Frequently Asked Questions (Click Here to view this page in English)
What is the relationship between the Institute and the Concordia Seminary?
Concordia Seminary, through its Center for Hispanic Studies, offers a theological education program on two levels. By agreement with the Seminary, the Missionary Institute functions as a regional center for taking the Level 1 (pre-seminary level) courses. These are the Basic Theology courses offered at the Missionary Institute. On some occasions, seminary professors have taught Level 2 (seminary level) courses in the classrooms of the Missionary Institute. However, when students reach Level 2, they must enroll directly with the Center for Hispanic Studies.
What advantages do the Missionary Institute’s Basic Theology courses have?
At the Missionary Institute, all the Basic Theology courses have a missionary focus. Furthermore all our courses offer direct, healthy interaction between professors and students. With our Basic Theology program, a dedicated student (with few other commitments) can finish Level 1 in one year.
What disadvantages do the Missionary Institute’s Basic Theology courses have?
Most of the Basic Theology courses require a substantial time commitment on the student’s part (several hours in class each week). Some students don’t have the necessary time or dedication.
How long does it take to complete the entire Basic Theology program?
It depends on how many courses a student takes each semester. Full-time students can take 3 or 4 courses during each 8-week session and complete the entire program in one year (or one year and 2 months, if taking only 3 courses at a time).
However, few students have the time to take so many courses. Many students also work or have church and family commitments. These students take just 1 or 2 courses at a time, and thus take 2 or 3 years to complete the program.
In what language are the Basic Theology courses taught?
For now, all courses are taught in Spanish. In the future, we hope to offer courses in English.
Who can take Basic Theology courses from the Institute?
The Basic Theology courses are open for any Christian who is an active member of his or her congregation, who has the approval of his or her pastor, and who is able to study on the post-high school level. The following groups of people are particularly invited to enroll:
- People who wish to obtain the Diploma of Basic Theology.
- People desiring to take a single course at the Institute in order to fulfill a requirement in another theological education program.
- Pastors and other leaders who want to take quality “continuing education” courses. In particular, each year a number of pastors participate in the PRA 104 “Church Planting Seminar” course.
- Members of the congregation who would like to take courses for their personal enrichment and spiritual growth.
What other courses are offered, outside the Basic Theology program?
The Missionary Institute is developing courses that can be used in congregational Bible studies and in training congregational leaders for specific tasks. Presently, there are 3 courses available:
- God’s Plan—a short course on discipleship for congregations.
- Basic Teachings of the Bible—a course on the fundamental Christian doctrines.
- Hispanic Ministry for Beginners – a workshop for Anglos that wish to begin a Hispanic ministry or mission.
- God-willing, in October 2011 we will begin to offer courses for training Sunday school teachers, elders, etc.
Where does the Institute’s economic support come from?
The Missionary Institute is sustained by donations from individuals, congregations, and other institutions (for example, the Rocky Mountain District of the Lutheran Church).