There have been legal battles for over a year now. Is there any resolution to the seminary situation?
Moscow Theological Seminary (MTS) was established in 1993. Everything was very successful, but the last two years have been really challenging. We spent the first half of the year in court and the finalization of closing was done in June. State inspection revoked or cancelled our license for educational ministry. So the Seminary switched to the ministry of prayer.
What is the future then of the Seminary?
Seeing a government closure coming, back in 2019, MTS started a daughter organization (Theological Seminary in Moscow), to provide education for the next level...a continuation education program for ministry. And this year, the Moscow government gave us the license to this continuation branch of the seminary for ministry. So one license was canceled and another was granted. And with this license, students can receive a diploma as well. Actually it depends on what education you’ve already completed. If you have a college degree already then it will be a diploma. If you don’t have any college training, then it will be a certificate.
How is the new Theological Seminary in Moscow going?
We started in September and didn’t lose any students during this tumultuous time. In fact, it is growing, especially with distance education being so useful. And we will probably start one more school. So on one hand we lost a license and it seems sad, and it is, but it is not devastating or the end of the world. We will continue to train people whether we have a license or not. For now, we have a new open door to prepare and train and equip leaders for the Russian Baptist Union. This is like a restart for us.
It sounds like the Lord is continuing to build His church no matter what challenges come. Amen!