Mentoring in a local church is an essential component of seminary training, complementing the classroom. At Shepherds, that mentoring will be done in three ways: 1) at the campus church, 2) at other approved churches in Gauteng, 3) at the student’s home church, if that church’s doctrine is evangelical and its mentoring supports the training the student is receiving in the classroom.
Students who already live in the Gauteng area will not be required to stop attending their home church if their church’s doctrine is evangelical, and if their home church is able and willing to fulfil the mentoring requirements of the seminary. If the student’s home church is either unable or unwilling to fulfil those requirements, the student will be required to attend an approved church, which will mentor him while he is in the programme.
International students and students from other parts of South Africa will be required to attend an approved church in Gauteng during their training.
We will ask and equip churches to mentor students in the following kinds of ways:
- attending membership classes, joining and becoming an active member
- join in a full range of Sunday corporate worship and ministries
- attend regular member and business meetings
- observe the practice of church discipline
- participate in midweek small groups and youth group, etc.
- observe regular church staff meetings and regular elder’s meetings
- observe diaconal work
- have teaching/preaching opportunities, followed by constructive feedback
- observe a pastor in sermon preparation, service planning and song selection, preparing pastoral prayer, review of Sunday services, practice of biblical counselling, discipling, mentoring, conflict resolution, home visitation, hospital visits
- accompany a pastor at fraternals, church plants, outside ministry opportunities, camps, conferences, seminars
- be hosted in members’ homes, observe godly marriages and families, family worship, etc.
- reading with their pastor through key additional books on pastoral ministry and practical ecclesiology