Not everyone who desires to be equipped to become teachers of the Word of God can attend the Lutheran Theological Seminary in Baguio City. But many of our lay leaders (men and women) wish to undergo some theological training to prepare themselves for the work of the Lord in their respective places. So the Lutheran Church in the Philippines established the Theological Education by Extension (TEE) program.
In this program, lay workers can have their theological training by not going through the rigorous Seminary training for pastors which is for a term of five years. The instructions in the TEE are more simplified that suit the academic standard of the students. It is conducted in the students’ dialect, and the time is arranged according to their convenience. The TEE is purposely created for the church’s lay members and to those who are interested in entering the ministry but cannot be a full time student in the seminary. Courses offered under this program include the Old Testament Introduction, Introduction, Ministry in the Church, Homiletics or Sermon Preparation, Worship: How and Why, Biblical Interpretation and other Christian dogmatic subjects and Lutheran Confessions.
The TEE does not compete with the Seminary program nor undermine the theological program of LCP. It is an arm of the Church in ministry, in preparing and equipping church workers. It is not an inferior program, but it is considered the other arm of the theological education program of the Lutheran Church in the Philippines.
In 1973, the Seminary Board of Control formally adopted the following as objectives for the LCP TEE Program:
1. Primary, that through TEE more laymen within LCP be better equipped for the work of serving the Lord. This is not to imply any negotiation of the local pastor’s concern and responsibility to lead and feed his members in God’s Word. TEE then, is meant to compliment or add to, not replace the educational role of the pastor.
2. Secondary, that the students who have completed the required TEE curriculum on their particular level be sufficiently trained in order that the Districts and congregations recognize them for a specific office and function within their District and/or congregation.
The LCP-TEE Chairman is to oversee the whole TEE program of LCP in terms of resources, training, record-keeping, materials, etc. Among his duties would be to meet regularly with District TEE Coordinators, consulting and counselling with them in problematic areas of their district’s TEE program, especially to determine needs for translation of courses.
The Rev. Wilando Roa is now the LCP-TEE Chairman and is based at the Lutheran Theological Seminary in Baguio City. Those who are interested to attend TEE classes are encouraged to consult their pastors.