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Seabury-Western Theological Seminary

Seabury-Western Theological Seminary (SWTS) was a seminary of the Episcopal Church, located in Evanston, Illinois. It ceased operations as a residential seminary granting the Master of Divinity degree in May 2010, and in January 2012 it moved from Evanston to the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America headquarters near O'Hare Airport. In 2013, it federated with Bexley Hall seminary to form the Bexley Hall Seabury Western Theological Seminary Federation, the federation then moved to the second floor of Chicago Theological Seminary in July 2016 to continue to offer its academic degrees including its Master of Divinity degree. The Federation is commonly known as Bexley Seabury.[1]

Cornerstone of Seabury Divinity Hall in Faribault, Minnesota

Seabury-Western was formed in 1933 by a merger of Western Theological Seminary of Evanston (founded in 1883 in Chicago), and Seabury Divinity School of Faribault, Minnesota (founded in 1858). The new seminary endeavored to hold in tension the "High Church" and "Low Church" identities of its predecessors. However, for most of its history, SWTS occupied a place within Anglican churchmanship akin to that of the General Theological Seminary in New York: a liturgical bent toward Anglo-Catholic practices and an acceptance of modern theology and social tolerance.

In the fall of 2008, the seminary stopped accepting seminarians for the traditional Master of Divinity degree. In 2009 Seabury's Evanston property was acquired by Northwestern University, with Seabury allowed continuing use of it for five years. In January 2012 Seabury formally left the Evanston site, functionally ending its presence as a residential seminary, and its former buildings are now used by the Northwestern University. The seminary moved its offices to the national headquarters of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), near O'Hare Airport. In March 2012, the boards of Seabury-Western and of Bexley Hall Seminary in Bexley, Ohio, voted to federate.[2] Roger Ferlo was named as the federation's first president.[3]

Inaugurated April 27, 2013, Bexley Seabury seminary initially offered the Master of Divinity degree at the former Bexley Hall campus in Columbus through a partnership with Trinity Lutheran Seminary.[4] From its Chicago campus near O'Hare Airport, the federation offered its Doctor of Ministry degree in Congregational Development and also a Doctor of Ministry degree in Preaching, through the Association of Chicago Theological Schools.[5] A Diploma of Anglican Studies was offered in both Columbus and Chicago.[6]

In July 2016, Bexley Seabury consolidated on a single campus location at Chicago Theological Seminary in Chicago's Hyde Park/Woodlawn district. There, it offers the Master of Divinity degree and two Doctor of Ministry degrees (in Preaching, through the Association of Chicago Theological Schools) as well as the Diploma in Anglican Studies and continuing education and lifelong learning courses.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Bexley Seabury
  2. ^ [1], "An Historic Moment for Bexley and Seabury". Retrieved 14 August 2014.
  3. ^ [2], "Roger Ferlo to Lead Federation of Seabury and Bexley". Retrieved 14 August 2014.
  4. ^ [3], "Master of Divinity." Retrieved 14 August 2014.
  5. ^ [4], "Doctor of Ministry." Retrieved 14 August 2014.
  6. ^ [5], "Diploma in Anglican Studies." Retrieved 14 August 2014.

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