Announcing the Hispanic Adventist Center for Theological Dialogue


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It is a distinct pleasure to announce to the Adventist community around the world the formation of a new organization whose function is to promote the theological development of the Spanish-speaking professorate. It has been a long-cherished hope to have an agency that facilitates the sharing of results of personal studies, the giving of advice, the resolution of uncertainties, and that facilitates mutual edification among Hispanic Adventist theologians.

It is not uncommon for professors of theology to find themselves isolated in an Adventist educational institution without conversation partners with whom to share the insights gained from their studies. No doubt, professors do not teach everything they know or think, but it is to be expected that throughout their years of service they do not cease studying and learning. Ideas, however, need to be brought to the light to be evaluated by others. It is indispensable, therefore, to have with whom to respectfully and openly dialogue and receive from them suggestions and reactions to what personal study brings out.

The recognition of this necessity, already in 2010, caused a group of professors and doctoral students, among them Dr. Rubén Muñoz Larrondo (Religion and Biblical Languages Department, Andrews University), Dr. Herold Weiss (Saint Mary’s College, Notre Dame, IN, emeritus), Dr. Tevni Grajales (Department of Graduate Psychology and Counseling, Andrews University), Abner Hernández, Enrique Báez y Davide Sciarabba, to share their visions and begin to plan the creation of an organization that would fulfill the desired objectives and thereby foster theological development in the Hispanic Adventist community. They wrote the Constitution and By-Laws of this new organism and registered it as a non-profit corporation in the State of Michigan. Soon other graduate students at Andrews and professors from around the world joined this nucleus to form a group of about twenty five participants. During different stages in the planning, the organizers consulted informally and received advice from representatives of the Department of Education and the Biblical Research Institute of the General Conference and of the Inter American and the South American Divisions of the church.

Thus the Centro Hispano Adventista para el Diálogo Teológico, CHADT (Hispanic Adventist Center for Theological Dialogue), came into existence with offices in Berrien Springs, MI. The Center is made up of members with a doctoral degree in theology or an ancillary discipline (Biblical Studies, Historical or Systematic Theology, Ecclesiastical History, Semitic of Classical Languages, Archaeology of the Ancient Near East, Anthropology or Sociology of Religion, etc.) and doctoral students in programs in one of these fields. Today the Center counts among its members professors from most of the Adventist seminaries in the United States, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, Mexico, Italy, Spain, Peru and Bolivia and students in different universities, including Hebrew University in Jerusalem and the University of Barcelona in Spain. All those who fulfill the basic requirement are invited to apply for membership in the Center by writing to centro.hispano.adventista@gmail.com, or to ‘like us’ at our webpage Hispanic Adventist Theological Dialogue.

The Center conducts its monthly meetings during the school year, September to May. At the meetings a member or an invited guest presents the results of the study of a discrete topic to have it discussed by all the participants. No matter where in the world members find themselves they can participate in the meetings via Adobeconnect. Only members who are up to date with their quota, however, have access to the presentations, the written materials and the Powerpoint presentations. This is an attempt to overcome the loneliness that may be felt by those who do not have easy opportunities to dialogue with Adventist colleagues about subjects of interest, and to create a community of theologians who know each other and support each other to better fulfill their vocation.

The Center already has achieved a significant goal by facilitating the incorporation of Andrews University to the Hispanic Theological Initiative Consortium (HTI) sponsored by Princeton Theological Seminary in New Jersey. This consortium offers Hispanic doctoral students scholarships that include external mentors, networking opportunities, editorial assistance with dissertation writing, and links to future employers. Applicants to these scholarships must have been already accepted to carry out doctoral studies at an accredited doctoral program in the USA. Now that Andrews is one of them the consortium has twenty three member institutions. Already several Adventists who have studied at Andrews or at other universities have benefited from HTI scholarships. Those wishing to know more about them should write to http://www.ptsem.edu/hti/.

One of the objectives that CHADT would like to achieve in the not too distant future is to establish a residency program for Hispanic Adventist professors of theology from around the world to spend their sabbatical leave, be it a semester of a school year, at Andrews University with access to classes and the library in order to carry out a pre-authorized course of studies. The next immediate project is to publish via Internet an academic journal with the papers presented at the monthly meetings of CHADT as a contribution to general information and the growth of the church.

Following is the list of the papers already presented and those which are scheduled for this school year.

Hispanic Adventist Center for Theological Dialogue: Coming Presentations

Feb. 13, 2013Jacob Arminio & Ellen G. White: Total Depravity and previnient grace Abner Hernández, Theological Seminary, Andrews University Respondent: Víctor Figueroa, Universidad Adventista ColombiaMarch 14, 2013 The Law in Paul Panayotis Coutsoumpos, Potomac Conference Respondent: Rubén Dupertuis, Trinity UniversityApril 15, 2013 The Adventist Project Fernando Canale, Theological Seminary, Andrews University Respondent: Hanz Gutiérrez, Instituto Adventista Villa Aurora, ItaliaMay 16, 2013 The creation story and the construction of temples in the Ancient Near East Jahisber Panuela, Theological Seminary,, Andrews University Respondent: TBA.

Past Presentations

January 12, 2013 A historical-theological comparative of the cultic phrase "inside the veil" between Albion. F. Ballenger and Desmond Ford Samuel Pagán, Theological Seminary,, Andrews University Respondent: Ciro Sepúlveda, Oakwood UniversityNov. 11, 2012 Solomon and monogamy: Does S. Songs 6:8-9 speak about Solomon's harem? Erick Mendieta, Theological Seminary,, Andrews University Respondent: Jorge Torreblanca, Seminario Teológico Adventista InteramericanoOct. 10, 2012 Prophetic Books Efraim Vázquez, Seminario Teológico Adventista Interamericano Respondent: Lael Ceasar, Adventist ReviewSept. 9, 2012 Psalm 7: A pluralistic reading Richard Medina, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem Respondent: Miguel Gutiérrez, Instituto Adventista Villa Aurora, ItaliaMay 8, 2012 Teach the Presenth Truth: Beyond Postmodernism, challenges and opportunities in the Adventist Education Roberto Badenas, TransEuropean Division Respondent: Herold Weiss, St. Mary's College, Notre Dame, IndianaApril 7, 2012Resurrection in Daniel 12:2: Chronology and relation of the events of Daniel 12:1 Roger Ruiz, Theological Seminary,, Andrews University Respondent: Alberto Treiyer, Regional ConferenceMarch 6, 2012Blessed are those waiting: An historic adventist interpretation of Daniel 12:11-12 Abner Hernández, Theological Seminary, Andrews University Respondent: Gluder Quispe, Universidad Peruana UniónFeb 5, 2012 The name of God in Exodus Enrique Báez, Theological Seminary, Andrews UniversityJan 4, 2012 Christian Ethics in sport competition: A biblical perspective on 2 Tim 4:6-8 Davide Sciarabba, Theological Seminary, Andrews University

2011

Dec. 3, 2011 A Comparative study of the design of Niniveh's temples of Nabu, Ishtar and Kidmuri and its rituals Abelardo Rivas, Theological Seminary, Andrews UniversityNov. 2, 2011 The Divinity in the Acts of the Apostles: Some reflections on Christology Rubén Muñoz-Larrondo, Theological Seminary, Andrews UniversityOct. 1, 2011 The Sabbath in Colossians, Herold Weiss, St. Mary's College, Notre Dame, Indiana


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at http://spectrummagazine.org/node/5086