Colombia Seminary Strives to Both Educate and Serve
In 1944, the Biblical Seminary of Colombia was founded in Medellin, Colombia. Dr. Benjamin Pearson was the first president. God`s provision has been constant through the 73-year history under the leadership of God-fearing, Bible-believing men and women. Elizabeth Sendek, a missionary of United World Mission, is now president.
The mission of the seminary is to prepare professional men and women who are highly trained to exercise leadership for service to the evangelical church and the community. The profile of the seminary has always been to be a Biblical institution, with our teaching models founded in Biblical teaching and practice. We insist in Christian formation focusing on the devotional life of each student. Being a University Foundation within the Colombian educational system, we know we must strive to maintain our faithfulness to the Word of God and the call that He has made to each one of us.
Colombia is in a peace process after over 50 years of civil war. We are looking for ways to serve the church with the new social/political challenges. We are involved in a three-year research project funded by Templeton Foundation to study displaced people and how the church can serve them. This project is titled: Integral Missiology and the Human Flourishing of Internally Displaced Persons in Colombia. There are study groups to emphasis integral missiology, pedagogy, economics, sociology, psychology and interaction with the public sector. We have finished a year of research and have discovered who these people are, and this year the emphasis is to write material for courses that will be used by the churches for teaching these groups.
Several students, including Sara Arrieta, are involved in this research project. Sara will be preparing her personal investigation for graduation titled: Participation of the evangelical Christian church in the restructuring of the social fabric of displaced people in Colombia. She will be using Ezekiel 37: 1-14 to show the connection between Ezekiel and the reality of displaced people in Colombia.
Sara has also prepared a field research portion of this project, and is assisting the area of pedagogy with a course on The New Identity. Her project includes studying the sociological literature about social capital, with exegetical and theological reflections and field research with interviews with religious leaders. She has helped the group studying the church involvement in the public sector where she helped to map the organizations that attend victims of sexual abuse.
The seminary focuses on both research projects and practical ministry assignments in the churches each week help to assure the student’s academic learning is applied to social and ministry realities.
By: Don Sendek, Serving in Colombia