ACU Adds Baptist Studies Center
ACU NEWS RELEASE
To help fill a void created by the closing of another seminary in its home city, Abilene Christian University is creating a Baptist Studies Center (BSC) in its Graduate School of Theology (GST).
Dr. Myles Werntz has been named the founding director of the new center. He currently serves as the T.B. Maston Chair of Christian Ethics and Practical Theology at Hardin-Simmons University’s Logsdon Seminary, which announced its closing earlier this year. ACU is affiliated with the Churches of Christ.
“The BSC will provide a natural transition for current Logsdon students to continue their ministry preparation,” said Dr. Tim Sensing, associate dean and director of ACU’s GST. “We are deeply grateful for the opportunity to partner with West Texas Baptist churches that have a long-standing relationship with a regional seminary.”
The center will offer a concentration in Baptist Studies that includes two courses – Baptist History and Baptist Polity – which would pair with the Master of Divinity degree to prepare students for ministry in Baptist churches. Additionally, the center will provide vocational discernment and mentoring to Baptist students and work closely with Baptist ministry partners to facilitate field education placements.
“In the wake of the closing of Logsdon Seminary,” Werntz said on his Facebook page, “I’m beyond grateful for the opportunity to continue the faithful formation of ministers in this new way. In the coming months, I’ll be traveling throughout the region to speak with churches, prospective students, and others wanting to partner with us in the exciting future ahead.”
Werntz is the author and editor of five books in theology and ethics, and has nearly 10 years of experience teaching in Baptist seminaries, as well as established relationships with Baptist organizations and churches around the nation.
“The BSC will broaden the scope of GST’s mission to equip men and women for effective missional leadership for ministry in all its forms and to provide strong academic foundations for theological inquiry,” Sensing said. “We are looking forward to advancing the Kingdom of God together.”
ACU’s GST is accredited by the Commission on Accrediting of the Association of Theological Schools, an organization of more than 250 graduate schools that conduct post-baccalaureate professional and academic degree programs to educate persons for the practice of ministry and for teaching and research in the theological disciplines. The GST offers five approved degree programs: Doctor of Ministry, Master of Divinity, Master of Arts in Christian Ministry, Master of Arts, and Master of Arts in Global Service.
So, instead of promoting New Testament Christianity and calling people from denominationalism, ACU plans to train preachers to teach denominationalism?
A void in Baptist seminaries should be a good thing. Right? I guess not according to ACU.