Studying at Protestant University


#1

I attended the 15th National Catholic Conference in Anahiem a week ago and one of the speakers was Michael Barber. He said he was studying for a phd at Fuller Theological Seminary. If I am not mistaken, that is a Protestant seminary. Why would a Catholic apologist be studying at a protestant seminary?


#2

Why not ask/e-mail him? Perhaps he’s a recent convert who happens to have a large scholarship to use up. I don’t know him, so anything I’d offer is just wild speculation.


#3

Good idea. He’s one of Scott Hahn’s friends and “understudy” I believe. If I can get a hold of his email address I’ll send him an email.


#4

I dont know the answer to the OP’s Question, but I have had a question that has bothered me.
When a protestant pastor is going for a theological degree how does he learn the historic faith when they downplay the Councils and Early Church Fathers and such? I have always tried to figure out what exactly they are learning especially on the PhD level if they ignore so much history and teachings held since early times?


#5

I went to the National Conference too, so if I knew you there I would have said hi, but at least here I can say hi. Did you get to participate in the Sunday Mass they held?

I had a chance to talk to Michael at the Saint Joseph Communications booth and yes that is a Protestant seminary, he also attended another Protestant college for a couple years, then went to Fransiscan University at Stuebenville and now is completing his Doctorate at Fuller.

He is Catholic, he says he just loves the Bible and some of the very best Old Testament professors are Protestant, he might not agree with their interpretations but shares their love for the Bible.

I bought the CD set from Saint Joseph Communications called “The Bible is a Catholic Book” in which he says a little bit about this. He is a nice guy and is one of a few Catholics who attend Fuller.

God Bless
Scylla


#6

[quote=Mt19:26]I attended the 15th National Catholic Conference in Anahiem a week ago and one of the speakers was Michael Barber. He said he was studying for a phd at Fuller Theological Seminary. If I am not mistaken, that is a Protestant seminary. Why would a Catholic apologist be studying at a protestant seminary?
[/quote]

Hi Mt19:26!!!

We attended that conference too, and I heard Michael Barber speak also! I think he’s wonderful. Was it on the panel where he said this? I heard him briefly discuss getting his PhD. I think it was too, but I don’t remember where he said he’s going. I don’t think he lives in L.A. so it couldn’t be right!! But you’re right, I do not think a Catholic would ever think of obtaining an advanced degree at a Prot. Seminary. Do you know they used to have some Catholic professors at Fuller until fairly recently?

P.S. Do you live in Orange County?

God Bless~~


#7

Hi Sparkle- I was also at the Conference and at Michael’s talk (who knows-we might have been sitting right next to each other :slight_smile: ).

Anyway, I don’t remember him saying why he went to Fuller, but I do remember him saying that he and a few other Catholics were attracting a lot of sympathetic attention there by speaking up for the Faith, clearing up misconceptions, and providing alternative Catholic views that, by and large, seemed to intrigue the Protestant majority there. He said that he was even able to publish at least one article in the school journal or newspaper. So even though its not clear why he enrolled, he seems to be making a difference by attending.

(Great conference by the way. It was our third time and my wife and I can’t wait until next year)


#8

I also attended the conference with my daughter. Saw Michael at the panel discussion, but didn’t attend his other talks. I missed the part about his attending a Protestant Seminary for his PhD. I think it’s great that he’s in a position of challenging their misconceptions about what it means to be Catholic.

I hope that his own understanding of the Catholic Interpretation of Scripture doesn’t get confused as he’s formed in a Protestant environment. I pray that he doesn’t allow Pride to influence his formation.

What I also wish is that I’d known there were going to be other Forum people at the conference. We should have made arrangements to meet at a specific time, perhaps Sat or Sun Lunch and we could have all had an opportunity to meet one another. We could have added our Forum Handle to our name tags for the lunch. It would have been a great way to put a face, a person to the handle.

Oh well, perhaps next year I’ll be able to go again. I’d like to but it’s a 10 hr drive, and I’ll be working.

CARose


#9

Maybe next year we should start a thread so that some of of will have an unofficial Catholic Answers meet!

There was a sign for Catholic Answers there but is seems they didn’t make it, or I missed them.

Re: Michael Barber,
As some of you said, he is sharing his faith at Fuller and even has witnessed a “coming home” there of a student to Catholicism. He is very well grounded in his faith and just seems to be in love with sharing it (doing what we are all called to do.)

He just seems to have a lot of guts to be able to go to Fuller, good for him, I really wish him the best.

God Bless
Scylla

(I was there with my wife and 2 kids, we had a great time even though my kids didn’t let us stay for many talks, Mass went smoothly with the kids, then per Scott Hahns advice, we went to an amusement park Sunday afternoon.)


#10

My daughter (13 yrs) was excellent. She opted to stay with me the entire weekend, rather than attend the teen track alone. We went to two of the speakers on the teen track, the one basketball dribbler, and Carolyn King Baber (from Wall Street to Rome). They were quite good. I chatted briefly with Carolyn, went to another of her talks and purchased her tape series.

I only missed one track I wanted to go to due to my daughter being “burnt out”.

The track I took in of Michael’s didn’t overly impress me. Perhaps it was because at the earlier Scott Hahn seminar which was standing room only there was an empty seat next to two other empty ones, one of which was being saved with a stack of tape sets and another that the person was periodically using. We shared the one open adjoining seat, she sat on my lap, but finally I moved the tapes and had her sit on a portion of this unused seat. When the young man returned, I asked if it would be ok that we moved the tapes to the floor so a person could use the seat, indicating my daughter and he picked them up and left in a huff. (mind you, I asked nicely, at least I thought I did, and there were a bunch of people standing to hear Scott’s presentation).

It turns out it was Michael. Perhaps my perception of him was colored from there on.

I took my daughter to DisneyLand with her cousin and my sister-in-law on Tuesday. We had a great time there. Did you see the fireworks from Main Street. What did you think of the light show on the castle! It was awesome!

CARose


#11

[quote=Catholic Dude]I dont know the answer to the OP’s Question, but I have had a question that has bothered me.
When a protestant pastor is going for a theological degree how does he learn the historic faith when they downplay the Councils and Early Church Fathers and such? I have always tried to figure out what exactly they are learning especially on the PhD level if they ignore so much history and teachings held since early times?
[/quote]

Please don’t generalize about Protestants. As you guys like to point out, we vary widely from each other. There are plenty of Protestants who do not ignore church history at all, and obviously those of us who study it at the Ph.D. level are going to be in that camp. Some Protestant seminaries give church history (at least pre-Reformation church history) short shrift, others do not. I’ve done a lot of browsing the websites of both Catholic and Protestant institutions (I’m at the stage of applying for jobs, and of course I always want to see what a prospective employer already has in the way of church history faculty) and I haven’t noticed that Catholic schools, on the whole, have a stronger church history faculty than Protestant schools. (Granted, Catholics will hopefully pay serious attention to the pre-Reformation traditions of the Church when studying other subjects, and many Protestants may do so less.) Indeed, a Protestant could argue that Protestants are better positioned to do justice to church history, because we are not as firmly committed to interpreting the past through the lens of current dogmas. That would be unfair, but it would have as many kernels of truth as the stereotype you engage in.

Avoid stereotypes. They really don’t accomplish anything. I understand that many folks live in parts of the country where most of the Protestants you encounter are anti-Catholic fundamentalists. But please don’t let that experience shape your view of Protestantism as a whole. Catholics and Protestants have a lot to learn from each other. It’s quite common for Catholics to teach or study at Protestant schools and vice versa. And this is a very good thing, in my opinion.

Edwin


#12

Hi All,

Always interesting comments. I am from South Africa and there is no under graduate degree available in the country on a part time basis from a Catholic Institute. The only degrees that the Church offers here are post graduate degrees. I am, therefore, doing my Theology degree through a Protestant University (UNISA - University of South Africa). There is nothing wrong with the degree, however, it does not do things like liturgy, canon law, Marionology and things that are close to our hearts as Catholics. They make sure not to offend any religions - which is good, however I would far prefer learning about the teachings from my church.

Does anyone know of a Catholic University that offers a correspondence under graduate degree in theology?

Thanks,


#13

[quote=RobertinRSA]Hi All,
Does anyone know of a Catholic University that offers a correspondence under graduate degree in theology?
[/quote]

Robert, check out Franciscan University in Steubenville, Ohio:

franciscan.edu/home2/Content/DistanceLearning/main.aspx?id=664&cat=119


#14

And if you don’t already know of it, Franciscan University is the BEST! I wish I’d known of it when I was college aged.

CARose


#15

Thanks FCEGM,

I had a look at the site and they offer interesting courses. However, I think that I will remain with the course that I am busy with. I pay R450/ module here, equates to USD67.16. Franciscan College charges USD525/ credit hour, which will be R3517.50!!! Exchange rate does not work in my favour. Anyway my plan is to do a post graduate degree through the Catholic University when I am finished with my undergrad studies.

God bless.


#16

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