AADVENT, New Developments for 2009 - 2011

   It is with great excitement that McCormick announces a new and re-envisioned project to succeed AADVENT. The Lilly Endowment offered a great opportunity for McCormick to submit a new proposal to use the remaining grant funds, which currently total just under $1 million, that were awarded in 2004 through The Making Connections Initiative. Following on the great success of AADVENT—originally conceived through the prophetic vision held by the Rev. Mary Paik, former Director of the AADVENT Project—this new project expands the work of AADVENT to other sectors of the seminary and to other groups of people.

   The new project will serve African American, Asian American, and Latin@ young adults and pastors in an expanded initiative that will encompass:

  • Faculty and curricular development to further equip and train McCormick’s teacher-scholars to provide theological education more effectively in the 21st century, and then share these learnings with the greater theological education community.
  • Anti-racism training that will be integrated across all constituents that comprise the McCormick community.
  • Additional support for programs of the emerging Institute for Cross-Cultural Theological Education, as well the Center for Asian American Ministries, the Center for the Study of Latin@ Theology and Ministry, and the Center for African American Ministry and Black Church Studies. This includes a continuing emphasis on exploring second-generation ministry in the context of the Latin@ and Asian American church life, and opportunities to address the shared struggles and collaborations for faith communities of color.
  • Vocational development for Asian American, Latin@ and African American young adults, including introductory seminars and retreats for young adults discerning a call to ministry and to further theological education.
  • Consultation and networking opportunities for Asian American, Latin and African American pastors and other religious leaders through several planned gatherings, with a focus on providing these church workers with the ministry tools and community support to nurture the next generation of leadership for church and society.
  •    Thanks to all who have supported the work of AADVENT and who have been program participants. We hope you will continue to be a part of the new project we are forming, which cannot succeed without your help and support. The program components are still in early development stages, and their specific shape and focus will be determined by a fall 2009 consultation that will include leadership representatives from African American, Asian American, and Latin@ church communities.

       We also anticipate holding events for Asian American, African American and Latin@ pastors and young adults beginning in the summer of 2009. We hope you will join us in these important efforts. In the meantime, pray that this emerging vision will continue to make connections between generations, racial groups, academic institutions, and faith communities in order to strengthen and transform the Church of Jesus Christ that we serve together.