The word doctor comes from the Latin root docere, which means, “to teach”. Literally a doctor is a teacher. With no intense and sophisticated curriculum to augment researches for a teaching career in Theology the practitioner’s doctorate in ministry is not meant for preparing anyone to teach theology. That’s why my Anglican friend does not call himself “Dr.”. The teaching degree in Theology is still a very sophisticated Doctor of Theology or a Doctor of Philosophy in Theology. However, we see many of our young priests come to America seeking a D. Min. degree. There are many reasons behind this tendency. First of all, there are no strict admission criteria for this program; any one with a basic B.D. and a few years of ministerial experience has easy access to this program. Another reason is the unquenchable thirst to add the prefix of Dr. before one’s name, because, unfortunately, in Keralam this title makes its holders more distinguished in the sight of ordinary people who have no idea about the worth of it or how it was acquired. This degree has more substance than a mail order degree anyway. For many celibate priests it is the highest achievement (?) they can flash on their curriculum vitae for advancement towards the episcopate, because a “Dr.” is the magical title that mesmerizes the rank and file. These priests do not possess the necessary scholastic strength to get admitted in a Th.D. program. Therefore, it is the easy route towards a recognizable title. It is to be observed that most of these degrees are milled out from Protestant institutions.
How much fidelity to genuine orthodoxy can we expect from these doctors? Can these doctors heal the disease of faith and morals in our Church? Think twice.
Now we come back to the faculty of our seminary. We are really proud of our seminary. We have scholars in our seminary. However, because of the academic supervision by a liberal Protestant institution, and because of the proximity to liberal Protestants who impose their way of thinking on our faculty, and because of unhealthy ecumenical relations with the heterodox, I wonder, if our seminary is a flagship of genuine orthodoxy. The current D.Th. program and its curriculum contents are very ecumenical and the seminary becomes a melting pot of many doctrines and beliefs. The doctors in our seminary do not have the fortitude to articulate orthodoxy or cancel affiliation with a Protestant College of Theology. Because it is ecumenism and attachment with Western theology that take them around the world and offer them red carpet services.
Can these doctors treat the disease of faith and morals in our Church? His Beatitude was right when he said: “Yes, we have many doctors; but there is no one to treat the disease…”. Let me reiterate the title of this editorial: “Doctors, Doctors, Everywhere Doctors; Not A Single One To Treat the Disease!”