HOLLAND – A large grant will support a pair of initiatives at Western Theological Seminary.
The school received a million dollar grant from Lilly Endowment’s Pathways for Tomorrow Initiative. The funding will support the launch of the WTS Eugene Peterson Center for the Christian Imagination and expand student access to the Hispanic ministry program at Western.
The center opened this fall and aims to continue the work of Eugene Peterson, author of over 40 books and translator of “The Message.” He does this by encouraging pastors, artists and Christians “of hope but often perplexed” towards a “life imbued with God which renews our humanity, our creativity and our sacred vocation”.
This grant will help Western’s Hispanic Ministry program to establish new partnerships, identify and recruit new students, and integrate Peterson’s ministry into its academic programs.
“We are very grateful for this generous grant from Lilly Endowment,” said WTS President Felix Theonugraha. “The church is God’s chosen vehicle for sharing the good news of the gospel – the life, death, and resurrection of His Son, Jesus Christ – and the abundant life we can live through the Holy Spirit.
“We are delighted to have the opportunity, through this grant, to train leaders for the Church of God by cultivating faithful and humble pastoral imaginations and by equipping growing Hispanic congregations in the United States. “
Lilly Endowment’s Pathways for Tomorrow initiative is a three-phase effort to help theological schools in the United States and Canada “prioritize and respond to the most pressing challenges they face as they prepare for pastoral leaders for Christian congregations ”.
The Western Theological Seminary is one of 84 theological schools receiving a total of more than $ 82 million in grants as part of the second phase of the Pathways for Tomorrow initiative.