The best time to equip and train workers is always ‘now’. We thank God for this timely establishment of a new training institute where holistic training based on the idea of integration is made possible. This is our response, as a diocese, under the leadership of our bishop, to the call of our missional God.
We are here to help those who are called by the Lord, providing them not just with the training of the mind, but heart and skills, within the whole framework of our context. We do not just educate, we nurture the calling, and inspire actions – with support and a structure that involves collaboration with the rest of the diocese body. In other words, we are not a school. We are the church. Welcome to the family.
Revd. Lin Khee-Vun, Principal of ATI; Chairman, Diocesan Training Committee.
Welcome to the Anglican Training Institute (ATI)
The School of Ministry and Mission (SOMM) now renamed the Anglican Training Institute aims to give future pastors and priests a hands-on approach to ministry, supported by a strong theological backbone.
Our entire purpose is to serve the local churches of the Anglican Diocese of Sabah and beyond, by providing training which helps students to gain relevant theological knowledge, and at the same time experience actual ministry learning in the mission field and local parishes.The Anglican Training Institute strikes a balance in both theology and practical training of our students, ensuring that they will graduate and enter into ministry with confidence.
Building strong churches requires pastors who are committed to God’s calling, rooted in God’s Word, and empowered by the Holy Spirit. Towards this end, Anglican Training Institute’s model of training in preparing God’s people for ministry is highly recommended.
Revd. Dr. Lim Kar-Yong, Advisor, Diocesan Training Committee; Adjunct Lecturer, Malaysia Bible Seminary & Seminari Theoloji Malaysia.
ATI’s distinctiveness can be summarised as ‘Integrated Training’:
Integrating Vocation and Training
As an initiative by the Diocesan Training Committee, the ATI works closely with the Diocesan Vocation Committee, thus ensuring that the training for each fulltime worker is fully integrated into the vocational development pathway supervised by the Vocation Committee. In other words, ATI plays a key role in enabling those who responded to fulltime calling to enter into their first theological and ministry training at the earliest possible stage of their vocation, ensuring that they form their theological foundation while serving at a local church, even within the first few years of their serving. Meanwhile, they will also be equipped to be effective in ministry. With this it is believed that the local church will benefit from the effectiveness of the students, while the training for the students could take place concurrently.
I fully support and encourage our members and staff to enroll with our Anglican Training Institute. In ATI, the academic and ministry training will help you both in critical thinking and practical ministry, thus preparing you to be effective in both pastoral ministry and missions work.
Rt. Revd. John Yeo, Assistant Bishop, Anglican Diocese of Sabah; Chairman, Diocesan Vocation Committee.
Integrating Global and Local
In the past, our predecessors have been diligently seeking out the best theological seminaries available to us in The UK, Australia, Singapore and also locally. Pastors and priests have been sent all over the world to obtain their theological education and the Diocese has been progressing according to the knowledge and theology that these priest and pastors have brought back. However, with the progress that the Diocese is moving into, and by the grace of God, we have found the strength to develop an Integrated Training with a local expression, attuned to the vision of the diocese and the need of the local context. Excellent ministry and theological heritage from the West and others shall be integrated with our very local wisdom to form a typical Sabah Anglican ethos, catering to our specific needs and preparing us to move forward into the future.
Integrating Training with Discipleship
Another Integration which ATI aims to include in its Training is the mentoring or apprentice model. With it we integrate theological education at the institute with close supervision, guidance and support from the local pastor/priest. As such, the students will be able to be trained while they are on the job. Apart from that, they will also be able to find help from their mentor – the local priest or pastor. This process of training differs from the conventional model where students are entrusted to a theological college or seminary for a number of years.
Integrating Training with Fellowship
The fourth area which Integrated Training takes place is when students coming from various parts of the diocese are put together in their training. Students from various background, cultural groups and places will be given the chance from the very early stage of their training to connect with each other, enhancing the integration of the diocese. They will also be able to know the diocese better as they interact.
Integrating Training and Mission
Initially called the School of Ministry and Mission, ATI has a clear mandate to train missionaries. So it has integrated the training of missionary as one of its aims. Presently, ATI also runs the training for the Ambassadors Programme – a one year training/serving programme for school leavers or graduates which consists of three cycles – with each cycle consisting of a six weeks in-house training and a ten weeks hands-on serving in churches or mission fields. With this the Ambassadors will have the opportunity to nurture their faith as well as to assess God’s calling in their life. This is an integrated and joint effort with the Diocesan Mission Committee.
ATI gives you instant access to quality theological education and relevant ministry skills as soon as you are recommended by your pastor/priest. We welcome those who wish to respond to God’s calling and recommended by their pastors/priests. In other words, one needs not worry about availability of theological education and ministry training once entering fulltime ministry. With courses endorsed by the Anglican Diocese of Sabah and integrated with the whole vocation pathway, once accepted into ATI, a person can be instantly trained whenever he or she is ready.The ATI also provides an opportunity for vocational upgrade and ministry equipping for fulltime church workers – from youth evangelists, evangelists, pastors to administration staff.