BA in Religion Program
Students will gain a knowledge of, and respect for Scripture, and specifically the fundamental beliefs, worldview, and mission of the Seventh-day Adventist church.
It is the mission of the Religion Department at Weimar Institute to prepare students for future ministry as pastors, teachers, missionaries, and administrators within the Seventh-day Adventist Church. Furthermore, emphasis is placed upon helping the student obtain a deeper, experiential knowledge of God through the rigorous study of Scripture and the development of spirit, mind, and body.
What will the instruction be like?
Mode of instruction is primarily a face-to-face, residential program with robust field experience related to the student’s specific degree or option chosen (Theology or Religious Studies).
Students taking the B.A. in Religion will meet their objectives through a combination of in-class lectures, internships and mentorship alongside pastors, faculty, and educators with opportunities for preaching, teaching, and sharing content learned in the classroom.
Students taking the Theology option will study biblical languages and take part in additional activities related to pastoral ministry and/ or academic research that includes but is not limited to church member visitations, conducting and/or observing church board meetings, leading out in church services, teaching Sabbath Schools, research and writing, mentoring under professors or instructors, and teaching in class settings.
Who should attend this type of program?
This program will prepare students who plan to attend graduate school, future pastors, teachers, professors, and church administrators.
Expected Outcomes for Successful Graduates
Students graduating from the Religion program will:
• Know the hermeneutical and exegetical principles necessary to correctly interpret Scripture, both the Old and New Testaments.
• Understand and know how to share the fundamental 28 beliefs and philosophy of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.
• Be experienced communicators and educators, necessary for future pastors, educators, and administrators.
• Have the necessary skills for research, writing, and analysis.
• Have the skills and passion necessary for successful evangelism in its various facets (canvassing, Bible work, etc.).
• Have the practical, pastoral, and leadership experience that is
indispensable to nurturing a church. Key experiences will include working alongside a seasoned pastor, preaching, counseling, visitations, and involvement in board meetings.
Religion Program Admission Requirements:
Students intending to complete a BA in Religion are required to meet the criteria noted in the general admissions policy of Weimar Institute (see section on General Education). Admissions requirements, include minimum levels of prior education, preparation, or training.
Students intending to use their BA in Religion degree to enter the ministry as pastors, chaplains, and educators are expected to have reputable character and a deep commitment to ministry and service. Furthermore a dedication to spirituality, healthy lifestyle, and ethical conduct is expected. These components are assessed in the application process through multiple references and an interview with the student.
Students expecting to graduate with a Religion or Theology degree with the intent of being a pastor must be formally admitted into the ministerial program, typically at the beginning of their sophomore year. Students may submit more than one application. The Religion Department faculty will determine whether or not the student qualifies for the program. Criterion for successful candidacy includes but is not limited to the following:
• Spiritual and theological commitment
• Ethical and social standing
• Academic ability (typically 3.0 GPA or higher)
• Emotional balance
• Dedication to service & ministry
• Social and professional competence
What type of employment or occupation is this program designed to prepare students for?
The B.A. in Religion degree will prepare the student for a variety of ministry, church, and education related occupations. Graduates from the program can expect to find employment as pastors, missionaries, teachers, and administrators within Seventh-day Adventist institutions. Graduates are also equipped to further their education with post baccalaureate degrees. However, Weimar Institute is not currently accredited, and entrance into any graduate-level academic program is at the discretion of the graduate institution. The Religion Chair is available to work with students regarding their specific needs and graduate possibilities.
The B.A. in Religion is composed of two options:
2. Religious Studies
A minimum of 128 semester credits is required for the degree, with expected completion in 4 years. The student pursuing the Bachelor of Arts in Religion will fulfill the general education requirements, including the practical, work education, and ministry-related components (see General Education section). In addition, students will take the specific core, cognate, and emphasis-related courses listed below.
Students will complete a minimum of 30 upper-division credits. Students taking the Religious Studies option must choose one or more minors offered by Weimar Institute in order to complete their degree.