United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities
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|Affiliation||United Church of Christ|
|President||Rev. Dr. Barbara A. Holmes|
|Location||New Brighton, Minnesota, U.S.
|Dean||Dr. Sharon Tan|
United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities (United) is an ecumenical graduate school of the United Church of Christ located in New Brighton, Minnesota, United States. The school was formed in 1962 with the merger of Mission House Seminary of Plymouth, Wisconsin (the current day Lakeland University), and Yankton School of Theology in Yankton, South Dakota (the defunct Yankton College, now site of the Federal Prison Camp, Yankton).
Like the UCC itself, United reflects the merging of two denominational backgrounds: Mission House was related to the Evangelical and Reformed Church, while Yankton was one of the numerous schools affiliated with the Congregational Christian Churches. The UCC was formed from the merger of those two bodies, which took place between 1957 and 1961, and United was the premier institutional expression of that landmark in ecumenical relations among American Protestants. Despite being formally affiliated with the UCC, the United charter states that the school is ecumenical, independent, and multi-denominational. This is in keeping with the generally liberal, tolerant stands of the UCC tradition.
United offers the following degrees: Doctor of Ministry, Master of Divinity, Master of Arts in Religious Leadership, and Master of Arts, as well a Certificate Program and a Diploma in Advanced Theological Studies for international students. The school champions social justice, the integration of arts and theology, and interfaith dialogue. United hosts the annual Summer Institute in Spirituality and the Arts; houses the Kaleo Center for Faith, Justice & Social Transformation, a United initiative; and publishes ARTS: The Arts in Religious & Theological Studies, a journal devoted to the study of the arts and theology. The United campus also has a brick Outdoor Community Oven, an apiary which produces the seminary's Holy Honey, a prairie landscape restoration project with butterfly garden, and raised garden beds.
In 2004, United consecrated the Bigelow Chapel as an addition to the campus. Designed by Joan Soranno and John Cook of Hammel, Green and Abrahamson, Inc., the chapel exhibits floating planes of glass, precast stone walls, and a series of translucent curving wood panels. Two external towers house Deagan chimes.
Bigelow Chapel is the winner of numerous awards for its innovative architecture, including the 2006 Honor Award for Architecture from the American Institute of Architects, and the 2004 Honor Award from the Minnesota Society of the American Institute of Architects.