Every year, Calvin Theological Seminary faculty members recap in a written report their professional activities for the seminary’s Board of Trustees.
Besides their teaching, both residential and distance, professors are asked to recount their contributions to biblical and theological scholarship such as papers presented, conferences attended, articles or reviews written, and books published.
Because Calvin Seminary “is formed by and serves the church, God’s agent of hope for the world,” professors also give significant time and talent to the church, especially local congregations. Preaching and teaching are listed the most.
While many ordained professors are in the pulpit once a month on average, preaching ambassadors like Rev. Scott Hoezee and Rev. Jul Medenblik, president of the seminary, are likely to have only one Sunday a month or fewer when they are not delivering a sermon to a local congregation.
Professor Mariano Avila has been serving local Hispanic congregations with his preaching and teaching in Spanish.
Adult education classes are another avenue of service that offer professors an opportunity to present some of their classroom content to a broader audience.
This engagement with the local church helps faculty stay attuned to the needs, changes, and opportunities presented by church ministry.
Many professors listed a dozen different classes they had taught, some several weeks in duration. Although most often these connections occur within a 60-mile radius, some faculty members travel much further if their gifts match the invitation of a classis or regional educational event.
Such was the case recently when Jeff Weima, professor of New Testament, traveled to Cambridge, Ontario to present a workshop on “How to Read the Bible for All It’s Worth.”
Over 80 adult leaders from this region gathered for a full-day seminar promoted by the Cambridge Leadership Development Network.
In the morning, he led three sessions in which he laid out five key principles of interpretation, or how one ought to read the Bible.
In the afternoon session, Weima preached a sermon followed by a Q & A conversation to help participants uncover where and how in the sermon they heard the five hermeneutical principles taught in the morning sessions.
Sunday morning he preached from the stage of a theater where River City Church meets for worship. The weekend rounded out with an area-wide evening service held at Maranatha CRC in Cambridge. Weima’s sermon was entitled "A Professor's Prayer for the CRC.”