Pastoral ministry covers the range of human thought and experience. Seminary graduates may thoroughly imbibe their pastoral training and still be broadsided by challenges brought to them in their first week in a church. Their seminary education is necessary as the foundation for their ministry – yet the learning never stops.
Questions such as these continually arise: I am preaching in Mark. Does Jesus refer to the “produce of the vine” in Mark to prophesy that after his death and resurrection he will “drink it new” to celebrate his ownership and victory? As people come into my church, people move on. Is numerical growth the measure of a church? Awareness is about inclusiveness. Is my church a safe place for all people? I am not sure I am prepared to knowledgeably address social issues. What can churches do about the effects of contemporary pornography on dating and families? I don’t have a youth pastor. How can we be sure our youth will be trained to become the future leaders of our churches? I understand Northwest has transformed its paradigm for training pastors. Where can I learn more about that?
To provide seminary professors and church leaders of evangelical denominations a forum for research and a resource for lifelong learning, Northwest offers the Northwest Institute for Ministry Education Research (NIMER). The answers to the above questions, and more, can be found at nimer.ca.
The website is structured according to the components of a seminary education: Bible and Theology, History and Culture, and Leadership and Ministry Skills. The articles in these sections meet academic requirements and are peer reviewed. The articles in the Resources section cover specific aspects of church life. Less formal discussions are carried on through blogs. Currently professors and pastors are conversing on the NIMER site about the COVID-19 pandemic. We invite you to explore the website and participate: comment or read the Author Guidelines to learn how you can share your expertise with others.