Theological Education in the Episcopal Church

Date: January 12, 2024

This has been an eventful week. I spent most of the week in Austin, Texas. We had two days exploring the challenges of theological education in the Episcopal Church. It is a complicated picture. We have eight or so Episcopal seminaries; there are probably forty or so non-Episcopal universities or seminaries training future priests in Houses of Study; we have eight-five dioceses who have local formation programs (many drawing on the Seminary of the Southwest Iona collaborative); and we have a clergy shortage.

There is much to learn from this data. The Deans of the Seminaries are starting to think about how best to both collect the data about theological education and the needs of the Episcopal Church. How many clergy (and other lay leadership) do we need? What is the capacity of our educational system to train congregational leadership? These are important questions.

We are in for an interesting season as we think about the best way forward to shape our training of Episcopal congregational leadership for the future.

The Very Rev. Ian S. Markham, Ph.D.
Dean and President of Virginia Theological Seminary and the President of The General Theological Seminary


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