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Photo by Ousa Chea on Unsplash
Photo by Ousa Chea on Unsplash
World News

£60,000 given to UK theological colleges to add science to their curriculum

by Lydia Davies

Four theological colleges across the UK and the Republic of Ireland have been awarded up to £60,000 each by the Equipping Christian Leadership in an Age of Science (ECLAS) project.

The funding is intended to support the development of teaching resources that blend science, ethics, and theology into their core curriculum.

Based at St John's College, Durham University, ECLAS aims to equip ministers with a sound understanding of science through its Science for Seminaries programme.

The colleges participating this year are Birmingham Christian College, Coleg y Bedyddwyr Caerdydd/Cardiff Baptist College, Regent's Park College and Trinity College Dublin.

This marks the first time Baptist colleges have participated in the scheme.

Each college will plan unique approaches to integrate science into their theological studies.

For instance, Regent's Park College will produce resources engaging with the scientific endeavours of key Baptist figures.

Birmingham Christian College will infuse its Environmental Stewardship module with scientific engagement.

Cardiff Baptist College is pioneering a 'befriend a scientist' shadowing programme, while Trinity College Dublin plans to include working scientists in discussions on hermeneutics and cosmology.

Professor David Wilkinson is the director of Equipping Christian Leaders in an Age of Science. He told Premier Christian News: "For a number of years now, we've been working at supporting Christian leaders in terms of seeing science not as a threat or negative towards faith, but as a gift from God.

"We don't simply want to teach church leaders science, we want to give Christian leaders a sense of confidence that the Christian gospel can engage with some of these questions".

When asked if there is a risk of scientific education negatively affecting Christian theology, he responded: "By bringing science and faith into conversation, I've found that my excitement with being a Christian and my excitement of being a scientist has increased".

Rev William Kugbeadjor, principal of Birmingham Christian College, noted that integrating ecological insights into their Environmental Stewardship module would empower church leaders to address environmental issues within their congregations and communities.

Rev Dr Rosa Hunt and Rev Dr Ed Kaneen, co-principals at Coleg y Bedyddwyr Caerdydd/Cardiff Baptist College, are thrilled to equip their students with confidence in and enthusiasm for science.

Professor Sir Malcolm Evans, principal of Regent's Park College, said: "Our ministerial students will benefit hugely from greater exposure to the wealth of local scientific expertise that is available here in Oxford".


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