Conference Institutes : LUSENET : A.M.E. Today Discussion : One Thread

In the New York Conference our Ministerial Institute began this past weekend and we are looking forward to a fantastic semester. This is my third year at the institute and I find that it is of great value because it makes you look at your total ministry to see the possibilites. It also provides an advantage for you when you begin seminary. Our Annual Conference is moved to April 24-28th in Queens, NY. Have any of the other Ministerial Institutes begun? If so how do you find it and your instructors? Our Dean is the Rev. Dr. Oneil Mackey, Sr. and he is a fantastic preacher and teacher. In addition I have Rev. James Booker for New Testament Interpretation, James E.F. Lawrence, and Rev. S. Frank Emanuel for Practicum. One of the ideas that a classmate of mines is compiling information for is accredition towards your seminary degree for the Ministerial Institute. This could be extremely beneficial and set a standard for all of the training we receive within the AME Church. I feel we have many great preachers who have also taught in the seminary why not let the trainging we receive be used towards the M.Div or D. Min. Your comments?

-- Anonymous, December 12, 2000


I will be going to annual conference this year for admittance, but I will be starting Seminary in the Spring. I believe in the Philadelphia Conference some of the credits in Seminary do apply to the institute so you can be excused from institute for certain courses.

I will be attending Lutheran Theological Seminary in Philadelphia and they even have denominational courses of which African Methodist Episcopal Polity is one.

It would be great if say Payne Seminary had a distance learning Curriculum and each Institute could offer the MDiv from Payne and other certificate or degree course work for lay members.

It not only would be good to boost enrolment in the Seminary and open the Instituite up and take advantage of the Clergy with Doctorates that could teach courses, but it also would help build up our members in knowledge and also would probably earn money, since I see alot of Seminaries and Bible Schools offering Certificate and degree programs available to lay people who want to do lay ministries.

-- Anonymous, December 12, 2000

It is my understanding that those enrolled in an accredited seminary are excused from Minesterial Institute.

-- Anonymous, December 12, 2000

The Texas Annual Conference will begin its institute in early March. It runs through August or September, with conference convening October 1, 2001. It is five years, and this year, with the arrival of Bishop Young, it is coming a step closer to conformance by requiring entering candidates to have at least 60 hours of college preparation.

I don't have my disciplines handy, but at one point there was synchronization between seminary and institute. For example, candidates for Elder's orders should be completing seminary, and candidates for Deacon's orders should be completing the first year. I was not aware of seminary completion prior to the institute excusing one from the obligation. It was my understanding that our polity is significant enough that any seminarian, or transfer from another denomination, should have at least two years institute. But this is easily checked in the 1996 discipline.

On the other, I am a layman, so I really don't stay on top of those things. :-)

-- Anonymous, December 12, 2000

In the New York Conference if you attend seminary you still must be present for the classes dealing with The Discipline, polity, and History of the AME/Methodist church. When you appear before the board of examiners you must have a minimum number of college credits for the iteneracy because you will receive your Deacon order after your third year: Admissions, 1st Year studies, 2nd year studies. My Presiding Elder District Board wanted all of the information. At the institute those entering the class on admissions had to produce their educational paper as proof of attendance to college for Intenerant and HS Diploma for local.

-- Anonymous, December 12, 2000

If one is enrolled in seminary a significant distance from home it would seem that requiring them to attend Institute would be am undue burden. For instance a member of the New York Conference attending Howard University Divinity School in Washington DC would be hard pressed to attend Institute in Queens NY on a regular basis.

-- Anonymous, December 12, 2000

Those are the exceptions but it is stressed to attend a local AME church as well as if at all possible seek instruction in regard to the AME doctrine. I have met a number of people who have attended school in another state and when questioned on the discipline, articles of religion, ame/methodist history they struggle.

-- Anonymous, December 12, 2000

For those attending seminary away from their home conference it is not uncommon to affiliate with an institutes in the district of their seminary. This is usually expedited through episcopal communication.

-- Anonymous, December 13, 2000

I am entering my 4th year of ministerial studies in the Indiana conference.(Hallelujah!) I am also attending Garrett Evangelical Theological Seminary. We were not given the option of missing our Ministerial Institute classes. None of our instructors were so inclined. The students that attended Payne were excused from attending the classes with the instructors. However, every other month we meet with the Board of Examiniers and they must attend these sessions. These students are still responsible for turning their course work in to their instructors before our Annual conference. Hence the shout of Hallelujah. It has been tough and rigourous. I think that we should still continue to teach about our AME history and methodism. While in seminary you find that so many of the other students from the United Mehtodist, Presbyterian, Lutheran denominations know their church!

-- Anonymous, December 16, 2000

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