The article seems relevant to the recent Unitarian Universalist blog discussions on "ministerial formation" and "ministerial credentialing."
Here's a short quote from the article:
Some senior pastors of large and influential congregations do not have a seminary degree, including Brian McLaren, who has served as pastor for a vibrant and growing congregation and been one of the main inspirations of the emergent church movement. Increasingly bishops and other judicatory leaders are less interested in whether someone went to seminary than in whether the person is an effective leader.The article is titled "Pastors by degree" by L. Gregory Jones (Dean of Duke University Divinity School).
The genie is not likely to be put back in the bottle. The M.Div. will probably not have the same authority in the future as it's had in the past. It will be similar to the M.B.A.—a valuable degree if it has formed people well and is obtained from a strong program, but not a necessary credential.
I wonder if this ministerial formation change in the emergent church movement and megachurch movement will find its way into Unitarian Universalism.