Regent College cultivates intelligent, vigorous, and joyful commitment to Jesus Christ, His Church, and His world.
Our hope for students is that through their time at Regent College their lives will become more fully integrated in Christ, so that their minds are filled with the truth of Christ, their imaginations captivated by the glory of Christ, and their characters formed according to the virtues of Christ.
We understand our educational mission to be what the New Testament calls paradosis (transmission), the handing on of living faith from one generation to another. In service of the Church we engage in graduate education through a kind of higher catechism or paideia (formation) that enables Christians to live more thoughtfully in varied vocations in the church and the world. By our formal classroom interaction, and by the culture we foster more generally at Regent College, we aim to help students to see all of life—and all aspects of our own lives—as spheres of God’s creative and redemptive work. As students leave Regent College, they should be prepared to pass this vision on to another generation.
Regent College does not aim principally to prepare students for thoughtful and virtuous citizenship, or to prepare them with the necessary skills to succeed in the workplace. These aims of higher education have their place at Regent only within the larger educational aim of preparing students to engage with their culture as thoughtful and prayerful Christians, sharing in Christ’s creative and redemptive mission to the world.
Since our ideals are as high as those of the apostle Paul who aimed to “present everyone perfect in Christ,” we will never be able either to see our educational mission fully achieved, nor will we ever be able to take much credit for the lives of our graduates when they demonstrate the sorts of qualities we desire for them. Yet we will rejoice with our graduates:
- when we see that they are passionately devoted to Christ, seeking after holiness, their lives shaped at the deepest level by prayer and Scripture, sharing in the suffering of Christ in order to bring life to others.
- when we see that their domestic and intimate lives are rich with family and friendship, celebration, service, and a joyful stewardship of the gifts of creation.
- when we see them participating fully in the life of the church, leading in ministries of evangelism, discipleship, teaching, worship, and healing, and exercising their gifts to further the work of the kingdom in all its forms.
- when we see that they are able to discern their work in the world as God’s work and to grasp how their Christian faith calls them to live creatively, thoughtfully and redemptively as artists, teachers, politicians and public servants; doctors, lawyers and business executives; engineers, carpenters and social workers; pastors, missionaries, and youth workers; and in every other worthy vocation, paid and unpaid.
Regent College, as a Christian academic community, takes relationships seriously, seeking to understand and live them in light of our biblical and theological commitments. We want to embrace the vast implications of being the “new humanity in Christ,” including how we treat gender, ethnic, racial, denominational and theological differences (cf. Galatians 3:28). Regent College welcomes students as varied as the whole people of God and seeks to create an environment in which all students feel safe to engage in courteous and respectful conversation in the pursuit of truth, as we seek to be formed and reformed by the Scriptures. The College welcomes and actively pursues qualified faculty reflective of this commitment.
1. A Graduate School of Christian Studies
Regent College is graduate school of Christian studies grounded in the love of God, the grace of Jesus Christ, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit. As a community of Christian scholars, we believe that rigorous academic study is an expression of our love for God and that it is vital to the health and mission of the church. We invite students into our community in the hope that our curriculum will establish them in the evangelical tradition, that it will deepen their faith and theological understanding, that it will introduce them to the discipline of Christian scholarship, and that it will prepare them for ministry both within and outside the institutional church. As a community we aim not simply to be informed by study but also to be transformed by the Holy Spirit through study, to the end that we might become more Christ-like and therefore more fully human. By being conformed to Christ—both to his life and to his suffering—we come to know and love our creator, the Triune God. Loving God, we desire also to love our neighbour and to learn to take our responsibilities in creation seriously. We are committed to a Christian vision of the human person, and this is reflected both in our curriculum and in our life together as students, faculty, staff, and governors. The Gospel of Jesus Christ, we believe, applies to every aspect and to every arena of life.
2. What We Believe: Historical Evangelicalism
As an evangelical institution, we confess a statement of faith modeled on that of the World Evangelical Fellowship, and we seek to stand robustly in the evangelical tradition. To this end we affirm the unique authority and trustworthiness of the Holy Scriptures, the supremacy of Christ, the necessity of personal repentance and faith, and the importance of bearing witness to Christ in word and deed. At the same time, we recognize the importance of holding and defending evangelical convictions graciously and reasonably. We are indebted to many of the insights of non-Christian scholarship. And we are profoundly grateful for how much we have been, and continue to be, blessed by the entire Christian tradition-Orthodox, Roman Catholic, and Protestant, worldwide. We endeavour also to model love for the church. We emphasize the importance for the Christian life of participation in the local church, while continually framing local participation within the context of the church universal.
3. Whom We Serve: The Church, the Marketplace and the Academy
Regent College was founded for the purpose of providing graduate level theological education to lay believers. Through our core curriculum, we continue to strive to provide a fully integrated theological education to students from all backgrounds, including those arriving from careers in the church, the marketplace and the academy. The College’s original vision has subsequently expanded to include educating and training pastors and other leaders in mission organizations and parachurch ministries. We also aim to prepare students for research and study at the doctoral level. In all our educational programs we seek first to reflect Christianly on the whole of human life and only secondarily do we focus on professional training.
4. What We Look Like: People and Space
Our faculty places high value on collegiality, and we have resisted growing so large that we must divide into departments. We believe that students and staff, as well as faculty, benefit from our intentionally small size. The College is also intentionally diverse. We value the energy and insight that come from bringing together women and men of different denominational traditions, from different ethnic and national backgrounds, and with very different vocational goals in view. We view the tensions such diversity creates as healthy and positive, for they provide us with the opportunity to learn courtesy and to experience something of the breadth and depth of God’s kingdom. Our diversity also encourages us to celebrate our oneness in Christ and to seek to manifest an allegiance to Christ that transcends our membership in and loyalty to human communities. The particular place and space that the College occupies is not incidental to the College’s mission. Our relatively small, light-filled facility fosters personal interaction and face-to-face learning. And our location on the campus of a major university encourages us to work and think in the larger context of contemporary society and culture.
Regent College’s core vision is not so much something that we have determined ourselves as it is the gift of God, entrusted to us for the sake of the church and the world. By God’s grace the College has made a significant difference in the lives of a great many women and men around the world. We are amazed by this and deeply grateful for it. And we look forward to serving all those who come to us, knowing that everything we undertake depends entirely upon God’s gracious provision. "May the favour of the Lord our God rest on us; establish the work of our hands for us—yes, establish the work of our hands." (Psalm 90: 17) .