The General Theological Seminary of the Episcopal Church in New York is facing a major financial challenge. The seminary has a $30 million debt and declining denominational support, increased fixed costs, maintenance needs, and decreasing numbers of students.
According to a letter written by the president of the seminary, General Theological Seminary spends about $8 million a year, and brings in about $5 million. The difference is drawn from the institution's dwindling $20 million endowment.
The president has sent a letter to alumni and parishioners saying: "The time to help the General Seminary is now."
The problem faced by General Seminary is the same problem faced by Seabury-Western Theological Seminary, another seminary of the Episcopal Church, this one located in Chicago. On February 20, 2008, the administration of Seabury-Western Seminary decided that it would no longer admit students into their program.
It is sad that the Episcopal Church in the USA is struggling to recruit students to attend their seminaries and that the denomination is not supporting their theological schools with enough funds for them to carry out their mission of preparing men and women for the ministry. In the end, it is the cause of Christ that suffers.
I hope the General Theological Seminary will find the help it needs.
Professor of Old Testament
Northern Baptist Seminary
Tag: Episcopal Church, General Seminary