After a series of 13 thematic modules that have addressed the most important areas of a pastor’s life and ministry, conducted over 3 years, 12 pastors and elders of the Evangelical churches in Romania graduated the ATS (Advanced Theological Studies) program.
The event was held at Elim House near Zarnesti on March 10-12, 2010. In a festive environment, in the presence of ATS Program Coordinator – Dr. Andrew B. Seidel, Executive Director of The Howard G. Hendricks Center for Christian Leadership from Dallas Theological Seminary and Board Chairman of Entrust International, and the Romanian coordinator of this program – Pastor Mihai Dumitrascu from Galati, these 12 leaders representing the 5th generation of this program received graduation diplomas.
Dr. Andy Seidel is a good practitioner of discipleship as a lifestyle. He invests in and is constantly accompanied by his disciples and colleagues in his missionary journeys through Russia, various other countries from Eastern Europe and Central Asia, exposing them to the leadership training ministry he does in this part of the world. On this occasion he was accompanied by J. Brian Eby from Entrust International, Licensed Professional and National Certified Counselor, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Licensed Social Worker, and by a younger companion, Jason. Brian Eby will teach the module “The Pastor as a Counselor” within the ATS program.
ATS program provides those having a seminary or college theological education a high level of training and equipment, in order to become more competent and to train and mentor the local church ministers, equipping this way new generations of leaders. The emphasis is on developing a godly character, ministry and academic skills. A main purpose of this program is creating awareness among the participants regarding the importance of spirituality and a godly character, the importance of owning and living the biblical values, and cultivating a good student-professor relationship during the learning process. The program currently operates through Big Impact, Romania.
For the next series of students that will start in the fall, the intention is to move the courses in the e-learning system, aiming at increasing the effectiveness of training. By combining learning methods (small group interaction, student-teacher dialogue and large group gatherings/ joint meetings in the seminars) we aim at developing critical and creative thinking of the Christian ministers, personal responsibility and discipline in training, and the assimilation degree of Scripture values and practices.