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Posts posted by RevTom

  1. I was going through some old memories and keepsakes yesterday, hunting for my Certificate of Ordination from ULC. Alas, I couldn't find it, and will have to pay for another one. While hunting though, I came across some sermons that I preached when I first entered the ministry (1967, UMC, LaGrange Ga district, North Ga Conference). My mother kept all my sermons - I wrote them down for the minutes of the church. She saved them and put them in a binder. It was pleasant remembering the days when I first was called to the ministry. I have wavered back and forth since then, but find myself once more being called, and going back to my roots. Much has changed since those days, but the need for spiritual fulfilment remains strong for people, and I hope to be a worthy vessel to help fill that longing.

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  2. 8 hours ago, Jonathan H. B. Lobl said:


    That was interesting.  Thank you.  


    Do you see a trend here?

    I think that most colleges - at least those large enough to afford the accrediting fees - and I had no idea it was so expensive for colleges to maintain accreditation - will continue to retain their accreditation with the state agencies: I think the use of other accrediting bodies will be for those smaller colleges whose finances are marginal, and the ones that use spurious or no accrediting agencies mostly - but not always - are colleges you should be very wary of. Tyndale, which from what I understand is a respected college, refuses to submit to any accreditation at all. Bold Christian University is the same way, and it is an international long distance learning college.

  3. On 5/9/2017 at 0:50 PM, mererdog said:

    You can teach math and it can have nothing to do with religion. You cant teach religion without religion. That's sort of obvious, isn't it? Give government authority over religious education, and you give government authority to pick and choose what can be taught and how. This gives them authority to say we can only be taught from a Catholic Bible, or that anyone who isn't a Baptist is unqualified to teach the Bible. 

    As for compelling interest, the Bill of Rights exists because there are things where principle should always trump practical concerns.

    Also, for the record, Harvard Divinity School describes itself as non-sectarian, not secular. 

    There was actually legal action regarding this in Texas a few years back the outcome of which the Texas Supreme Court issued the decision that government has no place in legislating religious credentials and requirements in the case brought before it, H.E.B. Ministries v. Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. The school in question, Tyndale, does have actual degree programs, however, with the normal course requirements expected of any degree program. The same is true of Bold Christian University. Some schools have no state recognized accreditation, but do have recognized religious body accreditations.

  4. 8 hours ago, Jonathan H. B. Lobl said:


    That was impressive.  You do good work.  

    Thanks - I just like to validate the options and possibilities for people. While I think it is disappointing the degrees at ULC are virtually worthless academically, there are avenues to get valid PhDs and other degrees and retain our church affiliation here at ULC. Maybe some type of partnering with one of the accredited colleges and ULC would be good?

  5. 30 minutes ago, Jonathan H. B. Lobl said:


    I'm not in a position to say how easy the work is.


    To be useful, the accrediting agency must be, in turn, recognized by the U. S. Dept. of Education. Unless of course, you plan to work for a church that does recognize the accrediting agency.  


    None of them are doctoral programs.  

    Wesley Theological Seminary has a Doctor of Ministry program, and is accredited by The Association of Theological Studies, which is recognised by the US Dept of Ed. The School of Divinity at Regent University offers several Doctorate degrees, and is accredited by Association of Theological Schools (ATS) and regionally by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, recognized by U.S. Dept of Ed.

  6. 40 minutes ago, Jonathan H. B. Lobl said:


    Please -- some examples.  I would like to know what you think of as being ridiculously easy.  You did say, accredited?

    Off the top of my head, I will cite a school I went to online- nothing to do with theological studies, but I have seen that as well, and will hunt for them. It has been a while since I looked into online degrees, but I get the spiels form various institutions all the time in my email. Cleveland Institute of Electronics is the online school I took lessons from online. They do have an extensive study program, and have one of the best reputations, but still, I found the coursework to be pretty easy, although very intensive and involved. Grace Bible College is one of the schools I have been recommended to, and they supposedly are accredited by HLC and ABHE.  Trinity College of The Bible and Wesley Seminary are others.

  7. 28 minutes ago, Jonathan H. B. Lobl said:


    No.  You're not wrong.  They would have to start from the ground up.  It's not going to happen.  


    The ordinations and the honorary D.D.s are court tested.  Beyond that -- caution.  You don't want to be the one who makes history.  



    Realistically speaking, accredited degrees are ridiculously easy to get in some schools, especially online. They are mostly open book exams, and this takes some of the value away from them. It is a matter of what you put into your field of study and self research that will make the difference in your field.

  8. 13 minutes ago, RevTom said:

    I am sorry to hear about Rev Al. I couldn't find anything about him here, (no content, etc) but if it is who i believe, he was another mentor to me.

    I just learned that Rev Al and Atwater Vitki are one and the same. It is with tears that I learned of his passing. He truly was a mentor to me, and it is with his guidance and tireless prodding that I came to join the discussions and actively participate. 

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  9. I wonder if ULC would be at all interested in developing real coursework and legitimacy for the "earned degrees"? Would ULC be interested in developing real programs with real degrees and applying for accreditation with one of the recognized accrediting bodies? Would that be a monumental task with which ULC would not want to ascribe to? It seems taking that course would help resolve some of the legal issues with ministerial accreditation for us as well in states that do not recognize us.

  10. On 7/27/2017 at 4:39 AM, Amulet said:

    Oh wow that is fantastic! Is your artwork mostly in the fantasy genre? How long did this one take you to complete?

    This was about two hours, if I remember correctly. The time spent was mostly in the dress with all its crinkles and lace. It is not hard, but time consuming.

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