Presbytery Suspends Use of Ordination Exams

To the delight of many seminary students the Presbytery of Silly Walks in the Pines has suspended the Ordination Exams that complete most seminary student’s preparation for ministry. These examinations consist of a three hour polity exam, a three hour theology exam, a three hour worship exam and a exegesis exam. Not to mention the Bible content exam that they take much earlier in their seminary careers.

Generally Executive Presbyter Georgia Smith exclaimed that “We welcome all students who want to be in a Presbytery that does not require these examinations for ordination.” The Presbytery’s COPM has decided that the only true judges of a person’s fitness for ministry are the Presbytery’s of care, the individuals congregations of care and the seminaries in which they are studying.

President Cynthia Gracious of our own Walking Talk Presbyterian Seminary in Capital City believes that this freedom will open up the ordination process to more creative and diverse ministry when “the cookie cutters are thrown away.”

In recent years rumors have spread that these examinations have been plagued by a lack of transparency, are subjective and filled with uneven grading. It has also been rumored that over the years the success to failure ratio has swung wildly. Plus, there was the Oklahoma City incident. This was when it was suspected that a group of Evangelical Presbyterian Church in America seminary students had stolen the tests, replacing them with answers that were filled with Armenianism, and had even less creativity than normal.

Elder Humphrey Bugbottoms, the previous presbytery grader of the national tests fumed, “These tests, while not perfect, are the best we have got to a standard. Each of us was given a cheat sheet with the answer that the test needed to have. People are always putting them down, but when they become ministers they see that they don’t want any seminary student to miss out on the excruciating anguish that they suffered. Just wait, I predict that the presbytery will come crawling back to the tests.”

In the meantime the presbytery is seeing unprecedented growth amongst seminary students and Walk Talk had the largest class in its 103 year history by 50 students last semester.


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