Dr. George O. Wood, general superintendent of the Assemblies of God, sent the following letter to ministers this morning:
The 16-member Task Force for the Consolidation of the three Springfield Assemblies of God residential schools met for the first time last week, under the leadership of Chairman George O. Wood. He opened the session with a discussion of the group’s five-part assignment and reviewed desirable outcomes, namely, that the work of the Task Force:
- Pleases the Lord both in terms of how it works and the result arrived at;
- Advances God’s Kingdom
- Invests strategically in generations of present and future students, equipping them for a life of service to Christ and His Kingdom, in the power of the Holy Spirit;
- Serves the needs of the Assemblies of God, the Pentecostal Movement, and the larger Christian world for well-educated and well-trained ministers and laity;
- Conserves the best values and DNA of each institution;
- Accomplishes the assignments given the Task Force to (1) draft a resolution for consolidation to present to the 2011 General council; (2) create a bylaw framework for the consolidated school; (3) provide for the initial narrative of a statement of core values and mission of the consolidated school, ensuring clear promotion of the mission statements of each school; and (4) design the organizational framework of the consolidated school—all being done in conformity to the requirements of the accrediting bodies and in a process of candid discussion and ultimate unanimous agreement;
- Fosters unity through the respective stakeholders in each institution;
- Deepens relationships and trust among Task Force members
Dr. Wood led the group as it discussed common language to use in this process. A variety of possibilities was mentioned on how collaborations come into being, and rationale was given on why the church’s Executive Presbytery chose the consolidation model for this venture.
“The word ‘consolidation’ was chosen carefully since it means ‘to unite’ in higher education,” Wood explained. “It is used to describe the uniting of two or more institutions that will result in a new one.”
Considerable time was given for each institution’s stakeholder group to discuss their understanding of the mission and core values of their institution. This resulted in a discussion of the many commonalities in shared values of the three schools the complementary missions of the three. The Task Force expressed the hope that the consolidation will address a Biblical understanding of spiritual and character formation to ensure that a Biblical position on ministry is an integral part of the consolidated university.
The Task Force organized itself around four working groups:
Mission: This assignment is to evaluate the current statements of mission and core values, giving consideration to the discussions of the Task Force, and propose a statement of mission and articulation of core values for the consolidated schools. Members: James Bradford, chair; Charles Self (AGTS) Fred Frank (CBC) and Arnold “Bud” Greve (EU)
Institutional Structure: To design a plan for the structure of the university in terms of its educational system and academic programs. These structures may be colleges, schools, divisions, departments, programs, centers, branch campus, extension programs, virtual campus, library, learning centers, etc. Further, to determine the nature of campus configuration in relationship to these structures. Members: Robert Rhoden, chair; Byron Klaus (AGTS); David Arnett (CBC); Robert Spence (EU).
Governance: To propose a plan for the consolidation of the three boards, including a plan for board organization and board work; the consolidation of the three administrations to provide management and operational effectiveness; and for the consolidation of the current faculties into a unified faculty with authority for educational policies and planning. Finally, to undertake a legal audit to determine if there are legal liabilities, restrictive obligations, government/professional regulations and if fund erosions result through consolidation. Members: George O. Wood, chair; Richard Dresselhaus (AGTS); Gary Denbow (CBC); John Lindell (EU).
Bylaws: To provide a draft of bylaws, to be authorized by the new board of trustees (directors) for ratification by the Executive Presbytery, reflecting the proposed statement of mission, proposed governance system, and institutional structures and any other matter that represents mandated authority. Members: Doug Clay, chair; Don Judkins (AGTS); Betty Johnson (CBC); Ted Pappit (EU).
Name of New University
Subject to the approval of external governmental and accrediting agencies, a motion prevailed unanimously to recommend to the respective Boards of Directors of the three schools that the name Evangel University be the name for the consolidated university and that the consolidated university embody structural elements that will honor the legacies and fulfill the missions of the Assemblies of God Theological Seminary, Central Bible College, and Evangel University.
The Task Force is comprised of the general superintendent as chair; 3 members of the Executive Presbytery; the board chairs of CBC and EU and vice-chair of AGTS board; the presidents of the three schools, one faculty member from each (chosen by vote of the faculty); and one non-credentialed donor from each.
George O. Wood