Final Stop at the Seminary
Rev. Chuck Muether, Director of Advancement
Growing up in the 70’s and riding on the lead M1 electric Long Island Railroad commuter car was an adventure for me every time, because I got the same view as the motorman.
There is nothing quite like the front seat where you get to see what lies ahead. I think the same can be said of my tenure at Heidelberg Seminary. I have had the front seat as one of the inaugural student body in both the M.Div. and D.Min. programs, I have served on the Board of Trustees, I taught as an adjunct professor of New Testament Studies, I was hired as the Development Coordinator, and my most recent station stop has been Director of Advancement. If there is anyone who could fill an old-school 35mm slide carousel for an educational travelogue, it would be I. I have seen it all, and it has been a terrific ride with spectacular views of God’s kingdom from the classroom to the pulpit. Dedicated men like Board President Ted Griess and Seminary President Dr. Maynard Koerner and many others have taken a fledging institution in Vermillion, SD, moved the seminary to Sioux Falls and have reached students well beyond the borders of this country. HTS learning centers have been created in the Philippines, and a new international program in Africa is about to be launched, all while the seminary remains committed to equipping men in the RCUS and other Reformed fellowships in the States.
In all of these developments the core vision of pastor professors teaching prospective pastors to preach faithfully the Word and diligently shepherd the flock has never been lost. There has always been a vocational sensibility–parsonage training with pastor-professors engaging and mentoring students for pulpit ministry.
Dr. Koerner, a former church planter, knew well what it meant to start with very little and operate from year to year on a bare bones budget. He never lost sight of God’s provision even during the lean years, always realizing that in the end God’s will prevails, and if HTS is to succeed it would need God’s blessing. The blessing has come in the form of a prayerful and supportive constituency, superb leadership from the board and administration, and a fine faculty that loves the Lord and the church.
I have enjoyed my time serving Heidelberg Theological Seminary, and after I first boarded the proverbial train in 2003, I have arrived at my final stop in 2021 where I will take up a new calling, for which the seminary has always prepared me. Indeed, my front seat view at HTS shouts of God’s faithfulness in the training for the next generation.