Mission, Vision, Values & Marks

Based in Chicago’s Hyde Park neighborhood, the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago (LSTC) is the leading urban Lutheran seminary training students to serve in the global community. True to our Lutheran heritage and built on a foundation of intellectual rigor, we equip students for visionary ministry.

Mission

The Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, a seminary of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America forms visionary leaders to bear witness to the good news of Jesus Christ.

Vision

The Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, a seminary of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, seeks to build up the Body of Christ and work for a world of peace and justice that cares for the whole creation.

Values

  • LSTC is Christ-centered. We strive by God’s grace to follow Christ’s call to loving service.
  • LSTC is responsive to its context. We embrace our diverse urban setting and exciting academic environment that enable learning from and ministering to the community. Relationships with synods and congregations provide academic and practical experiences that meet the needs of the church.
  • LSTC is attentive to diversity. We emphasize knowing and honoring the perspectives of all nationalities, ethnicities, cultures, Christian traditions, and religions to form leaders whose witness to the Gospel will build communities of hospitality and reconciliation.
  • LSTC is committed to excellence. We send leaders into the church and world who are prepared academically, practically, and spiritually to serve in a variety of vocational and ministry settings. Faculty members are faithful Christians who are internationally recognized scholars and teachers. Administration and staff strive to provide exemplary service to all constituents.

Marks

  • Urban: LSTC is an urban seminary that believes the best way to prepare leaders to witness to the gospel in any setting is to provide them with a diversity of experiences found in a large city. This context is also crucial for those intending to specialize in urban ministry.
  • University-related: LSTC is located by intention near the University of Chicago. Through interaction with the university faculty and students and other educational resources, including the university’s libraries, LSTC relates theological education and ministerial preparation to the wider search for wisdom in society.
  • Multicultural: LSTC’s theological commitment to diversity is a high priority and makes the seminary a rich environment in which to equip leaders of all cultures
  • Ecumenical: LSTC is a member of one of the largest theological consortia in the world, the Association of Chicago Theological Schools. This resource and the contributions of it its own ecumenical staff, faculty, and student community members give students access to a broad array of opportunities for education that is thoroughly Lutheran yet respectful of other Christian traditions.
  • Global: LSTC equips leaders for the church in the United States and the world, engaging the gifts that international faculty, students, and their families bring to the community, and structuring a curriculum that integrates care of creation and worldwide peace and justice into its degree programs and daily life.
  • Interfaith: LSTC’s specializations in Christian-Muslim and Jewish-Christian relations and its wideranging studies in world religions and interfaith dialogue prepare students to exercise pastoral and public leadership in an increasingly multi-faith world.

Strategic Plan

Our 2018-2020 Strategic plan maps the process for LSTC to be a community to form leaders to form community.

We believe that our communities cannot be restored without leaders who are able to nurture the gifts of those who gather, organize them for shared purpose, and guide them in a sustained vision. Such leaders do not happen automatically but must be formed in communities that model faithful living in all of its complexity and promise.

A Reconciling in Christ Seminary

As a Reconciling in Christ seminary, LSTC seeks to offer hospitality and welcome to all who enter LSTC's academic programs. Following Jesus Christ, whose reconciling love bridged barriers and made strangers friends, we seek to welcome and learn from one another's particularity-including but not limited to one another's race, national or ethnic origin, age, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, physical ability, social status and theological diversity.

About the LSTC Campus Land

LSTC recognizes that our school stands on the lands of the Potawatomi, Miami, and Peoria peoples. For thousands of years before their forced removal, this was their traditional homeland, and it continues to hold their ancestral stories and wisdom. We honor and thank the elders of these and other nations, past and present. These lands are still home to many indigenous people, and we are grateful to learn in this place.

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