Church leadership shortage is top focus for Ukrainian seminary
Ukrainian Evangelical Theological Seminary (UETS) was founded in 1992. The interdenominational seminary desires to combine academic excellence with practical ministry skills, particularly in Christian counseling and management, and to develop a library that will be a research center for Eastern Europe and Central Asia. UETS’ vision is to produce godly men and women providing leadership in political, legal and social arenas, as well as qualified and experienced national lecturers.
UETS plays an important role in training pastors and lay leaders. In response to the current leadership crisis in the Church, the seminary recently formed a Master of Arts in Transformational Leadership. The program provides biblical principles for spiritual leadership, character, organizational skills and interaction with social and political structures. UETS is also working on a semi-annual theological journal to provide scientific and practical research on topics relevant to church leaders in their various ministries. In addition, UETS holds an annual Theological Forum with OC’s four other Ukrainian partners (DCU, KCU, OTS and ZBCS), bringing together 150+ leaders last year.
More than 70 percent of UETS’ 400+ graduates hold leadership positions in local churches, and students represent 17 denominations in Ukraine and other post-Soviet countries. Not only is UETS a strategic educational center, it is also a “center of light” through its community counseling program and family and soup kitchen for the poor.
Graduate Oleg Frolov has been involved with youth projects in Crimea “that have filled our church with many people.” He currently organizes the Alpha Course Ministry, providing meals to unbelievers who ask questions about Christianity. Oleg is also a pastoral assistant and states, “I’m thankful to God that He brought me to UETS…The knowledge that I received is an integral part of the ministry I do.