One of my aims in starting Faithroots was to provide a teaching and training resource for those who wanted to dig deeper into aspects of Bible teaching, theology, practical pastoral care and leadership. I believe that there are a lot of people who would both welcome and benefit from further training for Gospel work but for various reasons but would not be able to access residential theological training at places like Oak Hill and Union (brilliant though they are). There are three primary reaons for this.
- Money: It is simply very expensive to study at a seminary when you factor in tuition fees and accommodation. Unless you’ve saved up a lot of money or have a church and friends with deep pockets then it’s likely to be beyond your means.
- Time: It could be that you are looking to study a bit further whilst you continue to work or you are already engaged, knee deep in church planting and revitalisation. You simply do not have the luxury of being able to up sticks and move to another town to study.
- Culture: like it or not or theological colleges have them and if we are honest are best suited to supporting graduates with previous university degrees from middle class backgrounds. That excludes a lot of people who have much to give and will benefit from training.
So, I’ve personally, with others got a bit of a dream to see lots of churches working together to provide training for those who can’t go to seminary. The aim is to provide a focus on context based vocational training with lots of opportunities for practical experience but not skimping on the rigour of study. I suspect that eventually that will look like lots of in context variation in terms of input but agreed standards and a means of assessing outcomes. I plan to reshare some old stuff on this and new stuff in the coming weeks.
However, today I wanted to highlight how Faithroots seeks to contribute resources for you to make use of in your own study and training. I hope that what I offer here will be helpful whether you are a planter, pastor, elder, children’s worker or ministry leader. You’ll have already come across the blog where I try to model engaging Biblically with contemporary issues. However you may not have had the opportunity to check out some of the other resources on offer. These include
Publications. Here you’ll find a couple of sets of E-books in PDF format. I’m building up a series of booklets introducing Christian doctrine with a pastoral focus. So far you can read up on the doctrines of Revelation, God and Creation. I’m currently working on something relating to the Doctrine of Humanity with stuff on New Creation to come.
Faithroots TV and Faithroots Live offer video content from YouTube and Facebook including some training workshops and seminars as well as some short talks on anything from how to pray through to facing emotional health challenges.
A little while back I realised that more people would prefer to download and listen to something than to either read or watch. So I began recording The Daily Dose which is an unscripted Bible exposition where we open up a Bible passage each morning to look at together. These talks last between 20-30 minutes and are available on Faithroots Audio.
Whatever your context I hope you find these resources useful Please do give feedback and pass on the links to others. I’ve opened the comments section and would love to hear from you if training is a particular concern of yours.