Inge Westly (left), Frank Grimstad, Astrid Sandsmark, Harald Hegstad, Erling Birkedal, Sunniva Gylver and Kristin Graff-Kallevåg are among those participating in MF KOM. Fredrik Saxegaard and Tone S. Kaufman were not present when this picture was taken. Several other colleagues will be involved in the time to come.
New competence centre at MF
MF KOM to coordinate MF's activity of ministering to the church's scholarly needs, and finding new ways the church can use academic theology.
- Our goal is to be a resource and a point of contact for the church at local, regional and national levels, says Inge Westly. He manages the new competence centre MF KOM - MF Centre for Church Innovation and Research. The centre is establish and under development.
For ten year MF has offered courses to congregations and dioceses and programs for congregational development (MUV). At the same time, MF has actively contributed to the Church of Norway's work on Christian education and to continuing education for church employees.
- We have now consolidated this work in a separate centre that will coordinate MF's activity aimed at church partners, and develop new ways of sharing our academic competence. This is a core task for MF, says Rector Vidar L. Haanes.
Two new pillars
The establishment of the centre can be seen in connection with the establishment of MF CASR, MF's new Centre for the Advanced Study of Religion.
- With MF CASR, we want to focus on and develop research, education and scholarly communication in the field of religion, directed towards school and society. Through MF KOM we will be doing the same thing within the fields of theology, diakonia and Christian education directed towards, and in cooperation with, the church and the congregations, says Haanes.
Aims to give scholarly help
MF KOM hopes to give scholarly help to congregations and church ministries in many different ways.
- We can help through courses, congregational development, lecturing, study trips and continuing education. We are also very interested in working together with dioceses or national ministries on research projects or different kinds of competence development, says Westly. He thinks the centre MF KOM will also mean a lot for MF's employees.
- Colleagues who would like to participate in projects aimed at the church and congregational activity will gain better access to colleagues and help to coordinate efforts. The management of the competence centre is now working on including several employees at MF in the work.
Translated by: Andrew D. Wergeland