칼빈신학교 총장 내정자의 대회에서의 공식적 인터뷰 내용

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신학이야기

2010. 6. 19.

지난 번에 칼빈 신학교가 9월부터 새로운 총장을 모실 것이라는 소식을 CRC newsroom 기사를 이용해 전했습니다(http://blog.daum.net/wminb/13718750 참조). 이번 CRC 대회(Synod) 중인 2010년 6월 16일에 새로운 총장 내정자인 쥴리우스 메덴블릭(Julius T. Medenblik) 목사님과의 공식적인 인터뷰가 진행되었다는 소기이 올라왔기에 또 전합니다. 대회가 공식적 승인 이전에 대회의 공식적 인터뷰를 하는 과정을 지켜 볼 수 있고, 칼빈 신학교의 방향을 짐자하게 하는 인터뷰이기에 이전과 같이 올려 소개합니다. 볼드체로 고쳐진 부분 중심으로 읽으면 도움이 될 것입니다.

 Synod Ratifies Seminary President

available at: http://www.crcna.org/news.cfm?newsid=2018§ion=1

June 16, 2010 - A loud cheer filled the sanctuary of the Martin and Janet Ozinga Chapel on Tuesday night as Synod 2010 unanimously ratified the appointment of Rev. Julius T. Medenblik as the new president of Calvin Theological Seminary.

 

Synod 2010, the annual general meeting of the Christian Reformed Church in North America, is holding its deliberations on the campus of Trinity Christian College in Palos Heights, Ill., this week.

 

Synod set aside much of Tuesday night to interview Medenblik, the pastor of New Life Church in the Chicago area and a team leader in church planting and development for Christian Reformed Home Missions.

In an interview that lasted more than an hour, the questions were more personal than theological, geared to draw out his sense of himself in the new role.

 

Through it all, a picture emerged of the man who will succeed Rev. Cornelius Plantinga, Jr. in August of 2011 as leader of the Christian Reformed Church’s seminary.

 

Medenblik described himself as a strong family man who loves sports, especially the Chicago Cubs, and enjoys traveling. He said he tends to be serious and intense, but warm humor and a smile were evident as he answered questions.

 

Rev. Calvin Hoogendoorn, a delegate from Classis Iakota and a friend of Medenblik’s, conducted the first part of the interview before opening the interview up to all delegates.

 

Asked by Hoogendoorn to define some of the issues he will probably face as president, Medenblik said there is a need for distance learning in order to train ministers who are in the field and may find it hard to spend a significant amount of time in Grand Rapids.

 

Most of all, he said, he wants to continue to promote the atmosphere of cooperation, which is part of Plantinga’s legacy as president. “We are entering a new era in the church and we will need to listen to what the church body believes,” he said. “I would like to see more cooperation between the seminary and the agencies of the CRC. Beyond that, we need to develop partnerships with other groups and institutions.” Medenblik said he sees himself first and foremost as a man who has a gift for building relationships as a “faithful servant of God.”

 

As president he will lead an institution whose faculty is made up of many professors who hold PhDs in theology. Medenblik is a lawyer turned minister who hold a law doctorate degree as well as a Masters degree in divinity from Calvin seminary. His goal as seminary president will be to connect people, including the faculty, people in the church and people outside the CRC, for conversations about the role of the seminary.

 

“The health of a denomination is related to the health of its seminary,” said Medenblik. “I want the seminary to help define us as to who we are as a church. We want to train leaders who are theologically astute and are missionally oriented. We will use both our heads and our hearts … We will help people understand suffering,” he said.

 

He said the experience he brings to the presidency, to which he was appointed by the CRC’s Board of Trustees earlier this year, is of the practical variety – the kind a man gets by debating another attorney in a courtroom or by being one who, with his wife, started a new church almost from scratch in the Chicago area. “Being a lawyer taught me how to have a tough skin,” he said. Starting a new church required responses to a whole other set of challenges.

 

Medenblik did not speak at length about his accomplishments and made it clear that he will need the support of family and friends to succeed in the new position at the seminary. “For such a time as this, I will serve. You can’t do this alone.” Especially important will be helping to bring diversity to the seminary as members of the faculty retire, he said. He also wants to make sure that the CRC seminary remains true to its Reformed roots and also works hard to convey the Reformed worldview, which teaches that every square inch of the world belongs to God, to students in the 21st century.

 

Asked by a delegate what his Christian faith means to him, Medenblik said: “It means we keep going back to comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable.” Asked to define the role of a pastor, he answered: “A pastor is a voice, a person who welcomes people home to the church. A pastor is someone who realizes that God is seeking to build a communion of faith that reflects his own heart.”

-Chris Meehan, CRC Communications