Seminary Symposium

Date: January 11th, 2023 - January 13th, 2023

You are invited to the first ever Free Lutheran Seminary Symposium, held on the Seminary campus.

The 2023 Seminary Symposium is a continuing education opportunity for pastors, seminary students, and other interested parties. The symposium format replaces the past January Term format and invites presentations on various topics, leaving space for thought-provoking interaction. The 2023 offering will focus on Jesus Christ in the Early Church, turning our eyes to the early church fathers, an area of study called “patristics.”  

“Patristics provides not only a historical context for the work of the church but helps us understand and spread the gospel today,” —President Wade Mobley.

Registration is $100 and includes 2 meals (Dinner on Wednesday and lunch on Thursday). All Symposium attendees are encouraged to stay for the Georg Sverdrup Society Forum on Friday which will conclude with a lunch, along with an opportunity to give a gift to support the Sverdrup Society.


Wednesday, Jan 11

7:00PM Dinner reception and Session 1 with Free Lutheran Seminary Dean, Dr. James Molstre.

Thursday, Jan 12

9:00AM–Noon Session 2

  • Dr. Daniel Janosik—New Insights into the Origins of Islam
    Recent evidence sheds new light on the origins of Islam. Explore the writings of John of Damascus, early church father and apologist, including his firsthand accounts of Muhammad, the formation of the Qur'an, and how they affected the early Christian church.

Noon Lunch in Cafeteria (provided)

1:00–4:00PM Session 3

  • Andrew Kneeland—"Holy Book, Holy Readers"
    The earliest readers of the Bible have greatly influenced the way we translate and interpret the Bible today. Pastor Andrew Kneeland will highlight key assumptions that guided early interpretation of the Bible, thus shaping Christian culture.
  • Matthew Ballmann—"A Case for Reading Holy Scripture with the Early Church"
    Many American Lutherans practice a radical individualism in how they read and interpret Scripture in isolation from the rest of the Church. In this session Pr. Matthew Ballmann will make a case for why we should strive to read Scripture with the earliest Christians and how tradition plays an important role in the Christian faith.
  • Steve Mundfrom—"Was Origen's Christology Heretical?"

Friday, Jan 13

8:30AM Coffee and pastries

9:00AM–Noon Georg Sverdrup Society Forum. Symposium participants are encouraged to attend.

Noon Lunch (Free Will Offering)

Guest instructors:

  • Dr. Daniel Janosik—Dr. Janosik is an Adjunct Professor of Apologetics and Islamic Studies at Southern Evangelical Seminary, Columbia International University, Erskine Seminary, and Veritas Seminary. He has written two books, John of Damascus: First Apologist to the Muslims, and A Christian’s Guide to Islam, as well as a number of articles in these areas. He has also spoken on college campuses and in churches throughout the United States as well as in England, Mexico, China and Japan, where he also served as a missionary. 
  • Rev. Matthew Ballmann—Matthew Ballmann is married to his wife Natalie who together have been blessed with five children. He serves as a pastor at Trinity San Antonio Lutheran Church, a new AFLC church plant in San Antonio, Texas. Matthew graduated with a BSBA in International Business from Thomas Edison State University, a Master of Theology (Th.M) from Dallas Theological Seminary with an emphasis in Historical Theology, and a Master of Arts in Theology (M.A) from Concordia University Irvine. 
  • Rev. Andrew Kneeland—Andrew Kneeland graduated from Free Lutheran Seminary and is a PhD candidate at Concordia Seminary-St. Louis. He also serves as editor of the The Lutheran Ambassador.