On September 3, 2016, the Ethiopian Graduate School of Theology, EGST awards post graduate degrees to its 16th batch of candidates in its campus. The class of 2016 consist of a total of 67 graduates in five programs – 7 in Theology, 16 in Biblical and Theological Studies, 20 in Leadership and Management, 18 in Development Studies and 6 in Post Graduate Diploma in Biblical and Theological Studies. Out of the total 67 graduates, 23 (34.4%) are female graduates. The graduation ceremony is planned to include speeches, sermon, songs, academic awards, testimonies and charge to the graduates among other things.
Reverend Dr. Wakseyoum Idosa, the Chairperson of the Ethiopian Graduate School of Theology Council of Owners and President of the Ethiopian Evangelical Church Mekane Yesus on his congratulatory message encouraged the graduates to reflect and fit what they have studied into the context of their ministries and to be instruments of peace, love and unity in a world of ethnic, cultural, and intellectual diversity as well as to be light and salt in a world which is fractured and full of a multitude of social, economic, and political problems.
Dr. Tesfaye Yacob, the Chairperson of the EGST Board, called on the graduates to become a blessing and beckon of restoration to those who are desperate for change. Dr. Tesfaye also informed the graduates to understand God’s purpose in their lives and be good stewards, as well as to continue to grow through divine provision that enables them to accomplish God’s purpose in life – to be loyal to the eternal calling.
The Director of EGST, Dr. Misgana Mathewos, on his message to the graduates, reminded the opportunity to think and act beyond personal interest in order to serve church and society in this time of ever increasing need for justice, equity and good administration. He cautioned the graduates to be agents of peace and reconciliation in the midst of hatred and conflict and to be light bearers in the midst of moral darkness. Dr. Misgana remarked that EGST has been fulfilling its vision and mission of serving church and society since its establishment by producing Christ-like women and men who are agents of ecclesial and societal transformation. However, he says, it is now time for us to ask ourselves the question if we are living up to the purpose of our existence, and if we are meeting the expectations of those we seek to benefit. He expressed his hope that both the graduates and stakeholders will have an opportunity to answer these questions to help EGST as an institution to improve and grow its service for the betterment of churches and society.
EGST exists to equip Christ-like women and men through theological and related studies and stimulate research for the service of church and society in Ethiopia and beyond. The main areas of work of EGST are teaching, research and community engagement. EGST currently offers five programs; Post Graduate Diploma in Biblical and Theological Studies (PGD), Master of Arts in Biblical and Theological Studies (MABTS), Master of Arts in Leadership and Management (MALM), Master of Arts in Development Studies with specialization areas in Community Development and Theology and Gender, Health and Theology (MADevS), as well as Master of Theology (MTh). EGST plans to start other programs and is making preparations towards introducing PhD program in 2017/18. With the current 67 graduates included, EGST will have graduated a total of 456 students since its establishment in 1997.
In 2010, EGST has been awarded accreditation by the Association for Christian Theological Education in Africa (ACTEA), recognizing the teaching standards and contextual relevance of EGST’s programs as well as the overall administration and resources of the school. EGST is also registered in Ethiopia according to Proclamation Number 691/2003 by the Ministry of Federal and Pastoral Development Affairs to serve church and society with the objective of teaching, research and community engagement.
EGST was jointly founded in 1997 by the Ethiopia Evangelical Church Mekane Yesus (EECMY), the Ethiopian Kale Heywet Church (EKHC), and the Evangelical Churches Fellowship of Ethiopia (ECFE), which together represent the majority of the Evangelical believers. (EGST Public Relations, August 29, 2016)