Greetings from the Admissions Office of Westminster Theological Seminary. I trust that you will find valuable information here that will help you decide if Westminster is the place for you. Please take the time to read more about our institutional history and identity as that shapes our educational philosophy and objectives.
As the Director of Admissions, the most frequently asked question I hear about our seminary is, "How do you prepare people spiritually and practically given your rigorous academic commitments?" Westminster is unashamedly committed to both "solid learning" and "piety of the heart," as the Old Princeton faculty used to say.
In order to understand Westminster's commitment to both academic excellence and spiritual nurture, it is helpful to understand that this has been the commitment of the church and her centers of learning throughout history. The monasteries of the Middle Ages, though often misunderstood, were committed to a combination of serious study and a holy life. They refused to separate sapientia (wisdom) from scientia (study); and it was the scientia sacrae scripturae (the study of sacred Scripture), that was their primary preoccupation. Life and doctrine were and are inextricably related.
This same combination of learning and godliness was the concern when the first Presbyterian seminary in America was founded. Upon the organization of Princeton Theological Seminary in 1812 a "plan" for the seminary was drafted. The plan states that
"It ought to be considered as an object of primary importance by every student in the Seminary, to be careful and vigilant not to lose that inward sense of the power of godliness which he may have attained; but, on the contrary, to grow continually in spirit of enlightened devotion and fervent piety; deeply impressed with the recollection that without this, all his other acquisitions will be comparatively of little worth, either to himself, or to the Church of which he is to be a minister."
The affinities between Old Princeton and Westminster can be clearly seen by a comparison with our own strategic plan, which states
"Westminster exists to glorify God by forming ministers of the Gospel who are 'specialists in the Bible,' whose understanding of the Word of God has produced in their hearts 'holy affection' for their Lord, and who, in their interpretation and proclamation of the Scriptures, lead Christ's church in faithful worship and global ministry."
Westminster is committed to what the church's centers of learning have always been committed to: the development of a deep walk with God through careful study of the Word of God. If you are interested in a seminary education that will challenge both your mind and your heart then Westminster is the place for you. Please contact us for more information. I look forward to hearing from you soon.
Sincerely in Christ,
Daniel A. Cason
Director of Admissions