Concordia Seminary in suburban St. Louis gets an eclectic mix of students in a program allowing them to train for the ministry online–electricians, farmers, entrepreneurs–and even a founder of one of the best-known thrash metal bands.

David Ellefson plays bass for Megadeth. He also is an online student in the Specific Ministry Program at Concordia Seminary operated by the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch ( http://bit.ly/wGuzF1) reported that Ellefson’s studies illustrate why distance learning programs at seminaries have a growing popularity nationwide, allowing students to attend divinity schools without uprooting their lives.

Even in a non-traditional learning setting, Ellefson is a non-traditional student given his band has recorded albums with titles such as “Killing Is My Business … And Business Is Good!”

The curious mix of rock and religion has been part of Ellefson’s life since childhood. Growing up in Minnesota, his family drove from their farm to Our Savior’s Lutheran Church each Sunday. Ellefson, now 47, was confirmed there at age 16.

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