Wilmer Ramirez, PhD
Associate Dean, Diversity and Programming with Ethnic Communities; Director of Hispanic Initiatives
Training Hispanic Leaders
The IDEAL Institute is a lay-level ministerial program that offers classes in Bible and theology to Hispanics in the metro Denver area. Taught entirely in Spanish, the purpose of the institute is to train Hispanic leaders through the systematic instruction of the entire Word of God.
IDEAL (pronounced ee-day-ALL) is an acronym in Spanish which stands in English for the Institute for the Development and Training of Leaders. Dr. M. Daniel Carroll R. founded IDEAL in 2005 to meet the growing need for theological education in the Hispanic community in Denver. After experiencing tremendous growth, in August 2006 Wilmer Ramírez, an adjunct faculty member of the Seminario Teológico Centroamericano (SETECA), took over as Director. Today the program boasts over 180 total graduates and currently has 161 students enrolled.
IDEAL courses are taught at Denver Seminary by Wilmer and Vioneth Ramírez, as well as a host of guest lecturers (see Our Faculty). Study materials for the courses are produced by SETECA in Guatemala, where Wilmer Ramirez serves as adjunct faculty. Students enrolled in IDEAL attend class, complete study materials, memorize Bible verses, do regular devotionals, and carry out ministry projects.
The Institute is also part of a larger partnership between Denver Seminary and SETECA. Currently, Denver Seminary is assisting SETECA build a Masters of Counseling Program and helping to improve their library resources. Conversely, one SETECA professor speaks at Denver Seminary’s annual biblical studies conference and IDEAL uses materials published by SETECA for all its classes. This global partnership supports one of Denver Seminary’s core strategic initiatives, which seeks to identify “multicultural and global dynamics,” and build strategies to share Christ with a multicultural and multiethnic world. As Denver Seminary seeks to train leaders for a globalized church, IDEAL brings an international perspective to theology right here at home.
The IDEAL institute offers two basic programs of study: the Plan Básico and the Plan Ministerial. The Plan Básico offers 11 classes on themes ranging from “What the Bible Teaches” to “The Growing Church.” This program can be completed in one year. Offered once a month on either Saturday mornings or Thursday and Fridays nights on the seminary campus, the classes aim to provide the student with the knowledge and basic tools for a stable and fruitful Christian life.
After completing the Plan Básico, students can move on to the Plan Ministerial. ThePlan Ministerial is a two-year program of 20 classes that continues to provide courses in Bible and theology as well as on ministry in the local church. This group studies topics such as “Old and New Testament survey”, “Homiletics”, “Pedagogy” and more. Classes meet once a month on Saturdays on Denver Seminary campus.
Basic Course Plan
- HIBAS101 – How to read the Bible
- HIBAS102 – Doctrinal Survey 1
- HIBAS103 – Doctrinal Survey 2
- HIBAS104 – Cultivating Spiritual Growth 1
- HIBAS105 – Evangelism
- HIBAS106 – Old Testament Characters
- HIBAS107 – Doctrinal Survey 3
- HIBAS108 – New Testament Characters
- HIBAS109 – Cultivating Spiritual Growth 2
- HIBAS110 – Christology in the Gospel of John
- HIBAS111 – The Church in Acts
Ministerial Course Plan
- HIMIN201 – Spiritual Disciplines in Leadership
- HIMIN202 – Old Testament Survey 1
- HIMIN203 – Christian Leadership
- HIMIN204 – Old Testament Survey 2
- HIMIN205 – Ethics and Values
- HIMIN206 – New Testament Survey 1
- HIMIN207 – An effective Church
- HSMIN208 – New Testament Survey 2
- HIMIN209 – Ministerial Strategies
- HIMIN210 – Oral Communication
- HIMIN211 – Spiritual Gifts and abilities
- HIMIN212 – Biblical Interpretation
- HIMIN213 – Ministry and human development
- HIMIN214 – Pastoral work
- HIMIN215 – Strategic Christian Leadership
- HIMIN216 – Biblical Preaching
- HIMIN217 – Biblical Teaching