“I was so interested in what was being taught I lost all sense of time. I was like a sponge. I couldn’t learn enough!”
The students of Yellowstone Theological Institute are a special type of person and come from all walks of life. From young college students and single moms to ministers and retired senior adults, the programs at YTI attract a variety of wonderful individuals. The common factor is that each of these people is looking for a deeper, more meaningful understanding of faith and life and for a contemporary instruction in ministry for the 21st century. As traditional seminaries are shutting their doors, students from all areas of our region and nation are seeking out what YTI has to offer.
YTI’s students are difference makers in their communities. They are a special type of person, coming from all walks of life. From young college students and single moms to ministers and retired senior adults, the programs at YTI attract a variety of wonderful individuals. The common factor is that each of these people are looking for a deeper, more meaningful understanding of faith and life, and, for a contemporary instruction in ministry for the 21st century. As traditional seminaries are shutting their doors, students from all areas of our region and nation are seeking out what YTI has to offer.
Students constantly apply their education where they live and work. They achieve a level of mentored education that many in older, more traditional programs cannot offer. These students are an asset to their places of work, their churches, and their families.
Students in the innovative master of divinity program are servants of the Kingdom of God for our world. Local churches, schools, sportsmen, outdoors enthusiasts, and lovers of the arts will benefit from the selfless service, witness, and love of YTI students.
In a postmodern world, the church becomes a movement. For many years, scholars have predicted the demise of the established, traditional church in western culture. The description of this ‘demise’, however, was specifically in regards to what is called the “Constantinian” church. In the Edict of Milan in 313 A.D., the Roman emperor Constantine legalized Christianity in the empire. By 380 A.D., emperor Theodotian had made Christianity the official religion of the empire. Together, these declarations had the effect of institutionalizing the church in society and culture.
However, the act of following Christ (Christianity) in the New Testament tells a different story. Essentially, Christianity is a movement at its heart. It is the story of the people who follow Christ in culture. The church, or better, the ekklesia – the “called out ones” – are those who have become and share the gospel in culture, thus creating more disciples. They are ‘called out’ from the world, but in the world.
They are called out for a specific task: to embody and emulate Christ in the world. Jesus, in John 9:5 says, “While I am in the world, I am the light of the world” and, “as you sent me into the world, I have sent them into the world” (John 17:18).
YTI students learn to engage the world, care for the world, and exist in the world while loving God in Christ. The very idea of the ‘church as movement’ is unique. Just as Jesus moved about Galilee, Samaria, the Decapolis, and Judea; and just as Paul moved around the Mediterranean world, living, sharing, and proclaiming the good news, YTI students learn that the church is a movement of the transformed heart in Christ. After this fashion, ‘church’ buildings become equipping stations and ministry points, but are not the center of the church’s activity. Worship ‘events’ of the gathered church are simply points in time that mark the landscape of daily worship. Our students know that worship occurs in the context of ministry in the world, as they seek to make disciples who are passionate about sharing the peace, justice, and reality of God in the world.