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An Open Letter to CTS Alumni and Friends from President Mellott

April 2, 2020

Dear Alumni and Friends of Christian Theological Seminary,

I hope that this message finds each of you staying safe and healthy as we navigate this time of change and uncertainty. As you can imagine, this was not the way I envisioned my first spring semester at CTS. Working from my home office I miss the sounds of students walking down the corridor, the smell of Maarten’s delicious meals wafting through hallway, and the personal interactions with faculty, students and staff. However, I write to you today to let you know that the transformational and thoughtful education that you expect from CTS is still happening. If anything, the significance of our mission and values have become even greater at this moment. Our commitment to fostering ministry that is intellectually rigorous, spiritually formative, and emotionally supportive is desperately needed.

Our classrooms may have been transformed into virtual spaces, but make no mistake, Christian Theological Seminary is committed to providing academic, theological, and pastoral formation of leaders for church and community. How are we doing this? We are protecting our students, faculty and staff by moving all of our spring and summer semester classes online. We have closed our buildings until May 1st but continue to be flexible, knowing that there may be a need to extend that date into the future. We are investing in technology, training and equipment to support our faculty, supervisors, and residents as they teach and serve through online platforms. Our staff continue to support the needs of the seminary and its students from their virtual offices. And our grant programs continue, offering support to congregations, clergy, and other service organizations.

We are continuing to serve not only our students but also the many, many community members that rely on our Counseling Center and its services. Thanks to new technologies that support teletherapy, we remain a reliable resource for those who need us, perhaps now more than ever.

We are planning for the future. While we have made the very difficult decision to move our commencement ceremony to a virtual celebration, we are committed to being innovative and creative as we honor and celebrate our graduates. Acknowledging that the future is unknown, we are still developing fall programs, kicking off our strategic planning conversations, and planning for future gatherings of the CTS community. In all that we, our students, faculty and staff do, we remain committed to our mission and remain steadfast in our faith.

We entrust ourselves to the love of God, along with you and our elders in the faith. We cling to the words, “…nothing can separate us from God’s love in Christ Jesus our Lord: not death or life, not angels or rulers, not present things or future things, not powers or height or depth, or any other thing that is created” (Romans 8:38 CEB).

Let us continue to pray for each other and for the life of the world.

In the Spirit,

David M. Mellott

 



Also included in the April 2020 Christian Theological Seminary Connection

 

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