What do our faculty, staff, students, and alumni have in common? We are dedicated to the art of bridge-building. In a world where language, race, religion, culture, and economics often divide people and obstruct work for the common good, we have chosen to connect instead of divide, to talk instead of debate, and to work together instead of on our own. From the very beginning, the school’s bridge-building culture and curriculum have emphasized focused and collaborative action across inclusively Christian and Unitarian religious traditions and has grown in the past few years into a national, and increasingly international leader, in interreligious dialogue and collaboration.

This work is too important for us to do alone. We host interfaith dialogue groups for Christians, Unitarians, Jews, Sikhs, Buddhists, Muslims, Hindus, and those spiritual but not religious to talk about their own beliefs, seeking to understand each other more deeply, and ultimately working together for the common good. The school has been funded by prominent foundations to start projects addressing some of the most crucial challenges of our age, like family homelessness, student debt, and the impact of the world’s growing religious pluralism. The school has over 150 advisors that believe in what the school is working towards—from executives in the business world to national and international faith leaders.

We believe that the only way to prepare for work in diverse communities is to be IN a diverse learning community—a safe place to grow and develop that looks a lot like the communities you’ll be serving. It’s not just about having intermingling voices present but finding a way for each voice to get to the microphone. In Seattle University’s School of Theology and Ministry, we encourage each individual voice and story to be completely true to itself and distinctly heard. We foster that kind of deep listening, past-the-surface reflection, and intentional learning about lived spirituality from people groups and cultures.

What this means for students

For all of our students in every degree program, these partnerships and collaborations keep the student grounded in their spiritual beliefs while learning and growing in a diverse community.

For students seeking ordination, or other leadership positions within a faith community, the School of Theology and Ministry’s formal partnerships with inclusively Christian groups (otherwise known as denominations) provide a student face-to-face mentorship and direct and regular assistance in navigating the requirements for ordination and leadership.  Each of our signed partners appoints a formal Outreach Team that meets regularly to discuss and troubleshoot student needs throughout their degree programs. Students receive phone calls, emails and participate in gatherings with their denominationally-linked ordination companions in support of their degree program.

Partnerships, Signed

  • African Methodist Episcopal Church
  • American Baptist Churches of the Northwest
  • Church of the Brethren, Oregon-Washington District
  • Community of Christ, Greater Pacific Northwest USA Mission Center
  • Episcopal Church in Western Washington, Diocese of Olympia
  • Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, Northwest Washington Synod
  • Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, Southwestern Washington Synod
  • Presbyterian Church (USA), Alaska-Northwest Area
  • Mennonite Church USA, Pacific NW Conference
  • Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)
  • Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Seattle
  • Unitarian Universalist Association, Pacific Northwest District
  • United Church of Christ, Pacific Northwest Conference
  • United Methodist Church, Pacific Northwest Conference
  • Community Collaborations:
  • Inclusively Christian & Interreligious
  • Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, Lynnwood
  • Alki United Church of Christ
  • All Saints Catholic Church, Puyallup
  • Archdiocese of Alaska
  • Associated Ministries of Pierce County
  • Church Council of Greater Seattle
  • Church of the Nazarene, Puyallup
  • Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon
  • Faith Action Network
  • First Presbyterian, Everett
  • Helping Hand House, Puyallup
  • Housing Development Consortium of King County
  • Interfaith Association of Northwest Washington
  • Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers
  • Muslim Association of Puget Sound
  • Newport Presbyterian, Bellevue
  • One Another Foundation, Seattle
  • Real Change, Seattle
  • Region XII Leadership Conference of Women Religious
  • Seattle First Baptist Church
  • Seattle Union Gospel Mission
  • Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary
  • Society of Jesus, Oregon Province
  • St. James Cathedral, Seattle
  • St. Mark’s by the Narrows, Tacoma
  • Tacoma Housing Authority
  • Temple Beth Am, Seattle
  • Temple Beth El, Tacoma
  • Temple Beth Or, Everett
  • Temple De Hirsch-Sinai Seattle / Bellevue
  • United Black Clergy, Washington State
  • United Church, Arlington
  • United Way of King County
  • Washington Low Income Housing Alliance

Community Voices

“I am very grateful for the ecumenical spirit that Seattle University’s School of Theology and Ministry brings…I want to thank the School for building such a quality ecumenical seminary.”

Bishop Grant Hagiya, Greater Northwest Episocpal Area

“In an era of social and ecclesial fragmentation, we need programs such as those at Seattle University’s School of Theology and Ministry that insist on educating students from a wide variety of confessional and cultural backgrounds.”

Rev. Michael Kinnamon, Ph.D., Former General Secretary, National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA

“This school cannot be overlooked. It is vital, not only for the formation it offers its students but for how it shapes and forms our greater community.”

The Rt. Rev. Gregory H. Rickel, Bishop, The Episcopal Diocese of Olympia

“The attitude of Seattle University’s School of Theology and Ministry is incredibly inclusive and humble. Because of a dinner meeting for Buddhist leaders in the community, organized by the school, I became friends with Buddhist monks from different countries and traditions. Now we are frequently inviting each other and co-organizing various events. The school actually strengthened the Buddhist community in Seattle, and I am grateful for the astonishing generosity of the school. I would never have expected a Jesuit university to support and foster Buddhist sanghas. Thank you very much.”

Rev. Taijo Imanaka, Head Priest, Seattle Koyasan Buddhist Temple