The Boards of Regents of Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne (CTSFW), and Concordia Seminary, St. Louis (CSL), held a joint board meeting Aug. 8–9 in Fort Wayne, Ind.
The Rev. Dr. Ron Garwood and the Rev. Todd Peperkorn, chairmen of the CTSFW and CSL boards, respectively, spoke highly of both schools and their presidents, the Rev. Dr. Lawrence R. Rast Jr. (CTSFW) and the Rev. Dr. Dale A. Meyer (CSL).
“I want to commend Dr. Dale Meyer and Dr. Lawrence Rast for their leadership, which has helped the two seminaries work together even more closely over the last triennium,” said Garwood. “The seminaries collaborated to host a joint reception and a joint welcome booth at the Synod convention this summer.
“Our faculties and boards, through ongoing dialogue, jointly submitted a number of overtures this year as well, and we look forward to continuing close cooperation as our seminaries work to prepare faithful and loving pastors for our Synod.”
“As an alum of CTSFW while serving on the CSL board,” said Peperkorn, “it is a particular joy for me to be on campus in Fort Wayne, seeing my new friends and colleagues working so closely with the school that formed me as a pastor. We have an almost unprecedented opportunity to shape the church of the future with the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
“We hear in Proverbs that ‘Iron sharpens iron, and one man sharpens another.’ It is my prayer that our work together will continue to strengthen both schools, and that more men will be formed as pastors in the years to come.”
Among their actions, the boards agreed to establish a formal process for their leaders to meet regularly, in addition to the bylaw-established annual meeting of the joint board. This leadership group will help increase dialogue and coordination between the seminaries and assist in setting the agenda for the joint meeting.
During this year’s joint meeting, LCMS Chief Mission Officer Rev. Kevin Robson talked to the boards about matters before the Pastoral Formation Committee, including the comprehensive church-worker recruitment initiative being planned by the Synod, seminaries, Concordia University System and districts. The boards also discussed cultural changes facing the church and their effect on the work of the seminaries.
Additional presentations came from Rast, who spoke on “Sustainable Futures: Recognizing and Confronting the Challenges Facing Christian Colleges and Universities,” and LCMS Mid-South District President Rev. Dr. Roger Paavola, who spoke on “The 10 Tsunamis Impacting Ministries: How Do We Survive What’s Coming?”
Rast and Meyer also gave a joint presentation on the state of the Synod and its seminaries, affirming that while the church continues to face many challenges, “Our Lord is faithful, and He will see us through … just as He has in the past.”
Posted Sept. 18, 2019