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Southeast Asian Lay Training Program

In cooperation with Rev. Dr. James Oudom and the Southeast Asian Ministry at First Presbyterian Church of Cornelia, Georgia


Date: May 28-June 2, 2017

Time: Varies daily

Location: Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, McCord Community Center
100 E. 27th Street, Austin 78705

Cost: $300

Austin Seminary will host the 24th annual Southeast Asian Lay Training Program. The program consists of six core courses taught over the course of three summers in Reform Theology, Presbyterian Polity, Worship & Sacrament, Bible Interpretation, Teaching in the Reform Tradition, and Reformed Preaching. Successful completion of the six courses earns certification that the graduate has received adequate education to carry out the duties of a lay commissioned pastor. 

The registration fee covers all meals, a double occupancy room at Austin Seminary, and other needs for training. Registration is non-refundable after May 20. Additional information will be provided upon receipt of your completed registration. Food will be prepared by all students, with all living like real family in Christ for the week! Although students may commute, they are encouraged to stay in campus housing.

Registration coming soon.


About the Program

The Southeast Asian Lay Training program was created to offer leaders in Southeast Asian congregations training and education at a seminary of the Presbyterian Church (USA). The General Assembly’s National Laotian Presbyterian Council initiated the program under the direction of the Rev. Dr. James Oudom. Through the training, key congregational leaders are educated in basic Presbyterian doctrine and practice as prescribed for Commissioned Ruling Elders in the Book of Order, thereby providing means for Southeast Asian congregations to celebrate the sacraments of the Lord and enrich their faith through teachings in their own language.

The training, directed and overseen by the Rev. Dr. Oudom, includes six core courses taught over the course of three summers. Students receive 1.5 continuing education or certificate credits for each course of study.  Students who successfully complete the six basic courses earn a certificate to show that they have received adequate education in the areas required for the duties of a Commissioned Ruling Elder in his/her congregation.

Austin Seminary, through the office of Education Beyond the Walls, coordinates the faculty and the setting for the annual training, now in its twenty-first year. 


Course Descriptions

“Exile and Return in Isaiah 40-55” taught by Rev. Dr. Gregory Cuellar

The primary focus of this course is to engage in a close reading of Isaiah 40-55, emphasizing the themes of exile and return. Alongside examining the nature of Hebrew prophecy, this course also seeks to offer and overview of the various critical methods for interpreting prophetic texts.  – Rev. Dr. Cuéllar

“The Power of Story” taught by Rev. Dr. Beverly J. Jones

This course will examine story as a primary way we grow in self-understanding and in our formation for faith. Students will engage Biblical stories, stories of church, and their own life stories as powerful means for responding to God’s call in their lives and for sharing their faith with others.  – Rev. Dr. Jones

Schedule to Be Determined 

About the Presenters

Rev. Dr. Thomas W. Curie

Tom Currie was born in Ft. Worth, Texas. In 1970 he entered Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary where he received his Master of Divinity degree. He and his wife, Peggy, moved to Edinburgh, Scotland, where Tom earned a PhD in Theology. He served in parish ministry for 25 years. In 2001, he became the founding dean of Union Presbyterian Seminary and served there for 13 years, teaching theology and ethics. In 2015, Tom and peggy moved to Austin, where Tom is serving as a visiting professor at Austin Seminary.

Rev. Dr. Carolyn Helsel

Carolyn Browning Helsel joined the faculty of Austin Seminary in 2015. She was a teaching assistant for Professors Tom Long, Teresa Fry Brown and Luke Timothy Johnson. The Title of her dissertation was, "The Hermenuetics of Recognition: A Ricoeurian Interpretative Framework for Whites Preaching about Racism." Helsel was ordained in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) ansd served as associate pastor at John Calvin Presbyterian Church in San Antonio, Texas from 2005-2007.

For More Information: 

Contact Rev. Dr. Oudom

Office: 706-778-2822

Cell: 706-969-2888 

E-mail: joudom@corfpc.org 

or: c/o Rev. Dr. James Oudom 

PO Box 165 

Cornelia, GA 30531



© 2018 Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary
100 E. 27th Street Austin, Texas 78705
P: 512-404-4800
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