Christopher Ocker, who is interim dean of San Francisco Theological Seminary (SFTS) and assistant provost of the University of Redlands, sent the following message to alumni and friends on Jan. 4. The announcement follows deep and careful conversation among the Committee on Theological Education of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) (COTE); the Rev. Dr. J. Herbert Nelson, II, Stated Clerk of the General Assembly of the PC(USA); the Board of Directors of SFTS; and the University of Redlands.
Happy New Year! I am pleased to share that San Francisco Theological Seminary has reached an agreement with the Committee on Theological Education (COTE). The agreement will be presented to the 225th General Assembly (GA) of the PCUSA meeting in June and July. We at the Seminary hope the GA will approve without controversy. We are delighted that COTE reaffirms SFTS “as a Presbyterian theological seminary related to the Presbyterian Church (USA).”
Read the PCUSA news release.
What does it mean for SFTS to be a Presbyterian theological seminary? Presbyterian identity at SFTS has been open, inclusive, ready to change and adapt, guided by Reformed values in teaching, learning, spiritual formation, and preparation for many diverse ministries. Grounded in that identity, SFTS has always promoted preaching framed by rigorous study of scripture; theology critically engaged with the rapidly changing culture of our time; a readiness to repent injustice and call it out; ministries of care not merely compassionate but skillful and informed; spiritual formation attached to the mind and social action; and a commitment to the restoration of the world to God’s just and loving purposes.
Speaking on behalf of the Board of Directors and my colleagues, I thank you for your continued support and your prayers for SFTS!