Monday, May 16, 2005

Why Fuller...

Someone suggested that my recent problems with my peers was due to the fact that I've decided not to attend an Episcopal seminary. And it's true that there are a lot of things I'd get from Episcopal Seminary. But it's also true that the people at Fuller with whom I'm disagreeing are the Episcopalians. With others, we can at least see one another's point of view, even when we disagree. In fact, I get into much livelier debates with non-Episcopalians. The people from my denomination tend to roll their eyes at me or just tell me I'm wrong or just assume I'm too young to know whereof I speak.

All of which could be true. But that's another story.

Mainly I wanted to say that after my class on Thursday, a person I'd never spoken to walked up to me and asked if we could meet for lunch or coffee, simply to chat about my viewpoint. He is Pentecostal and simply had never heard ideas like those that I spout. Also, he confessed that he didn't like his gut reactions to words like "liturgy" (must be dead, dull). Since I'm obviously obssessed and in love with my church, he wanted to find out how to reconcile that with what he's always thought about high church.

And that, my friends, is why I am at Fuller. Not only because I want to learn from others who have insights I never would have thought of, but also because I'm secretly an Anglican spy who's sent there to bring others over to "our side." So far, it's working quite well.

What's my counter-mission?

6 comments:

Purechristianithink said...

Yup--I chose not to attend a denominational seminary and had similar enriching experiences. When time came for ordination exams my liaison at Presbytery helpfully warned me that, since I wasn't at a PCUSA seminary, I'd almost certainly need to take several of the exams multiple times before I'd pass. Hah! I passed them all the first go--unlike the others in my preparation for ministry co-hort. I'm convinced it was because I'd spent three years explaining to folks from very different backgrounds what the Reformed tradition is and why I liked it.

J. Brent Bates said...

Dear Feminarian,
I visited Fuller when I was looking at seminaries. I was impressed overall by the school, but was turned off by the rather large classes that I visited. I chose instead to go to a denominational seminary affiliated with Churches of Christ in West Texas where the classes were smaller and the scholarships better. I really enjoyed my experience there, despite its location. However, I am now leaving that denomination and becoming an Episcopalian. (Actually, next Sunday is my confirmation. You might be interested in my blog about this journey at www.pilgrimagetocanterbury.blogspot.com) While I really enjoyed my time at a seminary affiliated with my own denomination, I think there is great value at being at a school that is more diverse. So I think that was a good choice on your part. Will you have to do a semester or year at an Episcopal seminary at the end of your time at Fuller in order to be ordained anyway?

But I have one question: Do you think that perhaps the reason you are having conflicts with your fellow Episcopalian classmates has to do with the fact of what kind of Episcopalians would typically choose an evangelical seminary in the first place? (I'm not talking about you, but them.) It seems to me that you are having conflict not so much because YOU chose not to go to an Episcopal seminary, but more because of the nature of those Episcopalians that typically choose Fuller.

I hope this comes across right. If not, forgive my generalizing and neophyte insight.

The Feminarian said...

Brent--

Thanks for the pat on the back. Need it today.

I am not pursuing ordination (not yet anyway), so I'm not worry about taking those other classes. But I know others who, yes, are taking some classes at Claremont to make up for being at Fuller.

And your comment about the kind of people who go to Fuller is exactly what my husband says to me every time I start ragging on this subject. So you're right on, I suppose. But why did I go? The world may never know.

kate said...

I suppose your counter-mission is to bring back to Anglicanism those things you learn from people of other denominations. Coming from an Independent Baptist-turned-Anglican like myself, that it difficult for me to say (because it would be difficult for me to do), but you seem up to the task!

Anonymous said...

Posts removed.

Feminarian keep a listing of previous posts accessible to the public on her blog. These posts included comment sections.

Feminarian removed posts which took issue with her position. If her positions were misunderstood or mistated, she did not correc them. If her positions were correctly understood, she did not defend them.

Feminarian runs from debate.

The Feminarian said...

I've removed one post in all my time on blogger, and it was an advertisement, not anything to do with the blog, just spam. The way I did that seems to have disappeared.

I promise, I do not know how to delete posts anymore. I really wish I did.