Pilgrim celebrates first valedictory service

United Theological College valedictorians Pilgrim Theological College celebrated a new milestone on 30 October with its inaugural valedictory service. This year’s valedictorians were the first students to graduate from the newly-formed college, established at the start of this year.

In previous years, the valedictory service recognised candidates who finished preparation for their ordained ministry. Paul Dau, Kharis Susilowati and Juliette Tautala’aso (pictured) were part of the cohort who graduated from United Theological College last year. The diverse backgrounds of the graduates – Mr Dau from South Sudan, Ms Susilowati from Indonesia and Ms Tautala’aso from Samoa – reflect the Church’s commitment to embracing the gifts of its culturally and linguistically diverse members.

With the launch of Pilgrim this year, the 2015 valedictory service included candidates who finished their formation program and are ready to start ordained ministry, as well as people who completed their theological degrees.

The expanded, flexible curriculum at Pilgrim caters for people studying theology for the first time as well as those pursuing a degree in higher education. Participants in Pilgrim’s programs include young people with an interest in theology, retired congregation members seeking to enhance their spiritual development, ordained ministers engaged in continuing education, and people in lay ministry who wish to deepen their relationship with Christ.

The Uniting Church believes every person can serve Christ in their own way. Some are called to become ministers of the Word. They undertake Pilgrim’s formation program, designed to equip candidates with the experience to become future leaders of the Church.

The valedictory service is a significant achievement for candidates as it marks the culmination of years of hard work, study and reflection. The next step on their faith journey will be receiving a placement and commencing their ministry in the Church and beyond.

If you wish to apply to study at Pilgrim, please email coursework coordinator Fotini Toso at Fotini.Toso@pilgrim.edu.au

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