On the afternoon of December 6, 2021, CCC&TSPM and Trinity Theological College (TTC), Singapore, jointly held a virtual meeting on theological education. The two sides had a cordial feeling as it has been the first interaction over video conferencing since the new TTC leadership was formed in July 2020. Attendees from TTC included Principal Rev Dr. Edwin Tay, Academic Dean Rev. Dr. Lim Teck Peng, Registrar Rev. Dr. Leonard Wee, and Dr. Chan Yew Ming.
In the opening remarks, Rev. Dr. Edwin Tay expressed his delight in the conversation with CCC&TSPM through virtual meeting. There has been profound friendship between TTC and CCC&TSPM. Over the past three decades, TTC welcomed overseas students sent by CCC&TSPM for further study, which made it possible for the college to engage in the theological education ministry of the Church in China, with great privilege and responsibility alike.
President of CCC Rev. Wu Wei said that he felt glad to meet up with Singapore friends virtually. CCC&TSPM and TTC has maintained a long, friendly relationship. The student dispatch program that valued theological training and kicked off since 1993, has been beneficial to a large number of Chinese fellow workers who are now serving churches and seminaries across the country. Rev. Wu pointed out that TTC is gifted of professional faculty and rich resources, and hoped that it would become a blessing to churches not only in Asia but in the rest of the world as well.
At the virtual meeting, Rev. Shan Weixiang, Vice President and General Secretary of CCC, introduced the ministry of theological education in China. Currently the country has 22 seminaries and bible colleges, with more than 3,300 students and no less than 1,000 graduates each year.
CCC&TSPM has been attaching importance to the standardization of the work in theological education. Great efforts have been made in enhancing the development of faculty members of seminaries and bible schools, standardizing their teaching materials, valuing the ongoing training for senior clergy who may leave the seminary or bible school for years, and recommending pastoral staff to further their study in overseas seminaries. Thanks to the collaboration with TTC, the number of faculty members who have studied in TTC has exceeded 20. They are now teaching in 11 seminaries and bible colleges in China.
Afterwards, Rev. Dr. Lin Manhong, Associate General Secretary of CCC, presented the basic introduction to Nanjing Union Theological Seminary (NJUTS). With 21 full-time teachers, NJUTS has cultivated undergraduates, postgraduates, doctoral students and over 30,000 students of correspondence courses. The seminary owns the largest number of seminarians of the country. In the future, NJUTS is planning to expand the faculty team and promote its teaching quality. Meanwhile, it expects to continue the cooperation and exchange with TTC.
Later, Rev. Dr. Edwin Tay shared TTC’s updates involving how to carry out online teaching, and to digitalize the library under the pandemic, as well as how to counter the impact of pandemic on theological education in an active manner.
Ms. Gu Jingqin, interim Chief of Overseas Relations Department of CCC&TSPM, moderated the virtual meeting.
Translated and edited by Bei Sang.