Throughout the difficult process of Alliance University losing its accreditation and ultimately ceasing operations, C&MA leadership remained committed to Alliance seminary education and, ideally, maintaining its ministry training presence in New York City. It remains critically urgent that The Alliance continue to equip its leaders with the core beliefs and distinctives that have always and will continue to drive our shared All of Jesus for All the World vision. Toward this end, the C&MA Board Executive Committee appointed Joel Wiggins, a recognized leader in Alliance higher education, to lead a transition team to explore options for a future C&MA seminary model.
After prayerful exploration of a range of options, the team narrowed its focus to a potential partnership with Asbury Theological Seminary for several strategic reasons:
- The C&MA and Asbury have had a longstanding, fruitful relationship.
- The institutions share many essential theological beliefs.
- Asbury is in a strong and sustainable financial position.
- Asbury has a passion to extend seminary education to NYC, where the Alliance has deep roots and longstanding relationships.
With input from the transition team, along with Alliance President John Stumbo, AU President Rajan Mathews, and former Dean of Alliance Theological Seminary Ron Walborn, Joel submitted a letter of intent to Asbury, which culminated in an August visit by the transition team to the Asbury campus in Wilmore, Kentucky.
Recently, Asbury signed contracts with former Alliance Theological Seminary professors Charles Galbreath, Stanley John, and Ron Walborn in establishing its New York City presence. While there is strong, high-level agreement on many essential issues, much remains to be worked through. Within the next few months, Asbury and C&MA leaders will meet to clarify the remaining areas of agreement necessary to finalize the partnership.
Together we give thanks for the door God is opening to sustain a viable seminary presence that preserves and propels our Alliance theological and spiritual distinctives. Please pray that these discussions will continue to bear lasting fruit in equipping future Alliance leaders and maintaining a vital presence in the city where our movement began.