Lancaster Seminary, Moravian College & Seminary To Explore Combining Institutions

April 21, 2021

April 21, 2021 – Today, Moravian College, including the Moravian Theological Seminary, and Lancaster Theological Seminary announced the formation of a joint committee to explore combining the two historic institutions.

Moravian College, founded in 1742, Moravian Seminary, founded in 1807, and Lancaster Theological Seminary, founded in 1825, have long and storied histories of providing educational and formational opportunities for students from a variety of backgrounds and have prepared generations of students to serve the church and the world.

“These discussions are very preliminary, and we’ve just begun to identify where and how the joining of Moravian and the Lancaster Theological Seminary could benefit the students, faculty, and communities we both serve,” comments Bryon Grigsby, president of Moravian College. “The reputation of the Lancaster Theological Seminary speaks for itself in terms of the quality of the faculty, the leadership, alumni, and the programs they provide to their students. I’m excited at the possibility, but there’s still much work to be done and many conversations that need to take place.”

Moravian Theological Seminary is part of Moravian College and offers several professional theological programs for students from various religious backgrounds. In the fall of 2020, Moravian College announced that it would be transitioning to University status in the summer of 2021 as the college grows and continues to offer both undergraduate and graduate programs leading to master and doctoral degrees.

Lancaster Theological Seminary offers various masters, doctoral and certificate programs, including online classes providing Continuing
Education credits (CEUs) for lay ministers, bi-vocational leaders, individuals in discernment, and others.

“This conversation is an opportunity to explore the possibility that our seminaries’ combined strengths can create an ecumenical divinity school that is even greater than the sum of its parts,” said Rev. Dr. David Rowe, interim president of Lancaster Theological Seminary. “Progressive theological education should model for the church and the world the power of alliance and unity as stewards of a common mission to transform lives for the transformation of the world.”

Several meetings among the respective boards, leadership, and faculty at both institutions are planned for the coming weeks, and updates on combining the two institutions will be provided as they become available.

Once the exploration process is completed, a report regarding a new relationship between Moravian College, Moravian Theological Seminary and Lancaster Theological Seminary will be presented to the respective Boards of Trustees and the Moravian Church for final approval.

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