—Seminary community and guests from around the nation and the world gather in gratitude for 200 years of mission—
Princeton, NJ, October
12, 2012–Princeton Theological Seminary, founded in 1812 as the
first theological institution of the Presbyterian Church, will celebrate the
culmination of its Bicentennial Year with a celebratory service of worship on
Thursday, October 25 at 2:00 p.m. in the Princeton University Chapel. The
service is open to the public.
Seminary president Iain Torrance will
preside at the service, and Dr. Marilyn McCord Adams, the Distinguished
Research Professor of Philosophy at the University of North Carolina at Chapel
Hill, and a 1984 graduate of the Seminary, will preach the sermon, titled
“Rigor and Fire: Formation for the Future.”
A special feature of the service will be
Voices of Community, in which current students and faculty members will read
quotations from past graduates and faculty members about the Seminary’s mission
and history. Included will be quotations from Archibald Alexander, the
Seminary’s first professor; Theodore Sedgwick Wright, its first African
American graduate and the first African American to graduate from any theological
seminary in the United States; James Reeb, a 1953 graduate who was killed in
1965 while marching in Selma, Alabama, during the Civil Rights movement; Jane
Dempsey Douglass, a former faculty member who was the first woman to serve as
president of the World Alliance of Reformed Churches; Abune Paulos, the
recently deceased patriarch of the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church in Addis
Ababa and one of the presidents of the World Council of Churches; John A.
Mackay, the Seminary’s third president and the author of “A Letter to
Presbyterians” condemning the McCarthy hearings in the 1950s; and Kyung-Chik
Han, founder of the Young Nak Presbyterian Church in Seoul, Korea, Korea’s
Special greetings will be brought by
Rochelle Hendricks, the secretary of higher education for the State of New
Jersey and herself a graduate of the Seminary; Alison L. Boden, dean of
religious life and of the chapel of Princeton University; Manuel J. Fernós,
president of La Universidad Interamericana de Puerto Rico, a school founded by
Princeton Seminary graduate J. Will Harris in 1912; and Neal Presa, the
moderator of the General Assembly, the national governing body of the
Presbyterian Church (USA), and a Princeton Seminary graduate.
International guests include Fernós and a delegation from
La Universidad Interamericana de Puerto Rico, which is celebrating its
centennial this year; scholars and churchmen from Scotland and India; and
delegates from the World Council of Churches and the World Communion of
Reformed Churches, both headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland.
Music for the celebration will be provided
by the Seminary Choir, Martin Tel, director; William Heard, a Seminary graduate,
musician, and pastor at Kaighn Avenue Baptist Church in Camden, New Jersey; Eric
Plutz, Princeton University organist; Katherine McClure, flutist from Westminster
Conservatory; and the Somerset Brass Ensemble.
Following the service, the Seminary will
host a Bicentennial reception under a tent on its campus quadrangle at 4:30 p.m.
Music will be provided by the Presbybop Quartet. The Seminary is grateful to
Aramark and PNC Bank for underwriting this reception.
For more information, call 609.497.7760 or
Princeton Seminary was established in 1812
by the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church as a post-graduate
professional school of theology. It is the largest Presbyterian seminary in the
country, with more than 500 students in six graduate degree programs.