Today's seminary students 'too poor to take vow of poverty'

Published: Tuesday, Aug. 14 2012 12:00 a.m. MDT

Our Take: Rising tuition and mounting student debt could impact the ministry if solutions aren't found. Apparently the prospects of a job in the ministry that won't pay enough to retire student debt is forcing some religious institutes to turn prospective pastors away. Online education is one solution some seminaries are embracing to cut costs.

"Today's budding pastors and theologians are entering and exiting seminary with more debt than ever before, according to new research from The Center for the Study of Theological Education at Auburn Theological Seminary."

"Auburn research reveals the number of master of divinity graduates who borrow money is surging, as well as the total size of their loans. Debts of $30,000 to $80,000 are now common — with little hope of a high-wage job to repay them, given that Department of Labor statistics estimated a clergyman's average yearly wage to be about $44,140 last year."

Read more about divinity graduates and debt on Christianity Today.

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