Commissions

Theological News Jan 2001 Vol 30 No 1

01.09.2001

Editor: Dr. David Parker

Excerpts from this issue

A Message from Dr Rolf Hille, Chair, Theological Commission

I would like to warmly welcome you to the first edition of the Theological News that will again appear beginning in 2001 as a regular quarterly publication. We are very pleased to announce that Dr. David Parker, board member of the Theological Commission (TC) of the WEF, has taken over the editorial responsibilities for this informative publication. At the same time we would like to apologize to our readers who waited in vain for an issue of our journal in the year 2000. We regret that, because of some technical problems and personnel overload, it was not possible to publish the TN regularly last year.

Still, as TC chairman, I would like now to present to you what we hope to accomplish in our work in the future. We certainly do not intend to simply add to the many diverse theological societies and commissions already existent at the national and regional level. Rather, we would like to create a network with which the different existent theological organizations can better cooperate. Using its own structures the TC would like to form a dialogue and collaboration forum that reports on new developments in evangelical theology, especially in the areas of teaching and research. Thereby, we wish to make possible the exchange of ideas on burning theological issues within very specific cultural and geographical contexts that could help the Commission contribute also to finding solutions to certain major problems. This would allow theologians in a specific context to recognize that similar issues have come up in another part of the worldwide Church of Jesus Christ where possible a solution has been found which could then be applied to an area's own difficulties simply in a modified way.

As a theological commission, we would like to make use of the following tools to this goal of worldwide cooperation of evangelical theologians:

  1. Promotion of the exchange of information through the TN quarterly publication. Theological articles of more depth and detail we will publish in our second quarterly, the Evangelical Review of Theology (ERT). ERT issues from the past 24 years have now been available on CD-ROM since August 2000 when the CD premiered at the Amsterdam Congress on World Evangelism and may be ordered from our Executive Director, Dr. Jim Stamoolis. In addition, we wish to continue publishing, as we have often done in the past, separate monographs on individual topics and issues. And, of course, we would also like to spur stronger e-mail correspondence and exchange of ideas through the Internet between evangelical theologians.
  2. Along with this we aim to structure our study units around the classical theological disciplines of Old Testament studies, New Testament studies, church history, systematic theology, practical theology, etc. Here in the German Work Group for Evangelical Theology, we have had good experiences with these kinds of cooperative work groups in the different theological disciplines.
  3. For current interdisciplinary topics we will set up task forces to accomplish work within a specific time limit, for example, on the topics of ecology, inter-religious dialogue and missions, medical ethics, and forms of Christian spirituality.
  4. Finally, international conferences will also continue to be held, and we intend to establish a core group of the Theological Commission including five representatives from each continent. This core group will participate in the different conferences of the regional theological conferences in the form of joint ventures and work out joint conference programs with them. A first project of this type is planned for August 2002 between the Theological Commission and the Fellowship of European Theologians (FEET).

We would be very happy to learn of your interest and even willingness to cooperate in the one or the other part of our program. Please let us know and feel free to write us.

I would especially ask you to send news from your church and region to the TN editor such as, for example, information on conferences you are attending, and we also welcome information on theological publications (especially journals) as well as other theological projects in which study groups are active in your area of expertise. We would also be glad to get relevant personal news. Please inform Dr. David Parker of news you feel is relevant to the international fellowship of TN readers from the evangelical world. Theological publications in English may also be sent directly to Dr. Parker for possible use in the TN. If you wish to send in publications in other languages, it would be helpful if you could provide short summaries of articles in English translation.

I am very much looking forward to contacting you, our readers, and wish you God's richest blessings in the New Year!

Yours in Christ,
Dr. Rolf Hille

Theological Education in the 21st Century: 12th ICETE Consultation

More than sixty people from around the world registered for the 12th International Consultation for Theological Educators held 11-15 September 2000 at All Nations Christian College, Ware, England. It was sponsored by the International Council for Evangelical Theological Education (ICETE) and had as its theme, Theological Education in the 21st Century: Critical Challenges/Critical Opportunities .

The keynote address ICETE - Vision to be Embraced was delivered by the Director, Dr Dieumeme Nöelliste of Jamaica, in which he painted a confident picture of the potential for cooperative and integrated evangelical theological education on the global level. Dr Nöelliste also presented a paper on North/South Issues and Theological Education . Other papers were presented by Dr David Burnett on the use of technology and Dr Rolf Hille (chair of the WEF Theological Commission) on postmodernity. Panels and practical sessions covered a wide range of other topics, including ethnic issues, globalization, spiritual formation, networking, libraries, educational quality and self-study. The closing presentation was by Dr Chris Wright, principal of All Nations.

Several of these papers are being published in the WEF TC journal, Evangelical Review of Theology. The first group will appear in the April 2001 issue.

ICETE is a global community, sponsored by seven continental networks of theological schools to encourage international contact and collaboration among all those concerned for excellence and renewal in evangelical theological education world-wide. It was established in 1980 under the auspices of the WEF Theological Commission when it was known as the International Council of Accrediting Agencies for Evangelical Theological Education (ICAA). The present name (pronounced "eye-set") was adopted in 1996 to accent the purpose of the community rather than its principal constituents. Its vision is Strengthening theological education through international cooperation .

Since its founding ICETE has organised a series of international consultations on vital issues affecting theological education. Many of the papers from these meetings have been published in the ICETE monograph series. The most important publication is the Manifesto on the Renewal of Theological Education, available in several languages. It has become a standard reference resource for discussion and implementation of renewal in evangelical theological education worldwide. The original Manifesto was issued in 1983. The slightly revised edition of 1990 is now the official version, and is available in several international languages.

The Chair of ICETE is Dr. Dagfinn Solheim, Norway, and the Director is Dr. Dieumeme Nöelliste. Dr Paul Bowers serves as interim international administrator. ICETE welcomes enquiries about its activities and the work of its member bodies:

ICETE 
PO Box 64 
Muizenberg 7950 
South Africa

fax: 27-21-788-1662 
email: icete@sim.org.za or dagfinn.solheim@nlm.no

A number of resources and further details about the organization and its member bodies can be found on its website.

Copies of the special issue of Evangelical Review of Theology containing ICETE Consultation papers (and regular subscriptions) may be obtained by contacting Paternoster Periodicals PO Box 300, Carlisle, Cumbria CA3 0QS UK or Jeremy Mudditt . Enquiries to the Editor