speak on the relationship between John and the other New Testament Gospels. The first lecture, entitled John’s Dramatic Transformation of the Synoptics, deals with John’s knowledge of the Synoptic Gospels as revealed in the way he dramatizes their narratives. In John’s Christological Transformation of the Synoptics, Dr. Goodacre addresses the understated similarities in the Christology of the Synoptic Gospels and that of the Gospel of John. In short, they know one another better than some interpreters of the New Testament have allowed. More »

Summit Review 2017

by   |  10.06.17  |  ACU, Bible, Church, Ministry, Theology

ACU Summit 2017, “Ancient Scripture, Future Church: The Choices We Make and the God We Serve,”  focused on Deuteronomy, the ways this ancient text informs the future of the church and the choices we make as we strive to serve God. Approximately twenty eight GST faculty, staff, current students, and alumni spoke at this year’s Summit lecture series! People traveled from all over the world to attend the lectures and to a partake in many valuable conversations. Below are four all day tracks where GST faculty, staff, students or alumni spoke about throughout the week.

 

Ancient- Future Bible:

The Word of God is living and active, and it has been so for millennia. The rich heritage we have from our predecessors in the faith, from manuscripts to art and from reflection to action, can be a profound source of spiritual strength today. This track, hosted by Curt Niccum, empowers Christians to engage God and his creation in new ways by going back to the future. Those who spoke on this topic were Wendell Willis, Jeff Childers, Glenn Pemberton, David Kneip and Curt Niccum. Our speakers shed light on topic such as recovering the Words of Jesus, interpreting the text about Jonah and the war over women in the Word.

Congregational Leadership:

More »

Doctor of Ministry Graduates Present at National Conference

by   |  04.26.17  |  ACU, Alumni

The Academy of Religious Leadership is an international academic guild of professors, scholars, and practitioners who gather for an annual conference each spring to read papers, interact about what is new in the field of leadership, and deepen theological reflection and innovative theory for the sake of healthy churches and religious organizations. This spring’s conference, held April 20-22 in a downtown hotel in Chicago, also witnessed a rather significant gathering of alumni from Abilene Christian University’s Doctor of Ministry (D.Min.) program.

Dr. Carson Reed (’95), the director of ACU’s D.Min. program is also on the board of the Academy for Religious Leadership. Some months ago, when a new initiative was announced to reach out to various Doctor of Ministry programs and Doctor of Philosophy programs in leadership with a call for papers from recent graduates, Dr. Reed submitted about a dozen recent graduates from ACU’s program. The call for papers went out and out of the submissions received, a committee accepted five papers from ACU graduates—along with past students from places like Duke University, Fuller Seminary, Luther Seminary, Trinity Evangelical, Seattle University, and TCU. No other program had as many representatives among the 20 papers presented.

Pictured left to right are Dr. Carson Reed, Dr. Jimmy Hensley (’16), Dr. Stephen Shaffer (’12), Dr. Ben Pickett (’13), Dr. Randall Carr (’15), and Dr. Jason Locke (’11).

Each of them had a presentation that came out of their doctoral project/thesis. Of particular import is that every presentation demonstrated thoughtful theological and theoretical reflection that led to specific ministerial intervention and action.

In additional news, Reed was elected to serve as a co-editor for the Academy’s peer-reviewed journal, the Journal of Religious Leadership. Serving with Dr. Stephen Sprinkle of TCU’s Brite Divinity School, Reed and Sprinkle begin their work with the fall edition of the journal.

Errett Award

by   |  03.20.17  |  Announcements

Abilene Christian University Student Wins Isaac Errett Award

Bradley Steele of Abilene Christian University provided the winning paper for the 2017 competition titled: “The Lord’s Supper in the Thought of Barton Stone and Alexander Campbell.” Bradley will present his paper at a parallel session during the 2017 SCJ Conference at Johnson University Tennessee. The $250 prize, provided by the Disciples of Christ Historical Society, will be presented to Bradley at the conference by the directors of the competition, Newell Williams of Brite Divinity School and Doug Foster of Abilene Christian University.

Eucharist and Ecclesiology: Essays in Honor of Dr. Everett Ferguson

by   |  02.23.17  |  Announcements

You’re invited to the special release of the new book Eucharist and Ecclesiology: Essays in Honor of Dr. Everett Ferguson at 7 p.m. TuesdayMarch 7, presented by ACU’s Center for the Study of Ancient Texts.

This robust collection of essays was gathered from a 2013 event on ACU’s campus in which eminent scholars from different religious traditions gathered to honor world-renowned specialist in Early Christianity and retired ACU professor, Dr. Everett Ferguson.

CSART is proud to celebrate the publication of this book in a special event, featuring responses by Ferguson and the book’s editor, Dr. Wendell Willis, professor of Bible, missions and ministry.

Attendees will have the opportunity to purchase the book and have it signed by both Willis and Ferguson at a reception afterward.

We hope to see you there!

Dr. Jeff Childers
Director, Center for the Study of Ancient Religious Texts More »

Aquinas Colloquium

by   |  02.20.17  |  Announcements

Aquino invited to give a keynote lecture at Oxford University

Dr. Frederick Aquino of the Graduate School of Theology at ACU has been invited to give a keynote lecture at the Aquinas Colloquium, “Aquinas and Newman on Conscience” (see resource here).

The colloquium will take place on March 4, 2017 at Blackfriars Hall, Oxford. It will launch the joint research project of the Aquinas and the Las Casas institutes: Human Nature & Dignity: Resources for the 21st Century. In this colloquium, the speakers will compare and contrast the thought of Thomas Aquinas and John Henry Newman on the nature of conscience and some of its key facets (e.g., rights; responsibilities) that the church and state must foster.

Aquino’s keynote lecture will focus on Newman’s account of conscience while exploring the relevance of his thought for the joint research project on human nature and dignity.

The Association of Theological School Reaffirms GST’s Accreditation

by   |  02.20.17  |  Announcements

On February 15, 2017, ATS reaffirmed the accreditation of Abilene Christian University Graduate School of Theology for a period of ten years (fall 2026). The reaffirmation also includes the GST’s residency programs in Croatia, Ghana, Swaziland, and Addison. ATS additionally granted approval to offer comprehensive distance education through ACU-Dallas.

The GST faculty were affirmed to maintain the exemplary level of faculty scholarship that was evident in their extensive research and writing. ATS noted the generous scholarships that enhanced the student’s experience at ACU resulting in a graduate theological education that is very affordable for an increasing number of students.

Finding a Voice for Chrysostom

by   |  02.13.17  |  Announcements

Dr. Jeff Childers of the Graduate School of Theology has been invited to present research at Università Tre in Rome at the conference, “Tradurre Tradire Tramandare—Translate Mislead Transmit: The Greek Fathers Between Latin Western and Syriac Eastern Worlds” (20-21 February 2017). As a guest of the university, Professor Childers will present research on the topic, “Finding a Voice for Chrysostom: the Syriac Versions of a Greek Preacher.” Childers explains, “Chrysostom was the most popular preacher in the ancient church. He wrote in Greek, but his interpretations of scripture were translated into Syriac very early. My research shows how Syriac translators naturalized the Greek orator into a ‘native’ semitic speaker through the art of translation.”

Interfaith Retreat

by   |  01.24.17  |  Interfaith Dialog

Every January the Multi-Cultural Alliance (www.mcatexas.com) sponsors an interfaith retreat that invites Jewish, Christian, and Muslim students into conversations. This year’s retreat met at the Prothro Center, Lake Texoma, Texas. Two GST students and one faculty person attended the retreat. Below is a reflection from MA student, Joshua Gorenflo.

Interfaith Retreat Reflection

There is a verse in the Quran which reads, ‘Whichever way you turn, there is the Face of God.’ (2:115) Beautiful words by any sacred standard. But there is an added weight to them as I look around this room at the 45 seminary students of varying Jewish, Muslim, and Christian stripes, intermingled in laughter and conversation and respect. The skirt has been lifted on my innocuous practice of segregating those who are categorically ‘other’ and I’ve been found wanting.

I want to expose all the areas of my heart that insist on de-humanizing those whom my God calls his children. That they believe differently than I is no longer a compelling reason to perpetuate hatred under the guise of being obedient to the God who created us diverse and called it very good.

I want to be formed by the words ‘love thy neighbor,’ not conform them to my own weak standard. Distancing myself from injustice to keep my hands clean, to not rock the boat, is not love. Love is investment. Love is when tears are shed and hearts pound with audible anxiety and mercy bleeds from open wounds while voices crackle out insistently that there is no ‘them,’ only ‘us’ and the Divine tenderly holding us together.

I want more safe spaces to have these conversations with one another not simply about one another. I can’t imagine what the practice of coming together and sharing ourselves with any sort of regularity would do to form us into a people who listen, really listen, to one another. It might just allow for the possibility of hearing our own hurts and hopes in voices of a different accent. More »

CSART Presents

by   |  01.20.17  |  Announcements, Bible, CSART

Jonah: Interpreted, Reinterpreted, and Interred

How a small biblical story became prominent in early Christian art

You are invited to join us on the campus of Abilene Christian University for the presentation: “Jonah—Interpreted, Reinterpreted, and Interred.” This lecture will explore how a small biblical story became prominent in the early Christian art of the ancient Catacombs and elsewhere.

The lecture will take place at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 7, in ACU’s Chapel on the Hill, at the Onstead-Packer Biblical Studies Building. Dr. Wendell Willis, longtime New Testament professor in ACU’s Department of Bible, Missions, and Ministry, will be the speaker.

CSART

by   |  11.06.16  |  Announcements, Bible, St. Catherine's

Local news highlighted the Carmichael-Walling Lectures saying,

Abilene Christian University celebrated the inauguration of the Center for the Study of Ancient Religions Texts, or CSART on Thursday. The center strives to inspire students and help them conduct research alongside established scholars. On Thursday, manuscripts that were written as long as 1700 years ago were featured.

Read more here.

Student Spotlight

by   |  10.17.16  |  Students

Zane Witcher is a first year GST residential student, was recently highlighted in myACU News. The article begins,

“Zane Witcher delivered his first sermon when he was 14 years old. His grandparents attended a small church of 20 people, and they needed a preacher for a Sunday service. He said that first sermon was “rough,” but soon not only his grandparents but other churches were asking him to preach.”  Read the full story here.

Carmichael-Walling Lectures

by   |  10.07.16  |  ACU, Announcements

You are invited to join us for the inauguration of ACU’s Center for the Study of Ancient Religious Texts and the 30th annual Carmichael-Walling Lectures at Abilene Christian University on Thursday, Nov. 3.

Father Justin of Sinai will give the Carmichael-Walling Lectures –Encounters in the Desert: Holy Books and Sacred Texts – as part of an inaugural celebration featuring special events, distinguished speakers, and an opportunity to see rare book and manuscript treasures.

Schedule: 

  • 10 a.m.: Father Justin (St. Catharine’s Monastery) — “Illustrating the Ladder of Divine Ascent: An Illuminated Manuscript of a Spiritual Classic (Sinai Greek 418)”
  • 1 p.m.: Dr. Mark Hamilton (Abilene Christian University) — “Who’s Afraid of Ancient Texts? Rediscovering Old Words for a New Era”
  • 2 p.m.: “Texts as Teachers: Reports on Current Scholarship at ACU” (CSART researchers)
  • 4 p.m.: Father Justin, “Newly Recovered Manuscripts of the Scriptures from Saint Catherine’s Monastery, Sinai”
  • 7 p.m.: Father Justin, “‘For Moses Wrote of Me’: Reflections From Mount Sinai”
  • 8 p.m.: CSART reception

In collaboration with the Museum of the Bible and the Special Collections and Archives of ACU’s Brown Library, a select number of rare books and ancient manuscripts will be on display.

Father Justin (pictured at left, top) is librarian in the Monastery of St. Catharine at Mount Sinai, Egypt, one of the oldest Christian institutions in the world. He studies and cares for some of the most important manuscripts and artifacts in existence anywhere.

Mark Hamilton (pictured at left, bottom) serves as the Onstead Professor of Biblical Studies at Abilene Christian University. He is the author or editor of numerous books and articles focusing on Israelite conceptions of society within their ancient Near Eastern context, as well as on biblical theology.

Lectures are free, open to the public and will take place in the Onstead-Packer Biblical Studies Building on ACU’s campus. For more information, contact Jeff Childers at childersj@acu.edu. More »

Our Spiritual Worship

by   |  10.05.16  |  Chapel

Our Spiritual Worship

ACU Graduate Chapel – 9/14/16

Judy Siburt

In 1967 my husband, Charles Siburt, and I came to ACU for graduate school to prepare for ministry to the church. I earned a Masters in Education/ School Counseling and Charlie an M.Div. While here I taught school, and Charlie preached in Lingleville over by Stephenville. We were rich students….we had no idea how rich our time at ACU truly was and how it would change our lives forever. We had the experience of studying under the likes of: Lemoine Lewis, Abraham Malherbe, Everett Ferguson, Carl Spain, Tom Olbricht, John Willis and others.

New worlds opened to us. We were taught how to think, how to learn, and how to develop the life of the mind. It allowed us to make lifelong relationships with people who shared our calling, our values, and our commitment to ministry. We began to form a “good” theology that included knowing and enjoying God and training ourselves so the communities where we would contribute would flourish.

You students are answering the same call to ministry we responded to almost 50 years ago. You are learning what it means to truly live out spiritual worship. You get to talk about God. You are challenged to learn from others who have thought about God, read about God, and spoken about God over the centuries. You get to dialogue daily with contemporaries who also have committed to live out God’s good and pleasing will for their lives.

As one who has experienced this process as the wife and ministry partner of the late Charles Siburt, as one who has raised two sons who both sat where you are today as M.Div. students, I can assure you the process of “renewing your minds,” More »

A Word of Exhortation

by   |  08.24.16  |  Chapel

A Word of Exhortation

Hebrews 13

Call to Worship

Welcome to Grad Chapel. Our text today, for those of you who grew up like I did, always brings a smile to my face. I grew up at church. My grandfather was an elder, my father was an elder, my mother was a Bible school teacher four quarters out of four both Wednesday nights and Sunday mornings. I grew up in a home where babysitters came to my house so that my parents could go to Cottage Meetings to watch filmstrips. I started preaching when I was 13. Anytime I had a sermon and the preacher okayed the message, I could preach on Sunday nights at Elmwood Avenue Church of Christ in Lafayette Indiana. So if you grew up like I did, and I know some of you didn’t, there emerges insider language. I’ve used quite a bit of insider language already. Our text today makes us insiders smile for it is the text about entertaining angels in their underwear. And for a little kid, an angel wearing boxers or briefs is funny.

  • I didn’t grow up where the insider language, “our text for today,” referred to a lectionary, a set of Sunday readings laid out not only for your church but also for all the churches that embraced the Christian Year as its liturgical calendar.
  • Continuing for the fourth year, Grad Chapel is going to follow the lectionary in order to provide us a rhythm that for all of you who come regularly to this place through the academic year can worship our God and in the words of last Sunday’s lectionary text you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to myriads of angels in festal gathering, and to the assembly of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven.
  • The Lectionary does not follow the academic year. The academic year begins towards the end of the Christian Year, during the season of Pentecost, Ordinary Time of Year C, Proper 17. And our text for this coming Sunday is Hebrews 13.
  • Our text exhorts us with “a word of exhortation” to welcome you here in mutual love, for who knows, there might be angels among us… And they might be wearing their underwear.

Message

22 I appeal to you, brothers and sisters, bear with my word of exhortation, for I have written to you briefly.

  1. “A Word of Exhortation” – it would not be Hebrews if we did not go back to the OT for some examples. The Deuteronomist places Moses with his GPS saying, “You are Here.” The little blinking dots says, “You are on the border between here and there and before you go forward, let’s look back to where and why you’ve been.” And Moses offers words of exhortation to the camp of Israel, words of memory and hope. Throughout the Deuteronomic history, words of exhortations, preaching, carries the story forward. Words that not only remind God’s people of God’s promises and mighty acts, but also words of warning, words of hope, and words of possibilities. Hebrews 13 reminds me of Moses and the Children of Israel who lived in the safety of a camp, protected by community and family, and who were exhorted to embrace the challenges and opportunities before them.
  2. And the preacher in Hebrews replicates that tradition with his word of exhortation saying, “Hold on to your faith in Jesus, the author, pioneer, and perfecter of our faith.” And the preacher here makes an allusion, 10 We have an altar from which those who officiate in the tent have no right to eat. 11 For the bodies of those animals whose blood is brought into the sanctuary by the high priest as a sacrifice for sin are burned outside the camp. 12 Therefore Jesus also suffered outside the city gate in order to sanctify the people by his own blood. 13 Let us then go to him outside the camp and bear the abuse he endured. 14 For here we have no lasting city, but we are looking for the city that is to come. And those who know the insider language know that “going outside the camp” is an exhortation that calls them to a different kind of ministry, a cruciformed ministry, a ministry of challenge and possibility. Words that call them, in his words, “torture.”
  3. And, as all good preachers do, this preacher gives us a list of concrete expressions of those challenges and possibilities. Listen again to his list…

Let mutual love continue. Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by doing that some have entertained angels unaware. Remember those who are in prison, as though you were in prison with them; those who are being tortured, as though you yourselves were being tortured. Let marriage be held in honor by all, and let the marriage bed be kept undefiled; for God will judge fornicators and adulterers. Keep your lives free from the love of money, and be content with what you have; for he has said, “I will never leave you or forsake you.” So we can say with confidence,

“The Lord is my helper;
I will not be afraid.
What can anyone do to me?”

Remember your leaders, those who spoke the word of God to you; consider the outcome of their way of life, and imitate their faith. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.

This preacher chooses this list because these challenges and possibilities connect to the audience’s immediate context. As you begin this academic year, may this old list of challenges and opportunities guide you. Let this word be a word of exhortation. More »

Reconciliation Reconsidered

by   |  08.12.16  |  Announcements, Society

Dr. Jerry Taylor and Dr. Doug Foster recently contributed to Reconciliation Reconsidered, a new book from ACU Press addressing the conversation of race in Churches of Christ. Read an excerpt from Taylor’s chapter, “Well Water,” on the ACU Press blog.

Reconciliation Takes Time.

A broad racial divide mars Churches of Christ, and courageous leaders from across the United States have joined together to listen to one another. Rather than adopt a posture of resignation, they have met for honest, God-honoring conversation.

In Reconciliation Reconsidered, Tanya Brice pulls together the early fruit she has gleaned from this ongoing conversation about racial reconciliation. Learn about yourself in the context of community as you explore these key ideas:

  • Exercise truth-telling: it’s what is needed before any reconciliation can happen
  • Discover how race relations are not as simple as you think
  • Challenge your stereotypes
  • Understand the meaning of current events like the Ferguson shooting in fresh ways
  • Revisit Christ’s teachings with a careful eye toward discipleship and love of your neighbor

Each chapter concludes with discussion questions that can help you and others navigate this perplexing and difficult topic.

New Publication

by   |  07.31.16  |  Announcements

This summer Dr. Jeff Childers of the Graduate School of Theology published a translation and study of Jacob of Sarug’s Homilies on Praise at Table (Texts from Christian Late Antiquity 46; Gorgias Press, 2016).

ACU Today

by   |  04.02.16  |  Uncategorized

Recently, ACU Today highlighted the wonderful work of Dr. Mark Hamilton. You can read more here.

In the attached article you will find a direct link to the complete article in ACU Today that includes beautiful photos. Later in that same issue you can read about the good work of the Siburt Institute in an article entitled Flock Management (it begins on page 48).

For a direct link to ACU Today go here. (back to page 10 or forward to page 48 respectively).

Evans Ngoge

by   |  03.29.16  |  Students

The Graduate School of Theology has a long history of service to churches and ministries in Africa. Recently, Abilene’s local news highlighted the work of Evans Ngoge in their Know Your Neighbor section. Read the online post here.

Student Spotlight

by   |  02.23.16  |  Uncategorized

Recently, ACU highlighted the good work of Justin Whiteley. Read more about Justin here.

New Publication by James Thompson

by   |  02.22.16  |  Announcements

Following his excellent commentary on Hebrews in the Paidea series, James Thompson’s forthcoming commentary on Philippians in the same series is now available for pre-order. Philippians and Philemon by James Thompson and Bruce Longenecker, Paideia: Commentaries on the New Testament, is scheduled for and August 2016 release by Baker Academic.

From the publisher: “Two respected senior New Testament scholars examine cultural context and theological meaning in Philippians and Philemon in this addition to the well-received Paideia series. Paideia commentaries explore how New Testament texts form Christian readers by attending to the ancient narrative and rhetorical strategies the text employs, showing how the text shapes theological convictions and moral habits, and making judicious use of maps, photos, and sidebars in a reader-friendly format. Students, pastors, and other readers will appreciate the historical, literary, and theological insights offered in this practical commentary.”

Philippians and Philemon is a welcome addition to Thompson’s other contributions to Pauline scholarship. His other books include the trilogy Pastoral Ministry according to Paul, Moral Formation according to Paul, and The Church according to Paul. 

Thompson is scholar in residence at the Graduate School of Theology and is currently working on a Pauline theology.

Aquino on the Move

by   |  02.17.16  |  Theology

Aquino Gives a Lecture and Leads a Seminar at the University of St. Thomas (MN)

Dr. Frederick Aquino (Graduate School of Theology) gave a public lecture at the University of St. Thomas (MN; www.stthomas.edu/theology/events/eventarchive/interdisciplinary-conversations-dr-aquino.html). The lecture drew from his book, An Integrative Habit of Mind (Northern Illinois University Press), and focused on the relevance of John Henry Newman for tackling the question of what it means to pursue wisdom in an information age. It was co-sponsored by the Center for Philosophy of Religion at the University of Notre Dame, College of Arts and Sciences, and the Aquinas Chair.

He also led a faculty seminar on spiritual perception. Dr. Mark Spencer and Dr. Paul Gavrilyuk (University of St. Thomas) co-organized an interdisciplinary faculty seminar funded by an external cluster grant from the Templeton Foundation via the University of Notre Dame. One outcome of the seminar will be a research project in which Dr. Aquino will co-direct (with Paul Gavrilyuk) an international Spiritual Senses Symposium and co-edit a related volume of essays under the working title, Sensing Things Divine: Toward a Constructive Account of Spiritual Perception.

 

Aquino Co-edits a book on Newman with Oxford University Press

 Dr. Frederick Aquino (Graduate School of Theology) published (with Dr. Benjamin King, The School of Theology, University of the South) Receptions of Newman (Oxford University Press, 2015; http://ukcatalogue.oup.com/product/9780199687589.do ). In this collection of essays, scholars from across the disciplines of theology, philosophy, education, and history examine the different ways in which John Henry Newman has been interpreted. Some of the essays attempt to rescue Newman from his opponents then and now. Others seek to save him from his rescuers, clearing away misinterpretations so that Newman’s works may be encountered afresh. All the essays show why Newman’s ideas about religion were so important in the past and continue to inform the present. More »

Tim Sensing's Comment Archive

  1. Ron,
    It was good to see you at CSC in Nashville. Thank you for the kind words about the book.

  2. Thank you for the greeting. May God bless your work in Sweden.
    Tim

  3. Thanks for the comment. We all have gaps in our lives. Some of those gaps are more significant than others. Minor gaps leave some people with gapping holes in their lives while for others, major tragedies are mediated with grace. How one views God and God’s activity in their lives makes a difference. Beholding God as the author of resurrection enables us to activate the gospel in our lives.

  4. Tim Sensing on Contextual Theology
    9:07 am, 09.07.13

    Thanks. The book is now out. ACU Press released it June 6, 2013. Blessings on your work. Tim

  5. Thanks Brian. Dr. Siburt’s influence will continue to affect us all in so many wonderful ways.