Frequently Asked Questions
Why go to Bible College – isn’t a traineeship enough?
Students who are experienced in ministry, including traineeships, usually benefit most from their time at Ridley. However while traineeships help you to gain skills in ministry, confidence in gospel ministry, and good patterns of working in ministry, Bible or Theological College offers you much more.
- Learning Greek and Hebrew, will give you the ability to study the Bible with much greater insight.
- Studying the Bible in greater depth will give you deeper knowledge of particular books, and also skills in reading and understanding the Bible that will enable you to do this for yourself at ever-increasing levels for the rest of your ministry.
- Learning to think theologically, and learning the history of Christian thought and practice, will enable you to work out creative new ways of doing ministry that reflect new contexts and new times, and are also true to the Bible. This is much more than repeating one model of ministry forever.
- Learning ministry practice in college is much more than learning a skill. It is learning how to be a life-long learner in the practice of ministry, and so be more able to teach and train a variety of people.
- Studying at College also trains you to use books, articles, and website sources to maximum advantage. You also learn heaps from other students from a great variety of backgrounds, and with a great variety of ministry experiences.
Which College should I choose if I want the best training?
Here are some questions for you to think through as you look at possible Colleges:
- Does this College provide the right balance between these three ingredients: Bible and Biblical Theology; Theology and ethics; and personal and ministry formation?
- Will this College prepare me well to serve in the context and situation of the ministry that I expect to do?
- Will this College form my character not just inform my mind
- Is its size right for me – big enough to offer full tie professional faculty, small enough to provide community and allow for discussion
- Is this college good value for my time and money?
Why does Ridley have so many Faculty?
To train and equip people for long-term ministry we need specialists in Old and New Testament, the history of Christian thought and practice, contemporary thinking on theological and ethical issues, as well as ministry practice.
What kind of Anglicanism does Ridley represent?
We welcome students from many different backgrounds, and do not require any form of Anglican allegiance or commitment. However it is still good to be able to make it clear what kind of Anglican identity we have. The Principal must be an Anglican, but there is no requirement that faculty, staff or students are Anglican. There are many different forms of Anglican around the world today.
In terms of Anglican tradition we identify with the statements included in the Constitution of the Anglican Church of Australia.
We also believe that true Anglicanism is contextual, contemporary, cross-cultural, and creative, and so we promote and implement that style of ministry.
In terms of some current issues, we uphold the document Faithfulness in Service, which has been adopted by the Anglican Church of Australia.
We also support the Jerusalem Declaration of 2008.
What is the difference between a Bible College and a Theological College?
The difference used to be that Bible Colleges taught the Bible and practical ministry, and Theological Colleges taught Bible and Christian Thought. However things have changed in the last few years, and both kinds of Colleges are usually pretty similar.
Ridley works hard at providing the following three elements.
Both Bible and Theological Colleges will vary their emphases on these elements.
Can you study at Ridley part time?
Yes, you can do one or two units a year, either during the day or in evening lectures. You can do one-off units without intending to complete the degree. We also provide some subjects in distance mode, through eRidley.
A word from our students
The academic work is taught along spirituality as well, in other words I’m growing academically but I'm also growing spiritually