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Leonard Allen, dean of Lipscomb's College of Bible & Ministry, announces the Pastoral Leadership Program on Oct. 28.
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Lipscomb receives $1 million grant to launch Pastoral Leadership Program

The new program, set to begin next fall, will allow students to earn undergraduate and graduate pastoral degrees in five years.

Lipscomb University in Nashville, Tenn., is launching a new accelerated master’s program in pastoral studies thanks to a grant from the Kern Family Foundation.

The university, which is associated with Churches of Christ, made the announcement Thursday.

The Wisconsin-based foundation awarded $1.07 million to Lipscomb’s College of Bible and Ministry for its 4+1 Pastoral Leadership Program, which will allow students to earn both a bachelor’s degree in pastoral leadership and a master’s degree in pastoral studies in five years. In the fourth year, participants in the program will complete requirements for both degrees simultaneously, making the reduced timeline possible.

The college will enroll the first group of students to the program next fall and hopes to fill the 32 spots that will be available. Over the course of the following five years, those students will take courses in theology and spiritual formation along with conflict management, community engagement, entrepreneurship and business as mission. They’ll also take trips to Italy and Israel and participate in local church internships.

Leonard Allen, dean of the Bible college, said in a press release that the program will help prepare young people to be the future leaders of the church in a time when important roles are being left unfilled.

“Our culture has shifted significantly over the last decade,” he said. “Fewer young people are pursuing careers in ministry, and at the same time, churches are increasingly ill equipped to help young people discern their Christian vocation. It will take a deliberate effort to reverse this decline.”

Steve Bonner, chair of Lipscomb's Undergraduate Bible Department, speaks at the Pastoral Leadership Program announcement Oct. 28.

Steve Bonner, chair of Lipscomb’s Undergraduate Bible Department, speaks at the Pastoral Leadership Program announcement Oct. 28.

Similarly, the college’s assistant dean, Steve Bonner, said the program is part of a larger strategy undertaken by the undergraduate Bible department he chairs to adapt to the current needs of students and the church.

“This new program responds to the changing cultural landscape and the changes occurring within churches (and) will deliver an affordable and rigorous education that graduates Christian leaders who are well-formed, resilient and biblically grounded so they may integrate faith, work and economic wisdom for the good of a community,” Bonner said.

Visit Lipscomb’s website for more information about the program.

Filed under: Bible studies Christian colleges Kern Family Foundation Leonard Allen Lipscomb University News Partners Steve Bonner Top Stories

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