«For this reason I remind you to rekindle the gift of God that is within you...»
— 2 Timothy 1:6 

You are cordially invited to 25th Anniversary Celebrations of the Baltic Methodist Theological Seminary on May 24th, 2019 in Tallinn, Estonia.

 

On October 9-10 a group from EKKA, an international institutional accreditation assessment group, visited us. They were sent by the Estonian/EU government to assess the quality of our educational institution. We received positive and encouraging feedback from the group. Many thanks to all former and current teachers, students, workers etc. who helped us to prepare and put our best foot forward during this visit. Some of you were caught on this picture.

On October 1-2 we received a four-member delegation from our long-time partners, Asbury Theological Seminary. Bishop Christian Alsted participated as the chair of trustees. During the visit, we agreed that our collaboration toward development of a joint Master’s program will continue step by step and by March 2020 we will hold a Church Planting Institute in Tallinn. We Look forward to this event. The Methodist Related Theological Schools of Europe are also planning to hold their student conference and annual meeting in Tallinn during that time.

EMKTS seeks to be the place where churches and workers from all over Europe receive training and resources for missions and church development in Europe and beyond. We are grateful for partners who help us accomplish this mission.

Seminary studies began on August 29th with a communion service. Our prayer is that God who has been at work in the hearts of the students and called them to study would help each of them to follow that call. Mark 1:17-18 was the message of the day: “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.” At once they left their nets and followed him.

Our main staff started the new year with a team retreat at Käsmu at the Baltic sea.  We prayed together, discussed the future and learned to know each other better. We discussed how to work together efficiently as a team. Seminary has many plans to develop an grow. It was a time of work as well as refreshing. We welcome in our team new faculty Master Taavel Taimla is teaching Missions and Evangelism and Spiritual Formation, and our former District Superintendent Taavi Hollman is developing a new pastor-s education track and develops our practicums as well as assist the new President administratively. Our new District Superintendent Robert Tserenkov is also participating in seminary leadership. May God bless them all in their new roles!

13 students graduated from the Seminary in 2018. They studied in two different languages and came from Estonia, Ukraine and Russia. Some finished their studies in the normal 3 years, some needed more time. We are proud of our two graduates who received cum laude for their excellent study results. At the graduation ceremony they received diplomas demonstrating their completion of the Mission and Theology curriculum. Graduates 2017: Oleksii Bulat, Zhanna Bulat, Kaire Lotamõis, Olavi Laur, Meelis Maikalu, Iya Markovich, Maiu Medri, Markko Põld, Izrail Kirillov, Triin Tarendi, Eivin Toodo, Veikko Võsu, Alur Õunpuu.

Following a formal search process, the Church Board of the UMC in Estonia confirmed the recommendation of the Seminary’s Board of Trustees to appoint Dr. Külli Tõniste as Seminary Rector. The new rector will begin her tenure on August 1, 2018. Outgoing rector Dr. Meeli Tankler is stepping back after 9 years in office but will continue in a teaching role. Dr. Külli Tõniste is a BMTS graduate who went on to complete a Master of Arts in Biblical Studies at Asbury Theological Seminary in the USA. She completed the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Biblical Theology in 2010 at Brunel University for research undertaken at London School of Theology. Külli Tõniste served as an assistant professor in New Testament at Houghton College and adjunct professor at Northeastern Theological Seminary in the USA. Since 2015, Külli Tõniste, together with her husband, Douglas Childress have been in Estonia as missionaries with the UMC’s General Board of Global Ministries serving in the BMTS both in teaching and in working with Seminary development.

The Baltic Methodist Theological Seminary started a new study year on 23rd August.
The topic of the opening worship service was overcoming difficulties on the way to Jesus, followed by days of intense lectures. 22 new students from four different countries were enrolled in the Seminary. Study process takes place in Estonian, English and Russian.

14 students graduated from the Seminary in 2017. They studied in three different languages and came from numerous countries: Estonia, Ukraine, Russia, Nigeria and Latvia. Some finished their studies in the normal 3 years, some needed more time. We are proud of our two graduates who received cum laude for their excellent study results. At the graduation ceremony they received diplomas demonstrating their completion of the Mission and Theology curriculum.  Graduates 2017: Janne Ahnefer, Urmas Jäe, Kristjan Kalamägi, Beno Kudrin, Laura-Elisa Kägra, Emmanuel Testimony Odeh, Johanna-Margret Ojaots cum laude, Janika Rosen, Irina Semjonova, Kristina Sinimeri, Oleg Šumilov cum laude, Vera Titovića, Iurii Vegera, Sarah Tania Weber.

During the spring semester, BMTS second and third year students enrolled in Denominational Studies course had a privilege to learn about about the history, theology and practices of different Christian denominations. In June, our guests were Urmas Viilma, the archbishop of Estonian Evangelical Lutheran Church, Highpriest Mattias Palli from Estonian Apostolic Orthodox Church. One of the goals of the course is to help the students appreciate the unique contributions made by different churches in understanding and worshipping God. Students are also encouraged to think respectfully and oecumenically about other Christians and creatively about how different churches can work together to fulfill Christ's Great Commission. Discussions were facilitated by BMTS dotsent, Külli Tõniste, Ph.D. Earlier in the semester Rev. Erki Tamm from the Union of Free Evangelical and Baptist Churches of Estonia (EEKBKL), bishop Ago Lilleorg from Estonian Christian Pentecostal Church and bishop Philippe Jourdan from Roman Catholic Church also spoke to the students. The Seminary thanks all the lecturers for their gracious participation and substantive lectures.