Seminaries in Washington State

Elect_Exile

Puritan Board Freshman
It has been some time since anyone posted endorsing seminaries from Washington State. I have seen endorsements for Northwest Theological Seminary in Lakewood, WA, but apparently they closed their doors in 2018 and went 100% online. I have also seen at least one endorsement for Faith International (University &) Seminary, in Tacoma, which seems to still be in good standing. Faith's top 3 learning outcomes are as follows: "1) Acquire an ability to study the Bible in Hebrew and Greek and to conduct biblical exegesis in order to properly interpret the Scriptures; 2) Acquire an ability to understand the creeds and doctrines of the historic Christian church; 3)Acquire an ability to defend the orthodox teachings of the Bible." It says it was founded as a "Faith Evangelical Lutheran Seminary by Lutherans Alert-National (LAN), an organization committed to biblical inerrancy." Anyone have any thoughts on this school? Is it still worth looking at?

What about any other accredited reformed schools in WA state? I'm aware of Western Reformed Seminary. Someone mentioned Northwest Baptist Seminary, which I realize is not reformed, but apparently has a good library with a decent collection of reformed literature. They got subsumed by what is now Corban University in Salem, OR. It appears they are still quite dispensational as well.

My reason for asking is my wife's family is almost entirely in WA state and she wants to live there/near there. But I also need a reason to move there for seminary that doesn't completely compromise my convictions or where I'm not constantly disagreeing with profs/students.
 
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Romans922

Puritan Board Professor
The calling to Pastor requires many sacrifices...

Sorry I'm no help, I don't know any good seminaries in WA.
 

Paul1976

Puritan Board Freshman
Someone in my church attended a primarily online MDiv degree program from RTS in Orlando. He needed to travel to Orlando for several weeks per year semester I believe, but was able to complete most of his studies from LV. Our church employed him as a pastoral assistant during that time which helped make it practical. He's now a pastor of a nice reformed church that is doing well and growing. This was all pre-pandemic - the online approach was designed so students could attend while having meaningful roles in a local church which would not be possible in a seminary town. He liked the program, so I'd say it's worth looking into.

From what I can tell, quality conservative reformed seminaries are few and far between. I would strongly suggest an online program at a good one over enrolling in a program that is either well below the good ones in terms of either theology or quality.
 

Elect_Exile

Puritan Board Freshman
The calling to Pastor requires many sacrifices...

Sorry I'm no help, I don't know any good seminaries in WA.
Indeed it does. The challenge, as I'm sure many a full-time minister can attest to, is gracefully shepherding your wife and family (I have 4 small kids) so that they thrive as much as you do in pursuit of God's call. Also, I should add that it's not a matter of having enough funds to support the family. It's more about the competing visions my wife and I have for our family's future.
 

Paul1976

Puritan Board Freshman
Obviously, no one here can help you weight looking after the specific and unique needs for your family.

I'd suggest

1) Researching seminaries you can attend and around in WA.
2) Researching distance-learning programs like the one my friend attended.
3) Examining several seminaries you would attend on campus that you consider ideal in terms of excellence and sound theology .

Research the cost, time to degree, ministry opportunities during a degree (an advantage of distance learning is you can probably have a meaningful church position during your studies) and everything else about the programs.

Once you've done that, you'll have a clearer picture of what the trade-offs are. You and your wife can sit down, talk through them and see what makes the most sense for your family. Personally, since seminary is likely a huge time/financial commitment for several years followed by a unique career path afterwards, I would want my wife in agreement before setting down that path.
 

VictorBravo

Administrator
Staff member
I have fond connections to Western Reformed Seminary in the Tacoma area. Several good men have come out of it.

It is small, certainly. I took classes there a decade ago and thought it was fairly rigorous. I'd suggest calling them up and, if you can, arranging a visit, especially if family is nearby and you can make it a multipurpose trip.

Faith has a good language program, at least it did ten years ago.

It's been over a decade since I've been in the area, so I'm going off of what I knew then.
 

JTB.SDG

Puritan Board Junior
Love your desire to shepherd your wife and family well.

I would echo and look into the idea of doing most of it online from WA through RTS, etc.

But also if the competing visions is her not being sure about being the wife of a pastor etc there may be more to weigh.
 

arapahoepark

Puritan Board Post-Graduate
Western Reformed for sure! If you are getting into a NAPARC denomination regional or ATS accreditation won't matter. Plus WRS is solid.
 

John Yap

Puritan Board Freshman
RTS Hybrid - go to Orlando once every semester for 2 weeks or so.
GPTS / PRTS have also hybrid programs
 

Ethan

Puritan Board Freshman
It's more about the competing visions my wife and I have for our family's future.

I would want my wife in agreement before setting down that path.

if the competing visions is her not being sure about being the wife of a pastor etc there may be more to weigh.

If your concern is to faithfully shepherd your family and your wife is not supportive of your pursuit of ministry then it seems like a no brainer to me.
 

Elect_Exile

Puritan Board Freshman
If your concern is to faithfully shepherd your family and your wife is not supportive of your pursuit of ministry then it seems like a no brainer to me.
Why do you think it’s a no-brainer? I’m not suggesting we drag our wives completely against their will or make them into a one-size-fits-all role of “pastor’s wife” that a lot of women dread for a plethora of reasons. Plus there’s the time factor. Maybe it’s not the right time now but it might be later. Maybe it’s the right decision but it requires patience from us as the husbands to wait on God to move in our wives’ hearts. And then there’s the Martin Lloyd-Jones admonition for those of us who “cannot do anything else” except to, for example, preach, which cannot so easily be dismissed out of hand just because our wives aren’t on board right away. All of this is a complex decision matrix to sort through. It’s not quite so cut and dry as you suggest, with all due respect and charity.
 
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