Each year we host pastors on campus to take courses during summer quarter. In more recent years, Grow in Grace has taken the opportunity to bring summer quarter courses to pastors through online courses and satellite courses in various cities throughout the country. These course offerings allow pastors to participate in some type of continuing education whether on seminary grounds or in their own backyard. However, year after year, many pastors praise summer quarter in Mequon as a wonderful way to grow, study, and be refreshed by coming back to campus to sit in the classroom and study from professors and alongside brothers in ministry. Pastor Brian Wrobel shares, “It was nice for me to take a break [and] slow down a bit at summer quarter at the seminary and devote a week to professional and personal growth through learning, studying, worshiping, reading, and hanging out with others in the ministry.” Once again, this year proved to be yet another successful year. This year, summer quarter in Mequon hosted over 50 pastors and offered 13 on campus courses. While some pastors are pursuing courses to apply to a specific degree (the Sacred Theology Degree (STM)) other pastors enroll in courses to simply pursue a specific area of personal or professional growth. Any for-credit course taken can be applied to the STM degree if a pastor wishes to pursue a full degree.
In order to offer pastors a greater variety of courses to choose from, a few courses this year were led by adjunct professors. By using adjunct professors, we are not only expanding the courses we offer, but we are able to tap into the expertise of those who are working in a particular area of pastoral ministry. One course that was particularly well received was Evangelism as Process: From Prospect Management through Assimilation taught by adjunct professor Pastor Mike Hintz, synod director for the Commission on Evangelism at the Center for Mission and Ministry. His course focused on the structure and process of congregational evangelism. One pastor-student, Paul Jenkins shares, “Evangelism as Process helped me see new ideas and sort through familiar concepts that my congregation will be able to use to reach new souls in a changing society with the gospel.”
In the hope of making for-credit courses more readily available to pastors, Grow in Grace is putting final touches on a plan that would offer regular satellite courses in the 11 synodical districts beyond the district in which the seminary is located. While the plan has not yet been finalized, at present it would call for regular on-campus summer quarter to be offered only in even number years (beginning in 2018) while satellites in the other 11 districts would be offered in the odd number years (beginning in 2019).
With summer quarter courses coming to a close, fall online courses and various satellite courses are still open for enrollment. View all upcoming courses offered through Grow in Grace or request a course to come to an area near you.