Something of a rite of passage happened again today at Concordia Seminary: The beginning Greek students took– and passed — their Greek qualifier. It happens twice a year; at the end of August for the summer group and before Thanksgiving for the Fall group. Greek and Hebrew are required languages at Concordia Seminary. Specifically, M.Div. students who are training to be pastors must pass qualifying exams in Greek, Hebrew, Old Testament, New Testament, and Lutheran doctrine before they can be enrolled in the program. Only a handful of seminaries in the U.S. still require both Greek and Hebrew before beginning studies, including the seminary of our partner church in in Germany and the seminary of the Wisconsin Synod. But it has long been a part of the Lutheran tradition since the Scriptures are (it should go without saying) really, really important to us.
Anyway, today was the day that the new students took their Greek qualifier. Thirty-one in this group. And all thirty-one passed! One person even scored 100; oral tradition has it that this in only the second time in history that a student wrote a perfect exam. Congrats to the students, whose hard work paid off; their wives and kids, who put up with hours and hours of study, and to Professor Dave Lewis, whose awesome teaching got everyone through. You might know Prof. Lewis from his chapel sermons; you might know him from his movie analysis nights at the annual Theological Symposium in September. But you might not know about him and the zombies.
I’ll let you watch the video.
A tradition here at Concordia, after passing the qualifier, is the “Fountain Jump.” Today it was cold: here’s the video.
These guys get a break now, until the Monday after Thanksgiving when they start another Greek class and (I hate to remind you, guys) Hebrew begins.