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Fall 2007 · Vol. 36 No. 2 · pp. 159–73 

Shaping Christian Higher Education for Church Ministry and Service

Alfred Neufeld

The university as we know it dates from medieval times when the church controlled and directed all areas of human life. As such it has a noble, but problematic legacy. After the successive onslaughts of the Reformation, the Enlightenment, and the French Revolution, universities became secular and state supported. Whether one associated with a church or subscribed to a religion was, on the other hand, increasingly considered a private matter. Faith was thus relegated to the margins of public life, and certainly to the margins of academic discourse, with the result that the separation of church and state went hand in hand with the separation of church and higher education. 1

The challenge for future Christian higher education will be to retain confidence in the church and be convinced that ministry and service in the world is done through, and in the name of, the church.

To this day, Christian higher education in Europe is profoundly marked by the state church tradition. It also is marked by the reality that almost all higher education is supported by national governments. The same situation obtains for most Latin American countries and parts of Asia and Africa. At least two consequences follow: on one hand, Christian higher education in state universities must be “public” and “scientific” in the sense that they must be open to all and must promote objective, critical thinking. On the other hand, ministerial and Christian “higher education” is done not in university but in post-university, church-supervised “on-the-job” training. Until recently, European Mennonite churches and most Evangelical Free churches have been unable to offer a viable alternative or academic equivalent to theological programs available at state universities.

Canada and the United States have always had a far stronger private university tradition, as well as a history of denominational and para-church theological seminaries. This has had the benefit of drawing church and higher education closer together. But with this benefit come unsolved tensions. Does the church inform higher education, or does higher education inform the church? Is the task of church-run higher education to reinforce tradition or to reshape it? Should it be the function of institutions of higher learning to provide practical pastoral training? Do church administrators develop their skills in universities or theological seminaries?

The churches of Asia and the South have often been torn between European and North American approaches to higher education. Until recently North American or European institutions would refuse to recognize most of their academic degrees. Historically, missionaries to developing countries could dispense with higher education. Most foreign missionaries and evangelists ignored the intellectuals and academics in the countries they sought to evangelize. This is now changing, and for at least two reasons: 1. Second and third generation believers in these countries are eagerly pursuing higher education and seeking to integrate their Sunday school faith with university education. 2. Middle and upper class political, economic, and academic leaders are seriously looking to the church for answers to private as well as public questions.


Higher Education can be Christian

What makes higher education Christian? The curriculum? The fact that faculty are Christian? Or is higher education “Christian” when its subject is theology or pastoral studies?

I still remember an old Mennonite German farmer telling me: Je gelehrter, desto verkehrter. 2 Many readers will also remember that a group of conference leaders asked J.B. Toews not to pursue doctoral studies because they believed it would hurt his ability to relate as an equal to others in the brotherhood. We shouldn’t take it for granted that “Christian higher education” is not a contradiction in terms. At a time when many churches and conference institutions expect their leaders to hold a university degree or two, it is appropriate to consider the cost of “theological and pastoral professionalism.” J.B. Toews has rightly criticized the model of the pastor as “chief executive officer,” where

churches tend to function as an institution, not as an interdependent organism which Mennonite Brethren perceived the local church and the larger conference to be. In an institution, leadership is delegated to those with special training, those who “know” (theologians), but those may lack the authority that is rooted in a mutual relationship of experiential commonality. Pastors in this scheme assume the assignment of managing the program of the congregation. 3

John Driver likewise argues that the phenomenon of the religioso profesional is incompatible with the idea of the priesthood of all believers. 4

Christian higher education can be shaped

Institutions of higher education are not easy to shape or transform. Today, for example, the traditional European university system is collapsing under the weight of the Bologna Process, which aims to make programs and degrees comparable across Europe. 5 J.B. Toews, of course, played an important role in reshaping Mennonite Brethren higher education in North America, but strong and credible leaders such as he are rare. Even the Roman Catholic Church, with centralized control over its universities, has difficulty conforming them to its designs. If the Catholic Church is stymied, what can Mennonite Brethren churches, with neither Pope nor Vatican, reasonably hope to achieve?

Higher education can be made to serve ministry and service

This is also a problematic assumption. Universities and many seminaries have and need academic freedom and autonomy. Otherwise they become mere vocational training centers. Ministry and service, however, need the inspiration of a compelling theological vision as well as practical professionalism. Connecting inspiration with professionalism remains an ongoing challenge for Christian higher education.

Higher education can be shaped by the church

What do we mean by the term “church” in this context? Is it the local church, the regional evangelical church, the denominational national church, or the global church of Christ that should shape Christian higher education? Perhaps all of the above? In order to exert influence on how education is done in our colleges and universities, we need a theology of denominations as well as a theology of conference. Without denominational identity and without conference loyalty it is difficult to shape higher education to meet the concerns of the church. I am increasingly convinced that something like a theology of denominationalism and a theology of conference loyalty is essential.


Anabaptists were not leaders in sixteenth century higher education. Zwingli in Zurich, Calvin in Geneva, Luther in Wittenberg, Capito and Buzer in Strasbourg—all held the title of Magister in their local universities. They were doctores theologiae. Moreover, it is fair to say that they “did reformation” “from above.” Their reforms had political, academic, and ecclesiastical support. Anabaptism, on the contrary, was largely a reform movement of the grassroots, “from below.” In the sixteenth century, Anabaptists for the most part failed to secure the backing of political, academic, or ecclesiastical authorities. This does not mean they were ill-prepared for the challenges of academic life. Some Anabaptists were in fact highly educated. But politically and academically, the age was not friendly toward reform movements “from below.” Anabaptists were, in a sense, forced to be powerless and they made serious mistakes wherever they tried to reverse their circumstances. The Peasant War, the Münster affair, the abuse of power in applying church discipline, and the envy of some toward those in authority indicate that Anabaptists were not entirely content to be powerless.

Yet it is clear that objections voiced by Anabaptist leaders were coherent and worthy of careful philosophical and theological analysis. Their critique of sacramentalism and their arguments for religious tolerance, the separation of church from state, social justice and equality, local church autonomy, believer’s baptism, non-resistance—all these were issues that required a high degree of analytical skill to weigh properly. It is therefore fair to say that Anabaptism, although politically marginal, raised issues that demanded serious attention among the most educated of its detractors.

The Bender-Yoder tradition

It is not surprising, then, that the two most brilliant exponents of Anabaptism in the twentieth century, Harold S. Bender and John Howard Yoder, were leading professors and higher education administrators. Remember that Bender’s Anabaptist Vision 6 was originally addressed to the American Society of Church History, of which he was president. And John Howard Yoder understood his theological work as going beyond Karl Barth’s theology, rigorously challenging the basic positions of Europe’s most gifted twentieth century theologian. 7

Like the sixteenth century reformers, Bender and Yoder (and let’s add the MB pioneer and patriarch in this area, J.B. Toews) had a profound commitment to the church, despite their university vocations. This made them extraordinary. One of Bender’s most moving books is, These are My People. 8 Toews declined to finish his doctorate because he respected the concerns of MB conference leaders. And after his moral transgressions came to light, John Howard Yoder was willing to listen to elders of the local church which had ordained him, which eventually led to his restoration.

Indeed, the three postulates of Bender’s Anabaptist vision—believer’s church, discipleship, and ethics of love—are all profoundly ecclesiocentric. Yoder’s remarkable debate with Niebuhr on the subject of “Christ and culture” made it clear that there is no Christ outside and without the church, which is the visible community of believers called to live the culture of the body of Christ. 9 In their academic theological work, both Bender and Yoder put the church at the center of their understanding of Christian faith.

MB spiritual renewal and education

There is clarity but also ambiguity in the theological shift related to the MB dissent of 1860. The movement was essentially an effort to bring theology and practice closer together. Most early MB critiques of the Mennonite church point to the lack of discipleship and ethics in the daily lives of church members. So it seems clear that the old Anabaptist claim that faith and life must agree was one of the forces driving the MB renewal.

The 1860 letter of separation also contained an implicit critique of a sacramentalism that had crept into traditional Mennonite churches in the Ukraine. Recall that the basic scandal that led to disciplinary action was a celebration of the Lord’s Supper in a private setting and without the presence of an ordained Mennonite minister. While sixteenth century Anabaptists claimed not to have any sacraments in the medieval sense, traditional Mennonite churches around the 1860s seem to have practiced a “practical sacramentalism.” Thus, the MB dissidents, in their reference to baptism, rejected “memorized faith,” that is, formalism over against an authentic and existential conversion experience.

It is also evident that MB dissent considered the churches of the Mennonite colony as a kind of “state church,” much like the Volkskirche of the sixteenth century that Anabaptists rejected. Furthermore, MBs sought to recover the Anabaptist idea of the church as essentially missionary, and this motivated them to put aside an inherited reluctance to reach other ethnic groups with a “Mennonite gospel.”

But from the start, the MB movement contended with numerous ambiguities. Among them was a fascinating mixture conservatism and modernism. MB conservatism expressed itself in its desire to return to Menno and the apostolic church. However, MBs also eagerly embraced the modern, hence their openness to Pietism, the Baptist movement, the foreign missionary movement, revivalism, and formal (including higher) education.

A second ambiguity of the movement was its near sacramentalistic clinging to baptism by immersion. Initially MBs needed a visible sign to mark their difference from other Mennonites. They might even have been right to re-baptize people who requested it because they regarded their first baptism as something other than believer’s baptism. A non-sacramental view of baptism kept them from thinking of rebaptism as a “mortal sin.” But against the backdrop of the earlier, theologically-relaxed understanding of the ordinance, their later insistence that the mode of baptism is absolutely crucial makes no sense.

A third ambiguity has to do with what we might call the dialectics of freedom and order or perhaps the dialectics of emotion and discipline. The 1860 dissent was a step toward freedom from tradition and ecclesiastic hierarchy. The June Reform of 1865 that followed the Fröhliche Richtung, on the other hand, was a step toward order, discipline, and ritual. The early MBs thus hoped to resolve the issue of freedom and order (so fundamental in the context of higher education); how successfully they did so remains uncertain.

The list of MB students pursuing higher education in the nineteenth and early twentieth century is long. The theological seminaries in Basel, Hamburg and Berlin were especially attractive. The first MB Bible School in Tschongraw, Tabor College, Winnipeg’s MB Bible College, the Bible School movement, and Fresno’s Biblical Seminary and University are all evidence of the MB affinity for higher education.

Missions and education are closely linked in MB history. Delbert Wiens has shown that MB motives for migrating to the cities and taking up the challenges of urban life were informed by philosophical and theological considerations, not merely by practical and economic ones. 10

MBs have been accused of being enamored by popular evangelicalism. This charge points to another striking ambiguity: among other Mennonites, MBs are often considered “pietistic separatists.” Yet they developed an amazing practical ecumenicity. They gladly made contact and engaged in dialogue with other denominations and other cultures, which required a highly developed sense of identity and considerable powers of critical thinking. Thus, while MBs have been considered separatists, in practice they could be called “alliance-ists.” P.M. Friesen, in fact, was founder of the first “Allianzgemeinde”—the “Sevastopoler-Evangelisch-Mennonitische-Bruderschaft.” 11 More than many other Mennonites, MBs have been eager to make common cause with churches of other denominations, with all the blessings and dangers such openness brings.

An Anabaptist MB theology of higher education

The first MBs sought to recover a believer’s church. Their approach to theology was therefore profoundly ecclesiocentric. The church is the body of Christ, making God and His kingdom visible in the world. This proposition stands at the centre of their theology and practice. Missions, ethics, economics, politics, education, family, and spirituality—all must be linked theologically to the church.

From the church perspective the following ought to be basic features or principles of an MB theology of higher education:

  • Existential Christianity. Faith and works are conjoined in a personal and existential experience.
  • Community hermeneutics. Bible interpretation and “local theology” must be done together with other believers, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit.
  • Macro and micro diaconia. The church exists to serve the world. Service in love informs attitudes toward community, nation, and the world.
  • Political and public evangelism. Jesus calls all to turn and follow him. This call must be heard in the private and public realm.
  • To believe, to understand, and to obey. Faith and reason are integrated in the search to understand and do the will of God on earth.
  • Seeing the world from within the Bible. Holy Scripture is like a house of God’s revealed presence. It is the house we live in, and it is from within this house that we look at the world, hence, get a “biblical worldview.”
  • Seeing the world as Jesus sees it. Ethical and political questions challenge the church to stand where Jesus stands.
  • Holistic gospel, holistic worldview, and holistic mission. The redemption of creation in the present and in the future aims at all dimensions of existence.


Theology and the social sciences

Our topic is how higher education might be shaped to serve ministry and service in the church. In the academic world, ministry and service fall under the aegis of the social sciences. In the seminary context, they belong to the field of practical theology. It was Schleiermacher who first developed that concept and introduced practical theology into the curriculum of German faculties of theology. 12 Practical theology raises two important questions: How important are social sciences for the Christian in general and for ministry and service of the church in particular? And, second, how should theory and practice, academic theology and practical theology, be related?

In the last 200 years, theology can be said to have had the same problem with the social sciences that it had with philosophy in the Middle Ages. There is great irony in the fact that Justin Martyr’s translation of the Gospel into philosophical language, an ad hoc evangelistic strategy, led to the domination of theology by philosophy. This was best exemplified by Thomas Aquinas, who made extensive use of Aristotle’s philosophy in his Summa Theologiae. Philosophy was called ancilia theologiae, a handmaid of theology, but it slowly became the principal authority. For this reason, Luther and the Reformation radically severed theology’s connection with philosophy and vehemently denied the preeminence of reason, arguing that reason was as sinful and fallen as any other human faculty. During the Enlightenment, Kant reversed the relationship yet again, claiming that pure reason did not need Christianity. Theologians, he suggested, could well continue to use philosophy as their handmaid, as long as it was clear that the maid held the torch and showed the way to otherwise benighted theologians. 13

Today it is the social sciences that dominate as torchbearers for theology and the ministry of the church. But to permit them that status is to subordinate a Christian account of social reality to a secular one. Not that there aren’t important insights to be gained from psychologists, sociologists, and political scientists. As they carefully investigate the complex behavior of created but fallen humanity, their work must be examined and integrated into theological and pastoral education. But while studying the social sciences, Christian convictions need to be kept firmly in mind. These include a view of the human condition informed by the Bible, the centrality of the church as God’s alternative society, grace and redemption as God’s ways of healing society, and the lordship of Christ in ethics and over human history.

Relating theory and practice

Liberation theology has reminded us how crucial practice is for understanding. Understood as obedience to Christ, practice is the first act of theology. There should be no dichotomy between academic and practical theology: all theology should be practical, and all Christians should be able to give a coherent theological account of their everyday practice. In reality, integration of the two is difficult to introduce into curriculum design. Moreover, the need to train students to do their work according to professional standards remains.

Practical training

The concern to instill professional standards in students raises the question of who takes responsibility for training future ministry leaders in getting the work done. Historically, at least two models have emerged:

  1. The seminary or the university is responsible and creates opportunities for practical training through field trips, supervised practicums, and so on.
  2. Practical training is almost entirely the responsibility of the church, which it assumes through some kind of apprenticeship program.

Neither of these models alone seems adequate. If the college or university provides practical training, the church is alienated. If the church provides it, the institution doubts that theology and practice will be properly integrated.

But there are ways to blend the two models, especially if both sides act with the necessary humility. It is good for faculty of Christian higher education to be actively involved as church leaders, in missions, and in service. In an age of professionalism churches should refuse to let their faculty retreat into an academic ivory tower. But it is also good that churches be pushed to think critically of their practices and ministries. The world, the world of evangelical superstars in particular, offers many promises of ministry success and dramatic church growth based on supposedly sound scientific principles. Rigorous theological education can equip pastors to be “wise as serpents” when ideas arise that may seduce the gullible.

Theology, planning, professionalism

Training in service and ministry require both academic and practical professionalism. But colleges and universities are not factories. They do not produce products or easily quantifiable results. Moreover, “training” in the sense of developing practical skills is not the primary task of higher education, although this does happen in the fields of sports and medicine. Pastoral ministry, moreover, is profoundly linked to the character and the gifts of the student. “Mentoring” or “discipleship” might be more appropriate terms for what happens in this context.

Unfortunately, many ministry and service graduates lack professionalism, especially in the areas of strategic planning and administration. This deficiency might have to do with the rapid change that churches and ministries undergo. Consequently, no fixed liturgy or procedures handbook exists. Furthermore, our theology of the priesthood of all believers, which disinclines us to make the pastor a kind of CEO, militates against stronger cultivation of a professional ethic. Nevertheless, the skills needed to develop strategic plans and to perform administrative tasks professionally need more attention in our seminaries and colleges.


Higher education and theological leadership

A primary reason why a denomination should join a national and global conference is to develop a strong theological identity. Practical reasons alone are insufficient to justify a denomination’s existence. But by doing careful theological work, work that engages the past and is proactive in meeting new challenges, a denomination can gain a sense of what it might contribute to the larger body of Christ. For this reason, every conference should have a council of elders or a board of faith and life that provides guidance by addressing theological questions.

Theological leadership is most keenly needed in times of crisis, be they political, ideological, or social in nature. Whenever the Gospel confronts a new culture, whenever popular culture changes drastically due to migrations, technological innovations, and so forth, a theological crisis is not far behind. To do responsible contextualized theology or to develop “little theologies” for specific situations is an ambitious but urgent task which the church cannot afford to ignore.

We have paid a high price for our failure to provide sound theological leadership in eras of social and political upheaval. During the Nazi era, while B.B. Janz and Johannes Harder maintained a coherent Anabaptist position, B.H. Unruh, Walter Quiring, and others proved unable to discern the times. Today, MBs do not yet have a theology of globalization, a theology of economic development and social justice, or a political theology. We are therefore in danger of lacking a theology of church and salvation that will guide and capture the imagination of the next generation.

Higher education and institutional leadership

It is the mandate of seminaries and Bible colleges to prepare leaders. But leadership is a practical thing that one learns by doing. One becomes a leader by watching leaders and working alongside them. Moreover, leaders have special character traits. The role of seminary should essentially be to assist potential leaders to become better leaders. Shortly after graduation, a student should develop one or more “career plans” and map out their next twenty years as leaders.

Corem facet theologiaem—the quality of heart makes a theologian. Equipping for ministry and service is about the quality and formation of the heart. How does that happen? The biblical model of leadership formation points toward mentoring. Many of us still vividly remember the mentoring J.B. Toews did with us. Of course, he was a genius in this area, but his mentoring grew out of a deep sense of responsibility and confidence, with an awareness of his calling, his personality, and his authority. His mentoring was neither authoritarian nor intolerant, a style that might have grown out of the old village tradition as practiced in the Ukraine and Coaldale. I’m convinced that our conferences again need a contextualized mentoring of that kind, as do our global forums at ICOMB 14 and Mennonite World Conference.

In many of the national MB conferences I’ve been privileged to visit, I hear a consistent call for stronger general leadership. Stronger leadership, however, might well be a mixed blessing. It often tends to leave congregations and individuals spiritually immature. Authentic Christian leadership does just the opposite: it encourages the development and maturity of individuals, congregations, and conferences. Poor leadership, on the other hand, robs us of public credibility and strong identity, with the result that ministry, missions, and service soon suffer for lack of involvement and commitment.

We live in the age of the local church. It seems counterintuitive: at a time when communication is instant, when even global distances are short and travel is easy, local churches are growing stronger and more independent than conferences and global fellowships. This may be because many cultures have reacted against globalization and have intentionally embraced the local. On the other hand, the global has become local in many places. Vancouver, London, Shanghai, and even Ciudad del Este are remarkably diverse ethnically, and any church in those cities can do “world mission.”

But I still believe we need a theology and practice of conference. The church of Christ is not just a local church but also a denominational church. It might even be admissible to talk about a “national church” if we guard ourselves against fascism. Thus, between the local church and the global “invisible church” there are and there need to be several federating bodies. On a national and global level, the MB church will only be able to make an impact if its national and global organization is coherent. This holds true for its relationship to other churches and also to society and “the world.” From the beginning MBs considered conference as a covenant; hence they called it a Bundeskonferenz. This theology of covenant is thoroughly biblical: the twelve tribes covenanting to be God’s people and the people of Israel model this theology. A theology of covenant between local churches within a nation and a theology of covenant within the global MB conferences and mission agencies will be vital for the future.

Pastoral leadership in conference

The main mission of Christian higher education, particularly of seminaries, is to educate pastors and help them become good shepherds of local churches. There are many reasons why seminaries and Christian universities have difficulty fulfilling this role. In northern cultures, being a pastor is stressful. Emotional rewards are minimal and the burnout rate is high. Furthermore, the congregational believers’ church model of “lay ministry” seems to be in crisis. It is not clear how a university-trained pastor with a fulltime job in a local church can handle the situation biblically.

In most churches in Latin America, a local church pastor cannot make a living as a pastor. He must be an evangelist to keep the church growing. Moreover, he is normally expected to be a strong leader in the tradition of the patriarchal tribal chief still loved by much of the culture. But that leadership tradition clashes sharply with Anabaptist and MB church theology. As a result, educated Mennonites tend to avoid the pastorate and gravitate toward humanitarian organizations. The consequence is that local churches are often pastored by people with little or no formal theological education.

The good news is that in the North and the South, enrollment in pastoral and theological studies is up. That leaves conferences with the challenge of developing career plans for their theology students. Local churches as well as conferences need to establish clear timetables and roadmaps for seminary graduates going into their first five years of ministry. On the other hand, our seminaries and colleges need to analyze the stark reality of church life more thoroughly in order to “professionalize” students for their future positions as pastors.

Perhaps our deepest need is to recover the mandate of Jesus that we pray for vocations. Pastoral ministry requires a deep sense of individual calling, confirmed and endorsed by church leaders and congregations. The call to ministry must precede all other considerations.

Diaconal leadership

The vast majority of graduates from Christian colleges and universities will pursue vocations other than the pastoral ministry, though some will go into para-church and non-governmental agencies. Can Christian higher education confer any spiritual benefits on these students? I suggest that it can, in several ways: 1. by providing a holistic gospel that encompasses all of life and all professional careers; 2. by developing a set of ethical standards for various professions and careers; 3. by articulating a theology for the social and political arenas; 4. by instilling in students a service lifestyle; 5. by developing criteria of justice and solidarity for the national and global community; and 6. by carefully examining all fields of study, especially economics, cultural anthropology, cross-cultural communication, conflict transformation and resolution studies, education studies, public health and bioethics, and art and media studies from Christian perspectives.



There are at least four ways in which church and institutions of higher education might relate to each other: 1. The church exercizes control over higher education. 2. Higher education leads the church. 3. Higher education operates independently of the church. 4. Higher education and church work as equal partners.

I would argue that the fourth option is healthiest, but that in times of severe crisis the church must assume authority over its institutions of higher learning. This option requires considerable maturity and wisdom from church leaders, since colleges, seminaries, and universities provide the church with vital research and analysis. Ideally, church and school should relate as partners, enriching, protecting, and correcting each other.


The curriculum at a Christian university should reflect the mission of the church to the world. This is important for two reasons. First, graduates pursuing a profession will find it easier to fit into the church’s mission to society. Secondly, to be effective in its holistic mission in and to the world, the church needs an academic curriculum to spell out that vision practically.


Christian higher education is as good and as Christian as its faculty are. That is why the quality of faculty members is so important. It should therefore be stressed that their church life, theological convictions, personal ethics, and work ethic matter. It also matters that they are loyal to, as well as critical of, church and tradition, and that they are committed to global Christianity and global justice. Finally, a faculty member’s personal piety and willingness to serve will be of keen interest to a Christian institution of higher learning.

Field education

I have already argued that practice, direct experience in the work of church ministry, and service are indispensable for students. Several conditions will enhance the field education experience. New students should already have experience in service and ministry. Although supervised field education is frequently a burden for local churches and service agencies, it is crucial that it take place with mentors immersed in the gritty realities of real-life ministry and service. Practical training in many areas of ministry and service needs to be structured and supervised outside the classroom. In the global era, a cross-cultural or overseas experience is essential. Finally, graduates should be offered a two year practicum that includes mentoring and supervision before they enter the labor force or assume a ministry position.


In the end, the challenge for future Christian higher education will be to retain confidence in the church and be convinced that ministry and service in the world is done through, and in the name of, the church. If the church is the body of Christ, then all that we do “in the name of Jesus,” we do in the name of the church. Higher education will be less than fully Christian, certainly less than fully Anabaptist, if it cannot embrace these principles.


  1. Steffen Dietzsch, Der Streit der Fakultäten in Königsberg und als Text (Hannover: Juni, 2004).
  2. A rough translation: “The more you learn, the dumber you are.”—Ed.
  3. J.B. Toews, A Pilgrimage of Faith: The Mennonite Brethren Church in Russia and North America 1860-1990 (Winnipeg/Hillsboro, KS: Kindred Press, 1993), 225-6.
  4. Juan Driver, Contra Corriente: Ensayos sobre la Eclesiología Radical, 2d ed. (Guatemala: Ediciones Semilla, 1994), 33-34.
  5. For more information, see the Bologna Process website: —Ed.
  6. Harold S. Bender, The Anabaptist Vision (Scottdale, PA; Kitchener, ON: Herald Press, 1944).
  7. Craig A. Carter, The Politics of the Cross. The Theology and Social Ethics of John H. Yoder (Grand Rapids, MI: Brazos Press, 2001), 61.
  8. Harold S. Bender, These are My People: The Nature of the Church and Its Discipleship According to the New Testament (Scottdale, PA: Herald, 1962).
  9. John H. Yoder, “How H. Richard Niebuhr Reasons: A Critique of Christ and Culture,” in Authentic Transformation: A New Vision of Christ and Culture, ed. Glen H. Stassen, D.M. Yeager, and John Howard Yoder (Nashville: Abingdon, 1996), 35.
  10. Delbert Wiens, “From the Village to the City,” Direction 2 (October 1973 and January 1974): 98-149.
  11. Klaus Loewen, Vom Werden und Wachsen der Evangelisch Mennonitischen Brüderschaft (EMB). Ein Beitrag zu ihrer Geschichte (Filadelfia: Off y Graph, 2005), 22.
  12. Bernhard Ott, Fragmentierung und Integration in der theologischen Ausbildung: Ist Schleiermachers theologische Enzyklopädie die Lösung oder die Ursache des Problems? (Unpublished paper read for the Association of Francophone Theological Schools at Bienenberg, Basel, September 2000). See also Ott’s Mission Studies in Theological Education: A Critical Analysis of Mission Training in Evangelical Bible Colleges and Seminaries in Germany and German-Speaking Switzerland from 1960 to 1995 (Oxford: Oxford Centre for Mission Studies, 1999).
  13. Immanuel Kant, The Conflict of the Faculties, 1798; cited in German by Dietzsch, Der Streit der Fakultäten.
  14. The International Committee of Mennonite Brethren. ICOMB originated with Mennonite Brethren Missions & Service International (MBMSI) in 1988 as a framework within which MB conferences around the world could learn to relate as peers rather than as mission churches overseen by MBMSI. —Ed.
Alfred Neufeld is president of the Evangelical University of Paraguay and dean of the Faculty of Theology and of the Faculty of Education and Social Work. He is a theology professor, preacher, member of the Society of Mennonite History, and chair of the Mennonite World Conference’s national coordinating committee for Assembly 15. He has been married since 1981 and has four adult children.

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