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Indonesian Minister Interweaves Lessons from Home and United

Rev. Hardiyan Triasmoroadi SquareRev. Hardiyan "Adi" Triasmoroadi (DMin, Directed Study)

Ordained as Reverend of Indonesia’s East Java Christian Church (Greja Kristen Jawi Wetan) in 2005, doctoral student Hardiyan “Adi” Triasmoroadi leads through three interwoven fundamental ecclesiological principles. He calls them the “3M theses.” They are: Mengatur (regulating), Membebaskan (liberating), and Merengkuh (embracing).  He came to United to examine, test, and further develop the "3M theses" through a new lens and perspective.

In his many leadership roles at the church and synod, Adi keeps these principles in mind. He is secretary of the church order revision team, convenes the synod’s organizational and managerial team, and facilitates a new retreat house (Kori Menga—Javanese for open door), all while attending United via distance learning.

Adi was first drawn to United in 2017 when he met beloved United professor Dr. Eleazar Fernandez at the Global Institute of Theology sponsored by the World Communion of Reformed Churches in Wuppertal, Germany. In 2021, when Adi’s synod gave him a chance to expand his education, he immediately chose United.

Still, the path he’s chosen has distinct challenges. So how does Adi manage to bridge the cultural, time zone, language, and myriad other differences between his church life in Indonesia and seminary work at United? “It was not easy,” he admits, “but I’m grateful for this opportunity.”

“I feel like this is me being forged. The distance learning United offered has not been making me live out of my context. I’m able to inhale local concerns and breathe in my church’s challenges. At the same time, I’m able to inhale the insight I’ve gotten from classes and exhale solutions that contribute to my synod and my ministerial setting.

“I am grounded in local action and church context while at the same time I have a chance to drink from the cup of wealth offered by United’s professors’ and classmates’ wisdom. This hybrid process and multidirectional perspectives I have gotten has inextricably enriched my pilgrimage and my spiritual foundation as Reverend of the East Java Christian Church.”

United’s focus on art and creativity is another touchstone for Adi. A drummer and percussionist, he is also interested in music and theatrical performance art for liturgical purposes. “I love to sketch,” Adi adds, “since my last fall course encouraged me to retrieve my doodling spirit.”

In addition to being a student and church reverend, Adi is a devoted husband and the father of two children, 12-year-old Adhya and his eight-year-old sister, Lulu. He describes his mother as a “warrior princess” for working to make sure he received a quality education. “Her persistence,” Adi asserts, “inspired me to courageously face every obstacle in life.”

Adi faces the logistical trials of juggling family, work, and school. Recent global and national challenges have included the pandemic and sectarian violence in his country. These devastating environmental factors have brought Adi’s church, he reports, to a liminal or transitional space.

“Liminality,” Adi observes, “is an opportunity from which I can learn to pause, embrace the Unknown, celebrate the Mystery, and enter discernment space through United Seminary.”

“I hope,” he adds, “United empowers and navigates me to walk the unknown path through its intertwined perspectives on arts, theology, and social transformation. With the help of United’s progressive and constructive character, hopefully, I can listen mindfully to my church problems, map our past glorious and bad time stories, embrace trauma and uncertainty, clearly see the reality, and reveal the soul of my own church organization.”

Taking lessons from Mary Magdalene—the apotola apostolorum, or apostle to the apostles—Adi concludes that “being a vulnerable pastor and leader is a must.…In such a crisis that brings humankind to the depth of trauma and misery, a vulnerable leader who compassionately and passionately ministers from the margin, rooted in the awareness of Jesus’ path, is urgently needed. With the help of United Seminary, hopefully, I can fulfill that expectation and diligently work on it!”


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