About Bethany Theological Seminary
A theological school with a long and distinguished history. Bethany Theological Seminary is the graduate school and academy for theological education for the Church of the Brethren. Founded in Chicago in 1905, the Seminary was located there until 1994, when it moved to Richmond, Indiana and affiliated with Earlham School of Religion, a Christian graduate theological school in the Quaker tradition. Bethany is accredited by The Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada and The Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools.
An educational program undergirded by a relevant faith tradition. Rooted in Anabaptism and Pietism, the Church of the Brethren offers a unique blend of practicality and spirituality. We emphasize service, simple living, and the importance of the faith community. Along with the Quakers and Mennonites, the Church of the Brethren is an historic peace church, conscientiously opposed to all war, and intentional about working with peacemaking and reconciliation concerns.
A classroom experience where minds are actively engaged. Our students possess an intellectual daring and an inquisitive, teachable spirit, by which they
* have prepared for graduate study by completing rigorous, comprehensive and well-rounded undergraduate programs, including course work in language and literature, history, the arts, philosophy, religion, sociology, and psychology, and are competent in the use of English as a spoken and written language;
* acquire theological understandings attentive to the biblical story in its entirety and centered in the witness of the New Testament;
* work toward a variety of vocational and academic goals;
* develop competencies in academic reflection and ministry formation necessary for effective ministry, teaching, and other service vocations.
classroom groupWe offer our students opportunities to further refine their field of study through a degree emphasis in Peace Studies or Ministry With Youth and Young Adults. Peace-related courses cover topics ranging from non-violence and the biblical story, to peace witness in the Anabaptist/Pietist tradition, to mediating conflict in families and churches, to peacemaking in national and international arenas. Master of Divinity students pursuing a degree emphasis in Ministry With Youth and Young Adults complete a practicum experience, and Master of Arts students focus their thesis on youth and young adult ministry.
Students in the Master of Divinity program can enroll as residential or Connections students. Connections is designed for persons who cannot relocate to Richmond, and who can commit to taking a mix of classes online, offsite, and on campus as weekend or two-week intensives. One of the primary locations for off-site Bethany courses is the Susquehanna Valley Ministry Center, on the campus of Elizabethtown College in Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania.
We partner with a wide circle of theological schools to further enhance graduate-level educational opportunities. Undergraduate ministry training programs are available to Church of the Brethren members through the Brethren Academy for Ministerial Leadership.