H o u s t o n G r a d u at e School of Theology Empowering Spiritual Leadership 路 The
mission of HGST is empowering spiritual leadership through the intellectual, spiritual, and vocational development of men and women in order to advance the gospel of Jesus Christ throughout the world
Our Mission & Faith
Our Mission & Faith Houston Graduate School of Theology seeks to empower spiritual leadership through the intellectual, spiritual, and vocational development of men and women in order to advance the gospel of Jesus Christ throughout the world. The school fosters student growth by challenging and strengthening our studentsâ€™ minds and encouraging our students to discern, yield to, and cultivate Godâ€™s calling in their lives. At HGST we confess our faith in Jesus Christ and commit our lives to him and to the service of his church. We affirm our faith, not in order to exclude from the circle of faith those who may differ on some point, but rather to offer a positive witness to the reality of our experience of Christ as Lord and Redeemer within the community of faith that has nurtured us. We are: Evangelical Though our students represent a variety of theological perspectives, HGST consciously identifies with historic evangelical Christianity. We encourage our students to share the good news of Jesus Christ, and offer both a certificate and degree program focusing on missional leadership. Multicultural HGST brings together women and men from a wide range of ethnic, cultural, economic, and language backgrounds. We welcome students from around the world who come to participate in both our masters and doctoral programs. The result is a unique blend to our campus life that you will not find in many other seminaries. Multidenominational HGST encompasses a broad spectrum of faith experiences. We have many different denominations represented in our student populations, and we encourage the passionate espousal of personal convictions within an atmosphere of mutual respect for difference.
Presidentâ€™s Welcome For nearly thirty years, HGST has provided high quality theological education for men and women who serve in a wide variety of ministry settings. Few seminaries anywhere exhibit our unique cluster of characteristics. We are boldly evangelical by celebrating the transformative power of God in our lives and world. We are broadly multidenominational in that our faculty and students represent as many as thirty denominational and non-denominational traditions. While we help each student to develop a wellintegrated set of values, beliefs, and practices, we explore with respect and sensitivity a range of theological and ecclesiological perspectives. We are richly multicultural with students who represent many ethnic backgrounds and congregational styles. The seminary is on the cutting edge of affirming the vitality of the missional church movement. Rather than continually repackaging religious goods and services for a consumer-driven church culture, this exciting trend stresses the radical challenge of participating in Godâ€™s uncontrollable redemptive activity in our lives and culture. We also acknowledge that our declarations of discipleship too commonly fall well short of biblical ideals. Ancient and contemporary practices of faithfulness are part of our emphasis on Christian spirituality. HGST is fully accredited by The Association of Theological Schools to offer several degrees. Some of our students want graduate level theological training for personal growth or as a base for research doctorates and pursue the two-year Master of Theological Studies degree. Others prepare for ministry as congregational leaders or Christian counselors by completing the Master of Divinity or Master of Arts in Counseling degrees. For experienced ministers, we offer an outstanding Doctor of Ministry degree. Not only are our
programs an excellent financial value but the classes are conveniently scheduled for bi-vocational and part -time students. We are a learning faith community that cares about and supports one another. We look forward to the opportunity to discuss what God is doing in your life and how we may partner to learn and grow together. Blessings! James H. Furr, Ph.D. President & Professor of Practical Theology and Christian Ethics
Why Seminary? One of God’s best gifts is the call to a new form or quality of ministry. Perhaps you have a clear sense of God’s direction or maybe you are in a serious process of discernment. A seminary experience may be the ideal opportunity for that call to become better defined and for your leadership gifts to be strengthened and nurtured. Quick Facts
HGST is the leading provider of theological education in Houston and Southeast Texas, offering more course options at different times, in each of its full terms, than any other school. Numerous other courses are available in summer and special “mini” terms. The HGST student body numbers approximately 175 enrolled in all degree programs. HGST’s student body contains many “second career” students, who bring a high degree of maturity and experience to the classroom. HGST has awarded over 700 earned degrees, plus several honorary doctorates. HGST reflects its “Evangelical Friends” heritage in the rich diversity, openness, and inclusiveness of its student body, faculty, and staff. HGST’s student body is a model of ethnic and racial diversity, reflecting the complex population of Houston itself. HGST has enrolled students representing more than 17 nationalities, many of whom have returned to roles of leadership in overseas missions or other foreign Christian ministries.
Degree Programs At HGST, you will find affordable costs, small classes, dedicated faculty, and a wide variety of day, evening, and weekend class times designed to meet your needs. We are Houston’s only fully accredited, evangelical, multicultural, and multidenominational seminary. We strive to nurture our students’ spirits while leading them toward higher levels of scholastic achievement. We offer four degree programs for students seeking to grow in their ministry as well as three certificate programs that can be added to our degree programs or taken separately.
Doctor of Ministry The Doctor of Ministry (DMin) degree is an advanced professional degree designed for those in pastoral and para-church ministries. The DMin degree program is composed of ministry-oriented, doctoral-level courses, which cover topics such as preaching, evangelism and outreach, spiritual formation, and leadership. HGST allows DMin students to specialize in one of three areas: Pastoral Leadership addresses congregational systems, leading through change, and ministry in a post-modern culture. Directed by Dr. Ken Shuman Pastoral Care combines the best of pastoral ministries and counseling disciplines to inform students regarding concepts and practices in this field of study. Directed by Dr. Jerry Terrill. Spiritual Direction and Formation provides a way for students to receive spiritual direction certification while completing the Doctor of Ministry degree program. Directed by Dr. Mike Luedde.
Total Semester Hours: 43 Cost Per Credit Hour: $390
H o u s t o n G r a d u a t e S c h o o l o f T h e o l o g y
Master of Divinity
The Master of Divinity (MDiv) is the basic professional degree for ordained ministry in the local church and other ministerial leadership positions. The students and faculty of HGST represent a wide range of denominational and ministerial backgrounds. The HGST MDiv degree is designed to encompass the breadth of traditions reflected in our students and staff while connecting those traditions to the historic Christian church and faith. The depth of the HGST course work is enriched by the diversity of tradition and experience represented by our students and faculty. Total Semester Hours: 87 Cost Per Credit Hour: $390
Master of Theological Studies
The Master of Theological Studies (MTS) is an academic degree focused on a specific theological discipline or concentration within a general theological discipline. HGST offers 4 concentrations in the MTS degree: biblical studies, theological studies, missional theology, and Christian spirituality. This degree is designed for those who desire to continue beyond the MTS into further graduate study or who desire a focused area of learning at the graduate level. The final project for the MTS degree is the presentation of a student portfolio and summative paper in the area of concentration as part of an interdisciplinary capstone course. Total Semester Hours: 50-52 Cost Per Credit Hour: $390
Master of Arts in Counseling
The Master of Arts in Counseling (MAC) is a professional degree that provides the academic preparation required for taking the Texas Licensure Exam for either Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) or Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT). In addition, it integrates the most current trends in counseling theory with study of Christian faith and practice. Each degree requires 12 credit hours in biblical and theological studies, a 2-hour integrative seminar, and 48 hours of counseling courses, including at least six credit hours of supervised practicum experience. Total Semester Hours: 62-65 Cost Per Credit Hour: $390
Direction may also be obtained by adding the same nine hours to a completed Master of Theological Studies degree with a Christian Spirituality concentration. The certificate requires 28 credit hours. The Certificate in Christian Spirituality is designed for clergy, counselors, other religious professionals, and lay persons who wish to enhance their ministries with a thorough practical program that will enable them to lead and teach in institutional settings, small groups, and one-on-one situations in the areas of Christian Spirituality and spiritual direction. This program requires nineteen hours of Master’s level credit in Christian Spirituality leading to certification in this field. or an MDiv degree.
The Certificate in Missional Leadership is designed for men and women involved in ministry and desiring to be more missional in thought and action. For those seeking to participate in the mission of God in the world, this certificate offers theological, biblical, spiritual, and philosophical foundations for such ministry. The graduate certificate may stand alone for those already in ministry and not desiring a master’s degree. However, the student may also pursue the Certificate in Missional Leadership as part of an MTS—Missional Theology.
The Certificate in Spiritual Direction is designed for students who desire more extensive preparation in the area of Christian Spirituality than the Certificate in Christian Spirituality entails, and who feel called to serve as Certified Spiritual Directors, This program requires 28 hours of Master’s level credit—the nineteen hours of the Certificate in Christian Spirituality with an additional nine hours for certification as a spiritual director. The Certificate in Spiritual
Missional Leadership: 25 Hours Christian Spirituality: 19 Hours Spiritual Direction: 28 Hours Cost Per Credit Hour: $390
H o u s t o n G r a d u a t e S c h o o l o f T h e o l o g y
HGST faculty members present scholarly papers and plan for educational opportunities abroad The regional meeting of the Society for Biblical Literature (SBL) draws Professor of Old Testament, Dr. Chuck Pitts, and Professor of New Testament, Dr. Douglas Kennard, each year. This year was no exception. Joining his professors in March 2012 was David Flowers, who graduated in May with the Master of Theological Studies degree with a concentration in Biblical Studies. Both professors presented academic papers at the conference. In addition to the SBL paper, Dr. Kennard’s work covers a variety of topics for presentation at several locales. All were presented this spring: Evangelical Theological Society - “The Reef of the OT: A Method for Doing Biblical Theology that Makes Sense for Wisdom Literature” (accepted for publication in 2013 in the Southwestern Journal of Theology) Society for Biblical Literature - “Romans 5, Pauline Imputation: The Hittite Covenantal Roots and the New Covenant Internal Realization” Institute for Biblical Research - “Let the Bible Have its Voice: Gagging Theological Hermeneutic” American Academy of Religion Philosophy of Religion section - “A Biblical and Philosophical Critique of Anselm’s Argument for the Chalcedonian Formula for Christ’s Hypostatic Union as Presented in Cur Deus Homo, with Extended Critique of Melancthon’s Penal Substitutionary Atonement and Milgrom’s Second Temple Atonement” Dr. Kennard’s new book, A Critical Realist Theological Method: Returning to the Bible and Bibli-cal Theology to be the Framer for Theology and Science. CORE Issues in Creation, vol. 6 (Eugene, OR: Wipf & Stock, 2012), is scheduled for release later this summer. In addition, he will be a plenary speaker at the Origins 2012 conference in Purcellville, Virginia, July 28-29, 2012. Dr. Pitts focused his topic on issues surrounding the abuse and misinterpretation of the Jeremiah 29:11 passage: “For surely I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for your welfare and not for harm, to give you a future with hope.” Besides a solely scholarly approach to the passage in “Jer. 29:11 in Its Canonical and Contemporary Context,” Dr. Pitts presented a contemporary view of how this verse in particular is used or misused within the context of 21st-century culture and how a better understanding could impact believers in a paper titled “Jeremiah 29:11 as a 21st-Century Church Paradigm.”
Admission Requirements Master’s Programs & Non-Degree Students Students applying for our Master’s programs must have a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university. Applicants to the MDiv and MAC programs must have had an undergraduate GPA of at least 2.5. Applicants for the MTS degree must have had an undergraduate GPA of at least 3.0. In addition, MAC applicants must have taken the GRE within the last five years. GRE scoring procedures have recently changed, and HGST is currently re-evaluating the minimum score required for acceptance into the MAC program. We will update this page with minimum GRE score requirements when they become available. In addition to the application, applicants to the Masters programs must submit: An application fee ($50 before the application deadline and $100 after the deadline) Official transcripts from all post-secondary schools previously attended sent from the school to HGST Three reference forms (one academic, one pastoral, and one personal or professional) Completed admission questions for the appropriate program (MAC, MDiv, MTS, ND) A GRE score if applying to the MAC program Completed English Proficiency Exam (taken at HGST)
Doctor of Ministry Program Students applying for the Doctor of Ministry must have earned a Master of Divinity degree from an accredited institution with a minimum GPA of 3.0. Additionally, these applicants must have had three years of experience in ministry after achieving their first theological degree, and they must be actively involved in a ministry setting. In addition to the application, Doctoral applicants must submit: An application fee ($100) Official transcripts from all post-secondary schools previously attended sent from the school to HGST Three reference forms (one from a denominational supervisor, one from a ministry colleague, and one personal) A church endorsement form or a commanding officer endorsement letter (for military chaplains only) Completed admission questions A TOEFL score if English is not the student’s primary language – students must score at least 550 (written), 213 (computer-based), or 79 (internet-based)
H o u s t o n G r a d u a t e S c h o o l o f T h e o l o g y
Transfer Students & Special Cases Students who wish to transfer to HGST from another seminary must follow the same application procedures as outlined above. These students must petition the Academic Office, in writing, to grant transfer credit. The Academic Office may request additional information, such as course descriptions or syllabi, before granting transfer credit. Students who are currently attending other institutions but who wish to take a few classes at HGST do not need to submit transcripts from their previous academic work. These students only need to submit the following: A letter of good standing from the registrar at their current school An HGST application & fee Students who need to take additional courses to satisfy denominational or state licensure requirements must submit the following: A letter from their denomination or the state indicating that they are required to take additional coursework A transcript showing their most recent degree An HGST application & fee
International Students In addition to other admission requirements, international students must obtain an F-1 visa and submit the following:
Evaluated international transcripts sent directly to HGST from the credentialing agency I-20 Application Form Certificate of Finance & Affidavit of Support Immigration Documentation Processing Fees TOEFL exam scores
Tuition and fees Credit Hours (MTS/MAC/MDiv) $390 per hour Doctor of Ministry $390 per hour Student Services Fee $200/semester Immigration Documentation Processing Fee $135 Financial Aid Nearly 60% of our student body receives aid in the form of federal student loans; subsidized (need-based) and unsubsidized (non-need based) loans through the William D. Ford Direct Loan Program. Graduate Students are eligible for up to $20,500 in Stafford Loans per year. The Cost of Attendance determines how much a student may be eligible for during a given period. Need is determined by the federal government through the FAFSA process. All student loans must be repaid.
What our alumni are doing around the world Our alumni are doing amazing things in the world, and we are proud to highlight their accomplishments! Our graduates are a part of advancing Godâ€™s kingdom around the world. George Creamer
prisoners for making hammocks, bracelets, handbags,
Soccer player, Navy officer, and HGST alum are just
key chains, and change bags. These handmade crafts not
some of the monikers May 2011 graduate George
only provide income to the men and women who make
Creamer can claim. Born in Honduras to an American
them but are also a source of positive self-esteem for
father and a Honduran mother, George came to the
people in desperate need of both. After each visit to
United States for high school and attended the New
Honduras, George returns to Houston with countless
Mexico Military Institute. After high school, The
items available for sale at area festivals, church fairs,
University of New Mexico Lobos called and George
and craft shows. If you would like to help the men and
answered, playing soccer and graduating with a degree
women incarcerated in Honduran prisons and their
in Business Administration. Despite his business degree and years as a member of the U.S. Navy after college, George felt the call to return to the country of his birth and to minister to men and women in Honduran prisons. In 2006, he first investigated organizations with active prison ministries already in place, but George began working on his own in 2007. Originally, George planned to work primarily as a preacher but soon found the need for a more holistic ministry was critical. Unlike prisons in the United States where physical needs of prisoners are paid by the federal, state, and local governments, Honduran prisoners have to depend on family members, friends, and other outside support to provide for such basic needs as food and clothes. The prison system provides four walls for the inmates but nothing else. George felt he had to find an additional way to connect with the men and women
families, please feel free to contact George Creamer at
he was trying to serve. As George learned his way
email@example.com. George is still part of our
through the Honduran system, he began to search for
student community at HGST as he continues additional
ways the inmates could earn money for their families
coursework for his DMin. Thank you, George for all
and themselves while in prison. With help from
youâ€™re doing to help in this very needed ministry!
friends, George began to supply materials to the Page 12
W w w. h g s t . e d u HGST
Endorsements – Student and Alumni I must say that HGST has truly challenged me and developed me on so many levels. The professors are very gifted and knowledgeable. The writing standards continue to stretch me into being a better writer and thinker as well. Dr. Towne, Dr. Kennard, and Dr. Pitts are really good teachers with a wealth of knowledge and unique teaching styles. I am glad that I'm here at HGST, and I fully support the school's belief in education and excellence. –ANDRE LEWIS, DMIN CANDIDATE Houston Graduate School of Theology is an encouraging, life-giving place. If you are interested in pursuing a formal theological education, I commend the school to you highly! –JIM HERRINGTON, DMIN CANDIDATE SPECIALI ZING IN SPIRITUAL DIRECTION AND FORMATION
“I am thankful for the excellent DMin program at HGST. The work is challenging, but I feel like the team at HGST has offered me excellent guidance in this process. I look forward to the challenge.” –REV. WICK STUCKEY, MDIV, DMIN CANDIDATE SPECIALIZING IN SPIRITUAL DIRECTION AND FORMATION
HGST has taught me so well. I am interacting this week with DMin seminarians from around the US and UK. And, I must say, I know all they know and more! So, I have a special gratitude in my heart for the Doctor of Ministry classes. We were and are taught well! –PATRICIA GREENLEAF, MDIV, DMIN CANDIDATE SPECIALIZING IN PASTORAL LEADERSHIP
HGST God’s Call One of God’s best gifts is the call to a new form or quality of ministry. Perhaps you have a clear sense of God’s direction or maybe you are in a serious process of discernment. A seminary experience may be the ideal opportunity for that call to become better defined and for your leadership gifts to be strengthened and nurtured. HGST is well-prepared to join with you in that process as you grow in Christian character, acquire new competencies, and develop life-long partners. Visit Us
Come explore our degree programs, experience a class, talk with current students, and finish the visit over conversation with our faculty. If you’ve heard God calling you into a new season of preparation for ministry, then this is the perfect time for you to get to know HGST! 2501 Central Parkway, Suite A-19 Houston, Texas 77092 Phone: 713-942-9505 Toll Free: 877-TRY-HGST Fax: 713-942-9506 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Accreditation and Affiliations Houston Graduate School of Theology is accredited by the Commission on Accrediting of the Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada, and the following degree programs are approved: Master of Theological Studies, Master of Arts in Counseling, Master of Divinity, and Doctor of Ministry degrees. The Commission contact information is: The Commission on Accrediting of the Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada,10 Summit Park Drive, Pittsburgh, PA 15275 USA; telephone 412-788-6505; fax 412-788-6510; website www.ats.edu We are listed in the Education Directory: Colleges and Universities, published by the Office of Educational Research and Improvement of the U.S. Department of Education Center of Statistics, and we are a member of the Council of Southwestern Theological Schools (COSTS). HGST has also been approved by the State Approving Agency to process veteran benefits.