Editor’s Introduction -- By: David W. Baker

Journal: Ashland Theological Journal
Volume: ATJ 35:0 (NA 2003)
Article: Editor’s Introduction
Author: David W. Baker

Editor’s Introduction

David W. Baker

It is my pleasure once again to present to you the fruit of some of the labors being undertaken at Ashland Theological Seminary by faculty, students, and alumni. In August of 2003, the faculty met for a pre-term retreat, and the topic of discussion was ‘Evangelicalism’. Ashland as an institution claims a position in that theological and sociological camp, but some among the faculty were asking what is meant by the term, and how it fits into our own self-definition. Arising from that discussion is the article by William Payne, whose interest was piqued at that, his first ATS retreat, to explore the relationship between the term ‘Evangelical’ and the African-American community.

Andrew Hamilton, an ATS alumnus and adjunct instructor, takes a look at another group among evangelicalism, namely the Brethren, the founders of the Seminary. He explores their early hermeneutic. Another historical study by an alumnus, Jeffrey Kahl, looks at a different concern, the Puritans, who played such an important role in American church history. He looks at them specifically through the lens of leadership. Leadership in its contemporary application to the church and its pastors is the picked up by Richard Parrott. He highlights the importance of the nurture of the pastor’s inner being before there can be any meaningful outward functioning. One aspect which is important to evangelicalism is the importance of Scripture, and of doctrine derived from it. An article by Mark Hamilton highlights the importance of contending for the faith as articulated by C. S. Lewis. The articles conclude with a review by Luke L. Keefer of several volumes from a series on early and contemporary church history, again tying together our past and our present.

Past and present were tied together over the last year at the Seminary as well, with the retirement of two of our number, Dr Douglas Little and Dr Ronald Sprunger, whom we wish well. We are also joined by several new colleagues: ATS alumna Dr Elaine Heath as Director of the Doctor of Ministry Program, Dr John Byron as Instructor in New Testament, Dr David Mann as of Associate Professor of Counseling (starting in January, 2004), and Anthony Donofrio as Assistant professor of Counseling (starting in the fall of 2004). Robert Rosa has been promoted to the position of Dean of Student Development, and two recruiters have joined his staff, Cara Selan and Curtis Stein.

Curricular changes also continue apace, especially in the Doctor of Ministry program and the Sandberg Leadership Center. Ashland is honored to be the recipient of a Lilly grant which will establish a program called “Pastors of Excellence.” This program will directly impact more than 100 churches over the next three years, and is under the direction of Dr. Richard Parrott. Another exciting new ve...

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