During the first two weeks of December, six Southern Baptist seminaries sent out more than 1,100 graduates to pursue their ministry callings. Each institution celebrated milestones and shared words of inspiration to the students who were going out. The mission of the seminaries of the Southern Baptist Convention is to prepare God-called men and women for vocational service in Baptist churches and in other Christian ministries throughout the world through programs of spiritual development, theological studies and practical preparation in ministry.
Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary
KANSAS CITY, Mo., (BP) — The Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary community celebrated the culmination of its students’ hard work, dedication and perseverance, as the school held its 66th commencement Dec. 6.
Additionally, president Jason Allen announced that the seminary will begin a series of messages during upcoming graduation and convocation services focusing on specific doctrinal topics of urgency and relevance.
Two-hundred-five students were conferred 222 degrees and began their service as the next generation of pastors, missionaries and ministry leaders. With the school’s enrollment growth, now surpassing 4,000 students, the number of graduates has also increased, up from the 169 this time last year.
Midwestern Seminary also celebrated a milestone during the commencement ceremony, as 29 Spanish-speaking church planters earned their Church Planting Certificates. Two of those graduates also received their Masters in Theological Studies with an emphasis on Pastoral Ministry.
Allen’s 10-part graduation/convocation sermon series will focus on topics such as the sufficiency of Scripture, the exclusivity of the Gospel, and penal substitutionary atonement. He began the series with a message from Jude entitled, “Truths Worth Contending For: Biblical Inerrancy.”
Allen acknowledged that commencement is an ideal setting to focus on the topic of inerrancy because it’s the “biggest, grandest stage that we have to offer, and our topic today, biblical inerrancy, merits such a stage.” He added that, as Southern Baptists, there is never a wrong time to reassert, cling to and contend for one of our central and foundational truths.
For more information about Midwestern Seminary’s commencement, click here.
Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary
FORT WORTH, Texas (BP) — Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary’s fall commencement ceremony Dec. 6 celebrated 191 bachelor’s, master’s, doctoral and certificate graduates.
Among the graduates were roughly 40 women, including Susan K. Rainey, who was the 10,000th female student to complete theological education at Southwestern since its founding in 1908.
Reflecting on the milestone after commencement, SWBTS president Adam W. Greenway said, “The 10,000th female graduate is noteworthy because of what it demonstrates about Southwestern Seminary’s longstanding commitment to train women called by God to Christian service. Now, more than ever, we are resolved to offer the best and most comprehensive options for theological education to our sisters in Christ for their more faithful service to His church.”
Preaching from 2 Corinthians 4:1-6, Greenway told the graduates that “while we celebrate what you have accomplished and achieved today,” never forget that “it is not ultimately about what you have achieved, but about what you have received.” He referred both to their salvation and to their calls to ministry.
“Yours is to be a ministry of light,” Greenway said. “Yours is to be a ministry where people will find hope, real hope, that comes only through the life-giving power of the Gospel of Christ.”
For more information about Southwestern Seminary’s commencement, click here.
Southern Baptist Theological Seminary
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (BP) — Graduates of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary are heralds of the good news of salvation through the forgiveness of sins, said R. Albert Mohler Jr., president the seminary in Louisville, Ky., at its 224th commencement exercises Dec. 13.
During the ceremony in the historic Alumni Memorial Chapel, 150 master’s and doctoral students were present to receive their degrees as members of a 208-person graduating class. These graduates are sent out as stewards of the knowledge of salvation into a world that desperately needs that knowledge, Mohler said in his commencement address.
“We are sending out these graduates to go out into the nations and out into the pulpits and into the churches, and to speak to everyone everywhere in order to communicate the knowledge of salvation,” Mohler said. “But it’s not just [a message of salvation that says], ‘This is good news; God loves you.’ That’s true, but it’s infinitely better than that. [The message is] that ‘you are a sinner, but God shows His mercy to you in Christ in whom your sins can be forgiven.'”
His mission, Mohler said, is similar to the one passed down to ministers of the Gospel today.
“Why are we happy about these graduates? What gives us such joy on this occasion? It’s because what was here assigned to John is what, by the call of God, is now assigned to them. They are to give knowledge of salvation to God’s people in the forgiveness of their sins,” Mohler said.
During commencement, Mohler also presented the Josephine S. and James L. Baggott Outstanding Graduate Award to Caleb T. Shaw, a master of divinity graduate from Glasgow, Ky.
The award is named after the Baggott family, who established a fund in 1980 to recognize an outstanding graduate of each graduating class.
The recipient is voted on by the members of the graduating class based on outstanding leadership, exemplary character and sound scholarship. The recipient receives an award from LifeWay Christian Resources and carries the seminary standard during the graduation procession.
Mohler’s entire address will soon be available in audio and video at Southern Equip.
For more information about Southern Seminary’s commencement, click here.
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Source: Baptist Press