LSTC News Release
LSTC ranks among top 20 U.S. seminaries for multifaith education
Posted Mar 18, 2010
In a study of 150 Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist and multi-religious institutions, conducted by Auburn Theological Seminary’s Center for Multifaith Education, the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago ranked among the top 20 for multifaith education. The top 20 seminaries are listed in alphabetical order, and not further ranked.
LSTC’s courses on Jewish contributions to Christian thought, on Islam, and on Christian-Muslim relations, offered for more than two decades; the seminary’s welcoming Muslim students from around the world to study for advanced degrees; and the work of A Center of Christian-Muslim Engagement for Peace and Justice helped place it among the top 20 for multifaith education.
“We live in an increasingly multi-religious world in which people of different faiths live and work together,” said LSTC President James Kenneth Echols. “In today’s world, religious leaders need to be acquainted with this reality, and I am gratified that LSTC has been recognized for its outstanding leadership in multifaith education.”
Rabbi Justus Baird conceived and oversaw the study which was led and managed by Dr. Lucinda Mosher. Auburn undertook the study because “religious leaders are increasingly unable to be fully successful in their roles without the ability to reach across lines of faith for certain aspects of their ministry. . .[and that] Clergy discover people of all faiths in the pews, and meet diverse family members in hospital waiting rooms and funerals, with little understanding of how to minister to them effectively. Further, historical developments of religious traditions are sufficiently intertwined that even to understand one’s own tradition requires knowledge of other faiths.”
The purpose of the study was “(1) to learn more about the degree to which multifaith education occurs in U.S. institutions which train religious leaders and the form it takes; and (2) to identify and promote best practices in mulitfaith education for religious leaders.”
Funding for the study came from the Henry Luce Foundation.
Other seminaries in the top 20 include Yale Divinity School, Hartford Seminary, Boston University School of Theology, Catholic Theological Union, Harvard Divinity School, Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, Union Theological Seminary, and Naropa University Department of Religious Studies. See the complete study at www.auburnseminary.org/seminarystudy.
For more information on LSTC’s interfaith education, visit the web page for A Center of Christian-Muslim Engagement for Peace and Justice at http://centers.lstc.edu/ccme/, and details in LSTC's catalog.
Assistant to the Academic Dean
Director of Communications
The Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago forms visionary leaders to bear witness to the good news of Jesus Christ. Its approximately 290 students come from all parts of the United States and from around the world to study in the masters level and advanced studies programs. Graduates become pastors, other church leaders, and university and seminary professors. LSTC is a seminary of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and a member of the Association of Chicago Theological Schools, allowing students to cross-register among the 12 member seminaries and drawing on a wealth of ecumenical resources. LSTC enjoys a number of cooperative arrangements with the University of Chicago.