The Way of Wisdom: Faculty Voices - The Rev. Andrew G. Kadel

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The Way of Wisdom is a major initiative at The General Theological Seminary to integrate all the disciplines of formation in seminary education. Rather than separating education, formation and experience, The Way of Wisdom requires a complete blending of each. To read more about The Way of Wisdom, including Dean Kurt H. Dunkle's article, "Diving into the Deep End," go to www.gts.edu/wisdom. Every month, GTS News will feature one faculty member's reflection on The Way of Wisdom.

 

The Rev. Andrew G. Kadel

Director of the Christoph Keller, Jr. Library

The Way of Wisdom is, in fact, the calling of all Christian people to grow in understanding and deeper participation in the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Those who are called to attend seminary prepare to lead, teach, accompany, and assist others on this Way. Our goal at seminary is not to produce priests who have pre-made solutions to pre-determined problems. The faculty works along with the students to provide for the church wise, resourceful people who know how it feels to struggle to live on The Way of Wisdom and who know how to be companions to others following alongside.

The faculty introduces the students to voices they have never known existed—from the church of the second, third and fourth centuries, from the Middle Ages and the Reformation, and from more recent times. The community critically reflects on scripture—for instance, how it impacts women in the present and in the past, or how we might sort through the controversies of the present day and how the church has done so in many critical times in the past. Even philosophical, theological, and theoretical thinkers who might be more distant or abstract are engaged, so those voices are heard and understood, and their insights incorporated into the way of wisdom that is our life together. But none of this is just an academic or scholarly exercise, no matter how exciting that might be for some.

The Keller Library provides an opportunity to explore and listen to all manner of these voices—a cloud of witnesses far more diverse than any institution could have in person. The Library is a place of engagement with worlds of thought and spirit outside of one’s own head or feelings. We have designed the Library with places for quiet study and for lively conversation, so that those who use it can interact not only with texts, but with living people. The library staff is skilled at listening, understanding and explaining what the resources are and how to use them. We are a community that travels The Way of Wisdom together and the Christoph Keller, Jr. Library is a joyful part of it.