This article was originally published by Mennonite World Review

Seminary closes one chapter and begins another in Kansas

NORTH NEWTON, Kan. — Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary will begin a stepped-down level of involvement in central Kansas this summer, continuing to offer some courses while exploring additional ways to provide resources in the area.

AMBS has received accreditation approval for an “ongoing course offering site,” which will be named AMBS–Kansas Center. June 30 will mark the end of the current AMBS–Great Plains Extension and the beginning of AMBS–Kansas Center with a simpler structure.

The new program will offer one course each term — fall, interterm, spring and summer — for students pursuing a master’s degree from AMBS and students who wish to take occasional courses. Those pursuing a degree in ministry will be enrolled in the seminary’s distance program, Master of Divinity Connect.

Rebecca Slough, AMBS academic dean, reports that this new program will focus on courses especially applicable to churches in the area, including rural ministry and faith formation in the context of the prairies.

In addition to the master’s level courses, AMBS–Kansas Center will explore ministry and theological resources in partnership with organizations and institutions in the region, including Anabaptist-related colleges and Western District and South Central conferences. These partnerships and continuing education options will be pursued in the next months.

An administrative team is being formed to guide the work of AMBS–Kansas Center with members representing churches and organizations in the area and AMBS.

A celebration of AMBS–Great Plains Extension and the earlier Conference-based Theological Education program is set for 4 p.m. June 1 at Bethel College Mennonite Church. The event will include a service of thanksgiving for the ministry and theological resources offered over the last 34 years, along with celebration of the beginning of AMBS–Kansas Center.

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