Theological School Program to Improve the Quality of Congregational Ministry - Andover Newton Theological School

Project Number: 
Start Date: 
Mon, 11/30/1998
End Date: 
Sun, 09/30/2001

In order to reassess and change the model of theological education offered on its campus, Andover Newton Theological Seminary initiated an all-encompassing comprehensive process under the auspices of this three-year project. Involving professional consultants in the areas of organizational development, academic quality, financial analysis, and ethnic and racial diversity, the process was geared towards discovering ways in which the seminary graduates could be better equipped for ministry in congregations.

These consultations led to a comprehensive evaluation and major strategic planning process named Vision 2007. Six Task Teams have been set up to work with each of the four consultative areas identified above. The process, and the capital fund raising campaign in particular, is set to culminate in the year 2007 when the seminary celebrates its bicentennial. As a result of the consultative process involving focus groups of lay leaders and clergypersons, seven areas for pastoral preparation have been identified: personal spiritual formation; people and communication skills; planning and leading of worship; understanding church life and the relationship of church to community and society; leadership, organization and management skills. The school has made curriculum changes that engage specifically with these issues.