Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, announces a comprehensive Campaign called How Will They Hear?, designed to secure $77 million in gifts and commitments for three major interconnected components essential to a Christ-centered theological education in the 21st century. This effort is Concordia Seminary’s first campaign in more than 20 years. Started in 2005 in a quiet, advanced gifts phase, the Campaign was initiated to make sure that Concordia Seminary remains fiscally ready and able to continue and build upon its mission in the future.
The national public launch of the Campaign included a special worship service for the opening of the academic year on Sept. 7 in The Chapel of St. Timothy and St. Titus on the Seminary campus. After the service, more than 400 people attended a gala dinner at the Chase Park Plaza Hotel in St. Louis, funded by the Lutheran Legacy Foundation.
The Campaign’s timetable encompasses the five fiscal years from July 1, 2005, through June 30, 2010, and has achieved more than $53.3 million of its goal to date. A number of upcoming regional launch events around the United States will take place this winter hosted by Dr. Dale A. Meyer, president of Concordia Seminary.
The theme of the Campaign, How Will They Hear?, is based on Romans 10:14-15: “How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written, ‘How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news.’”
“How Will They Hear? is about ministry,” commented Dr. Dale A. Meyer, president of Concordia Seminary. “It is about making sure we have pastors, deaconesses, and other church professionals for the next generation and beyond. I believe God has blessed the Seminary with many people who share a passion for seeing to it that God’s Word is proclaimed and people are served.”
The three components of the How Will They Hear? Campaign include “Pastors, Place, and Promise.” The following funding challenges make up each of the three components:
Pastors—Prepare more pastors of the highest personal, spiritual and intellectual caliber to serve people, their families, and their communities as God’s people in the world; meet the needs of a demographically changing student body; equip future pastors with specialized multi-cultural and contextual-specific ministry skills; and update and enhance the skills of current pastors to help them build meaningful relationships with people who are diverse both culturally and ideologically. – $44.25 million
Place—Reposition and renovate the campus for the future via high priority upgrades to buildings, technology and infrastructure to support a variety of programs both in St. Louis and around the world. A prioritized list of projects will lay the groundwork for a Campus Master Plan. – $17.75 million
Promise—Build the Seminary’s endowment into a significant, predictable and stable source of income – an endowment less subject to fluctuations in the economy, enrollment trends and/or direct giving patterns. This endowment will sustain the formation of today’s and tomorrow’s pastors, missionaries, deaconesses and church leaders. – $15 million