Universal Life Church Free Minister Training - Seminary
AN OPEN LETTER TO CURRENT AND FUTURE SEMINARY STUDENTS
Rev. Lucinda Parker M. Min., D.Div.
We have all been called to service for many different reasons, bringing many different backgrounds and many different aspirations. And yet, as ethical, theological servants to humankind, we all have a need to broaden our knowledge base, for only then can we truly understand not only what we believe, but to understand what others believe.
It is this basic need for knowledge that has kept theological schools and seminaries in existence for hundreds of years. The ULC Seminary continues this long-standing tradition. While some denominations in the US require one to attend seminary first and then be ordained or called to serve, ULC allows us to answer our spiritual call of service and ordination first and to pursue our training second. And while this approach is “out of the box” I have found it most useful and practical.
Over the last two years I have completed 61 credits with the Seminary. For those of you with traditional higher education, you will thoroughly understand the statement, “I hate this class but it is required.” And yet, when completed, you realize that you really did learn something. Your mind was expanded. You can relate to someone else better than before you embarked upon the dreaded class. There are a few classes I have taken at the Seminary that I didn’t like. They were expanding my mind and making me think. It is akin to exercising when you have been a couch potato for twenty years. It HURTS! It is work. And yet, the classes were good. The thinking and forum postings were good.
One of the strong points of the ULC Seminary is the variety of classes. We are encouraged to truly broaden our knowledge of other theologies and other spiritual quests. There are two paths to follow in the Seminary. Not traditional curricular paths, but personal paths. One is learn for one’s self, to grow in our own spirituality. There are several classes designed for that and for some that may be enough. Spirit Quest is a great start for personal growth and discovery. The second path is the attainment of understanding of what others believe which enables us to better serve them from their point of view. These classes include Druidism, Paganism and Comparative Religion.
I strongly urge you to pursue at least one class from the ULCSeminary. Select the one that intrigues or interests you the most. Once a week you will receive a dose of knowledge and thought provoking exercise via email. Most of the classes include citations and bibliographies that list other readings or sites on the Web that only add to your quest of knowledge and understanding.
I am confident you will find the classes well written, well organized, and truly a path to wisdom. While no class or seminary can answer all personal questions of spirituality or theology, the offerings from ULC Seminary are well rounded. There truly is something for each of us.
Seminary Courses - This page has a list of courses, prices, credits, descriptions and samples of all the courses available, along with a direct link for where to sign up for each course.
Seminary Students - Here is a partial list of our seminary students. Not all students wish to be listed. There is a special blog and blog address we use to list the students, which you will be sent once you sign up. It's not required you be listed to be a student.
Seminary Graduates - This page lists the graduates of both the Seminary Program and the Chaplaincy Program. If you have graduated and are not listed, please let me know, as I do get behind and I occasionally forget to update things.
Course Essays - Once you finish a course, you will be required to write an essay in order to receive your degree. Our blog is full of essays written by our ministers, as well as stories of why people became ordained and occasionally a few kind words.
Chaplaincy Program - The Chaplaincy Program is a separate program from the Seminary program, although all courses you take during the Chaplaincy count towards seminary graduation. Click for more information.
Discussion Forum - This is where our ministers get together to talk about their courses, beliefs, share ceremonies and stories of their ministries. It's a great place to meet some ministers and see what being a ULC minister is all about.
Seminary Application - To apply to be a seminary student, this page has all you need to get the free mailings and the status of being a seminary student. You will get exclusive seminary student mailings along with samples of all the courses.
Minister Training - This section has a huge section all its own about different things ministers should know about conducting weddings and funerals, counseling, demons and other interesting information that will help you become a better minister.
FAQs - This is a wide selection of frequently asked questions about the Seminary, being a minister in general, and many pages about some of the many religions in the world and of our ministers. Your ministering abilities will be enhanced by knowing about the beliefs of others.
About Us - The ULC Seminary has been around since 2004 and is affiliated with the real, original Universal Life Church in Modesto, CA. To understand the differences between the various ULCs, which had a split in 2006 and another change in 2009 or so, go to Change of Site for a video and more information.