Chicago Theological Seminary

Dr. Robert Moore is a Distinguished Service Professor of Psychology, Psychoanalysis, and Spirituality in the Center for Theology, Ethics, and the Human Sciences at the Chicago Theological Seminary, an interdisciplinary institute for advanced study in the philosophical, theological, and ethical implications of the various human sciences. Sample courses include: Psychopathology in Theological Perspective, Jungian Psychology and Contemporary Spirituality, Victor Turner on Ritual Process, and Paul Tillich on Theology, Ethics and Human Sciences.

The Chicago Theological Seminary prepares men and women for transformative religious leadership within the context of the religious and secular issues that affect the daily lives of all human beings. Unintimidated by controversy, the seminary had a distinguished century-long record of setting trends in church life and leadership.

The very first CTS curriculum in 1855 provided for the scattering of students among congregations and missions across the Midwest. Students were encouraged to learn first hand the facts of community life and church needs in a restless, experimental culture. Although such a practice was unknown at that time, this curriculum was the beginning of the first field education component ever introduced into seminary education. Field Education is now a part of every accredited professional theological degree program.

Today CTS continues this tradition with its focus on contextual learning. Students in every degree program engage in ministry within diverse settings and actively participate in supervised critical reflection and intentional transformative ministry.

Seminary faculty and students were activists in the abolitionist movement and the underground railroad prior to the Civil War. CTS was the first institution of higher learning to give an honorary degree to Martin Luther King, Jr. and is proud of its association with the Civil Rights movement and the struggle of South African Christians against apartheid. An honorary degree was conferred on Bishop Desmond Tutu in 1986.

Today diverse student activist groups engage similar issues of concern. Academic course work addresses both individual and systemic evil. Global connections with progressive seminaries in South Africa and the Pacific Rim open us to world issues seeking transformation.

Graham Taylor established at CTS the first distinct Department of Christian Sociology in an American theological school. Working closely with Jane Addams in Chicago, Taylor established the Chicago Commons settlement house and a graduate school of social work which later became the University of Chicago's School of Social Service Administration.

Today CTS enjoys a close working relationship with the University of Chicago School of Social Service Administration, offering a joint M.Div./M.A. (M.S.W.) degree. CTS also co-sponsors the Urban Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) program, a distinctly different approach to ministerial training that uses Chicago as its base. This program is housed at CTS.

In 1902 CTS graduated Florence Fensham, the first woman in the United States to prepare for ordination with a Bachelor of Divinity degree. She served as Professor of Old Testament and Dean of Religious Work at The American School for Girls in Constantinople.

Today CTS faculty are leaders in feminist and womanist theological concerns and are globally engaged in developing a more mature masculine spirituality for our time.

While a faculty member at CTS, Anton Boisen worked with a group of CTS students in order that they might become competent in ministering to the physically, mentally, and emotionally ill, and from that experience helped to found the Association for Clinical Pastoral Education (ACPE). Boisen's ashes are interred in the CTS cloisters.

Today CTS is widely recognized as a leader in the field of Pastoral Care. Chicago also offers the richest array of Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) settings in the nation. In addition, CTS has established a cooperative D.Min. CPE programs with both Advocate Health Care and the University of Chicago Medical Center.

In the sixties and seventies CTS Professor Ross Snyder shaped new understandings of ministry in the Christian community. He contributed fresh theoretical frameworks for interpreting religious development throughout the life-span, pioneered in innovative celebration and religious education, and brought the resources of phenomenology to the work of the minister.

Today CTS and its faculty are on the cutting edge of ministry, equipping transformative leaders for the real world. Innovative courses and case conferences help students critically reflect upon specific instances of ministry from their own engagement in that world.

In 1965 CTS launched a Doctorate of Religion program, one of the first professional doctorates in ministry. As standards for the professional doctorate were established by the Association of Theological Schools, the Seminary became one of the initial group of six schools to have fully accredited programs of study for the Doctor of Ministry degree.

Today CTS arguably offers the best D.Min. program accredited by the Association of Theological Schools. Instrumental in getting the national D.Min. organization (A.D.M.E.) off the ground, CTS has also played a key role in designing cooperative D.Min. programs in Preaching, Religious Education and Spiritual Leadership.

Because of a deeply held conviction that training for ministry needed to combine the study of Christian faith and the world of secular knowledge and action, during President Ozora Davis' tenure in the 1900's, CTS moved to the vicinity of the University of Chicago. Under his leadership the magnificent buildings of the seminary were financed and constructed, and the relationship with the University firmly established.

Today CTS has Ph.D. programs focused upon "Bible, Culture and Hermeneutics (Jewish & Christian Scriptures)" and "Theology, Ethics and the Human Sciences." Housed at CTS, The Center for Jewish, Christian and Islamic Studies is the only American program of its kind based in a free-standing theological seminary. Students in the Theology, Ethics and Human Sciences concentration enjoy resources appropriate to experientially and theoretically integrate theology with the human sciences. Graduates are uniquely equipped to teach, serve and minister within today's world.

The present moment in history is not one in which a distinctly different Seminary can carry on "business as usual". There must be a creative response to the emerging needs of our age. The following pages give some of the shape and substance of this Seminary's effort toward preparing men and women for ministry toward the renewal of church and culture. Chicago Theological Seminary intends to nurture and to strengthen such creativity and such response. To learn more, visit the Chicago Theological Seminary.