What is it that draws two and a half million visitors to Holland, Michigan each year?
It’s the perfect setting for weekend getaways, family vacations, and year-round recreation, with acres of beaches and parks, and festivals and events for every season. Holland, Michigan is home to the world famous Tulip Time festival each May, when more than six million tulips burst into bloom as the town celebrates its Dutch heritage.
Unique restaurants, quaint cafes, and farm markets add to an enjoyable day of shopping in Holland’s Victorian-styled downtown, which borders the lovely campus of Hope College. Holland has a rich history and strong values.
The corporate worship of God is a deeply formative activity – spiritually, educationally, and institutionally; it is at the heart of what we do here at Western Theological Seminary. So every day we gather as a community to pray for ourselves and for our world, to sing and to be silent, to confess and receive pardon, to testify to God’s grace and lament our world’s brokenness, to praise and to petition, to proclaim, celebrate the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper together, and to enact the good news.
Our pattern Monday through Thursday conforms to the structure of daily prayer followed for centuries by the precursors of academics, the medieval monks. It has four primary components: Praise, Psalm, Proclamation, and Prayer.
Services begin with an acknowledgement of who God is, and the natural response to that knowledge, Praise.
We then turn to the ancient prayer-book of God’s people, the Psalms, and pray one of them as our own, in word or song or images or actions.
The Word is then Proclaimed as a way of telling God’s story, of getting a God’s-eye view of the world the way it really is.
Finally, we focus on Prayer as the place where we re-present the world and its concerns to God, where God and God’s people speak to one other heart to heart.
Who leads the services?
Students plan and lead services Monday through Thursday with the assistance of faculty and members of the Worship Committee. Faculty lead worship of Friday as the WTS community participates in our weekly practice of coming around the Lord’s Table to celebrate Holy Communion and to “taste and see” how good God is.
Formation for Ministry Internships
Internships are part of the formation for ministry process at Western Theological Seminary and provide a breadth of experience while going deep through the use of learning covenants and case studies of actual ministry experience.
Ministry settings may include:
Care Facilities and nursing homes
Matching students and ministry sites is an important part of the WTS educational experience. We want to discern the best ministry context for each student’s learning and to connect that student with an internship at a supervised ministry (or “Teaching Church” site). Students can suggest ministry sites that interest them.
We want to offer housing options that will help you connect with other students and feel at home. Options for in-residence program housing include:
The “Red Bricks” Townhouses
Directly across from the seminary
Encircle a commons area with picnic tables and a playground
1, 2, or 3 bedroom units
Washer & dryer
Major kitchen appliances
Handicapped accessible units available
Wireless internet and wired for cable
The Friendship House
The Ralph and Cheryl Schregardus Friendship House is the first residence of its kind among seminaries across the U.S. Seminary students live with young adults with cognitive impairments, giving students who are training for ministry a unique opportunity to learn what it’s like to live with disabilities.
3 students and one cognitively-impaired adults per apartment pod
Each apartment pod has 4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, full kitchen, living room, and a deck/patio
6 apartment pods in the building
Recreational room with widescreen TV, fireplace, and full kitchen
Wireless internet and wired for cable
Alternative housing and rental units are available in the Holland area.
Housing ranges from $295-$995 per month depending upon the location and number of bedrooms in the unit.
For questions or to apply for housing contact Norm Donkersloot at 616-392-8555, x107 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Distance Learning Intensive Lodging
Lodging options for distance learning intensives will be sent to students prior to the start of the semester. These options will vary in price and will be the responsibility of the student to secure. Please call Carol Ann Bailey (616-392-8555 x167) with any questions.
Pastor Theologian Lunch
Tuesdays, Fall Semester, 12-1 in Room 19
Join us for PTL: Pastor Theologian Lunch on Tuesdays for an informal gathering where students and faculty are invited to dialogue theologically about issues and circumstances that arise in internships, jobs and everyday ministry- and eat pizza! Dr. Todd Billings and Dr. Suzanne McDonald will be faculty hosts. We will meet from 12:00pm -1:05pm in Room 019. Space is limited, so please RSVP (each week) to reserve your spot!
Student Council advocates for student concerns and provides programming that engages the entire student body. The council is made up of representatives from each class and a faculty advisor and meets regularly throughout the academic year.
Student Government responsibilities:
Addressing academic concerns
Involvement in mission
The 2020-2021 Student Government Body:
President: Jackson Nickolay
In Resident Vice-President: Emily Anderson
Distance Learning Vice-President: Maddie Lambert
Treasurer: Lex Cummings
Scribe: Tom Oord
Junior Representatives: TBA
Middler Representatives: Andrew Kalthoff and Reghan Harms
Senior Representatives: Miranda Craig and Stephanie Rodriguez
Th.M. Representative: TBD
Distance Learning Student Representatives:
5th Year Representatives: Pat Irwin and Kat Hatting
4th Year Representative: Gregory Frank
3rd Year Representative: LaCosta VanDyk
2nd Year Represenative: Scott Crowder
1st Year Representative: TBA
Friendship House Representatives: Ben Bush & Rob Sterken
Faculty advisor: TBA
In addition to annual events like the All-Seminary Picnic and Spring Banquet, students at Western regularly participate in a variety of activities, often coordinated by Student Council.