Funding your PC(USA) seminaries
Eleven seminaries are funded through two giving programs: the Theological Education Fund (1% Plan) and the Theological Schools Endowment Fund.
Voluntary contributions from congregations to the Theological Education Fund (1% Plan) and contributions and/or bequests made by individuals to the Theological Schools Endowment Fund are the only sources of denominationwide funding for theological seminaries related to the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).
Our seminaries need your help
The top 12 things you should know about our seminaries
1. We have 10 Presbyterian seminaries nationwide, plus two that are closely affiliated. As Presbyterians, we place a high value on an educated clergy. It is a hallmark of our denomination — indeed, a source of pride. To continue this tradition of excellence, we have entrusted 10 Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) seminaries and two theological institutions related to the denomination by covenant agreement with the responsibility of educating and equipping persons of faith for pastoral leadership.
Find the rest of the top 12 things you should know about our seminaries.
Invest in the future of our denomination
One of the continuing strengths of the Presbyterian Church is a competent ministry, well-educated in the Reformed Tradition. Your seminaries provide pastors, educators, missionaries and chaplains for the work of Christ's church. They also offer continuing education programs for those seeking on-going renewal of spirit and competence for ministry. By sharing together in financial support of our theological schools, we affirm our church's historic roots and assure leadership for our church in the years to come.
Your denomination's seminaries are funded through a two-part system consisting of the Theological Education Fund (1% Plan) and the Theological Schools Endowment Fund.
Give to the Theological Education Fund (TEF) 1% Plan
Each congregation makes a voluntary contribution of 1 percent of their local operating budget (all monies expended for current operation of congregations as reported in the General Assembly Minutes, Statistical Reports, Part II, Line 25). Some churches are not able to begin at a full 1 percent and adopt more modest goals, such as one-fourth or one-half of 1 percent, and set a goal to increase that percentage each year until full 1% participation is achieved. This gift to the Theological Education Fund is the congregation's proportionate share for the education of present and future ministers and church educators. The Theological Education Fund is the only source of denomination-wide financial support received by your seminaries.
Support the Theological Schools Endowment Fund (TSEF)
Individuals may support the entire theological education enterprise through gifts and bequests. The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) Foundation manages this fund with income to be used in support of our seminaries.
Your congregation can participate in the TEF 1% Plan
We know budgets are already tight when your session makes its proposal based on priorities set for your congregation's work and witness to the gospel. Your congregation can begin with a commitment of less than 1 percent. Even a small contribution to the TEF is an important investment in the development of future leaders for your congregation and the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).
No need to redirect other mission funds
The 1% Plan is not intended to redirect funds currently given for mission. Your congregation's additional commitment to the 1% Plan is based on your understanding of the urgent need for preparing future church leaders. A commitment to fund theological education is essential to the future of our church.
The 1% Plan supports theological education across the PC(USA)
The only way to provide financial support for all of your PC(USA) seminaries and students is by contributing to the 1% Plan. The plan is intended to support all of our schools, therefore, you are asked not to designate your commitment. However, this plan does give your congregation the opportunity to support particular schools and seminary students over and above your budget commitment to the Theological Education Fund (1% Plan).
Begin budgeting your congregation's contribution today
Start today! Include the Theological Education Fund in your congregation's annual budget planning process. But don't wait until next year to give. Make a symbolic gift now and join the thousands of congregations already committed to preparing future leaders for the church of Jesus Christ through the Theological Education Fund (1% Plan).
Send your contribution with checks and accompanying paperwork clearly marked: Theological Education Fund, account #TE999999 through the regular channel used by your church when sending funds for General Assembly causes.
Alternately, you may also send your contribution directly to:
Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)
Theological Education Fund
P.O. Box 643700
Pittsburgh, PA 15264-3700
COTE implements a funding formula for 11 seminaries
The Committee on Theological Education (COTE), with 13 members elected by the General Assembly plus a representative from each seminary, oversees the distribution of the TEF (1% Plan) money and makes the allocations annually. Eleven seminaries receive funding according to a formula agreed upon by COTE. The formula provides each school with a fair share of the funds, taking into consideration such factors as numbers of degrees granted, the number of Presbyterian students and other special needs.
The Office of Theological Education, an office of the General Assembly Mission Council, manages the promotion and fair distribution of the Theological Education Fund monies.