As the Unification Theological Seminary (UTS) reaches its 40th year, faculty and staff are preparing for an unprecedented, three-day event to mark this milestone. That includes graduation of undergraduate as well as graduate students, a reception, a thinkers’ conference for alumni on Sunday and Monday, a documentary slide show, and an open discussion with President Hugh Spurgin– all at the Barrytown campus where the Founder began the school in September 1975.
“Save the date and plan to be at Barrytown May 23, 24 and 25,” says Dr. Spurgin. “This graduation will be one you will remember. Walk Father’s trails again and join in a prayer for the saints who have walked that same path. Barrytown is a beautiful place in the springtime.”
Dr. Michael Balcomb, chair of the UTS Board of Trustees, will give the commencement address. Mr. Bill Gertz, a best-selling author and a longtime reporter for the Washington Times, will be awarded an honorary doctorate during graduation ceremony that will begin at 3:00 p.m. on Saturday, May 23rd. Following the graduation ceremonies, there will be a reception outdoors, according to the organizers.
Sunday and Monday (morning), May 24th and 25th will feature an alumni conference featuring sessions on such topics as “chaplaincy –a rewarding path?; governance of not-for-profits and faith communities; interreligious dialogue and interfaith peace-building; upgrading your diploma to an accredited MRE or M.Div; where our movement is, how we got here and where we are going?; sports for peace; saving America; principle education and poetry readings,” according to Robin Graham, UTS Director of Development. The UTS Alumni Conference is planning two slide shows. One of these is organized around photos of the different class years; the second focuses on the various missions of UTS alumni after graduation, including missions with CARP, CAUSA, educational missions in the former Soviet Union, the Pantanal in South America, Ocean Church and the Washington Times, among others, Graham has announced.
On Sunday late afternoon, alumni and friends will have an open-ended discussion with Dr. Spurgin on the future of UTS and of the Barrytown property. Spurgin (UTS 1977) has written previously that he is eager to listen to the alumni’s thoughts and proposals. “We can make a difference, so let us work together to save our alma mater. We welcome your ideas, plans, and investment in time, donations and most importantly your prayers.”