Annual Report 2022
Friends in God,
As we reflect on the year past and look forward to the next, I find myself asking: What does CTS care about? In his book The Greatest Gift, Henri Nouwen writes, “Caring together is the basis of community life… Together we reach out to others. Together we look at those who need our care… The mystery of this caring together is that it not only asks for community, but also creates it.” What do we care about together as a community? Upon what is our community built? If we want CTS to continue to thrive into the future, we must be able to answer these questions.
Christian Theological Seminary has several resources to help us articulate and practice the work we are called to do, but I find myself returning to two that are particularly critical for us to lean into: our values and our strategic plan. Developed by listening to our constituents and creating an actionable plan to reach our goals, CTS 2030: Project Transformation is our path for caring together. Our values set the foundation for how we build that path and walk it together. Affirming God-given human dignity, working towards justice for all, embracing diversity, advancing scholarship and formation, promoting healing and wholeness throughout all creation are the guiding principles for how we join God in the transformation of our world.
Our society is in desperate need of the values CTS promotes. We are inundated daily by stories that highlight our world’s hunger for hope, justice, and healing. There are people all over our country living in communities where they have not seen examples of these values, especially in a communal format. There are people without conversation partners and many who lack communities of support. There are marginalized children all over this country who do not realize it is possible to be both Christian and their authentic selves. Put simply, people around our nation experience oppression and prejudice because they do not have access to communities of faith who proclaim the liberative love of God.
I challenge you to join me in thinking about every aspect of the work we do through those lenses. The stories shared in this report demonstrate some of the many ways members of the CTS community live out our values.
Whether you come to CTS as a student, a staff member, a faculty member, a benefactor, an alumnus, or a like-minded friend, you are joining God’s transforming of the world with us. Fundamentally, amidst all the good things we do, this is our shared goal – creating community by caring together about transforming the world according to our shared values.
Christian Theological Seminary continues to be a community that helps people realize there is a place they can go, a community where they can thrive, and a vision of Christianity where they are welcome. Thank you for being a part of this community!
In the Spirit,
David M. Mellott, PhD
President and Professor of Theological Formation