bool(true) Barrytown Campus Update

Bridging Religious and Cultural Divides

barrytown campus main chapel exterior thumbLet me assure you that, contrary to a rumor being circulated, Barrytown campus has NOT BEEN SOLD. However, it is clear that the current status of the Barrytown campus is not sustainable. The future of the campus has been under study for 15 years in an effort to explore options for long-term sustainability.

It costs a huge amount of money to maintain buildings and grounds.... more than $600,000 per year. Additional money has also been needed for capital improvements required by New York State. These costs fall fully on the shoulders of the larger movement. Income from conferences and rents covers only a small portion of the expenses to maintain the facility.

We have kept in mind that the heart of our Founders is to serve the broader society. In fact, Father Moon stated, “Barrytown is for the benefit of all … Eventually, I would like to open all our major facilities like Belvedere and Barrytown to the public and let the public be proud of our establishments as their own.” (“Living Sacrifice,” May 5, 1977 and “Our Pride,” June 5, 1977)  

For more than a decade, the leaders of UTS have been in discussions with various groups about how to ensure that the property is protected and sustained for generations to come. Ten years ago, Father Moon himself approved one proposal. However, because the interested party would not agree to our terms, the UTS Board declined the offer.

We have not been idle. We have been actively searching for partners who are interested in utilizing or developing the property. Ideally, that will be a person or organization with a vision that resonates with that of our Founders. Some investors have shown interest in the property and have presented their ideas. However, at present, there is nothing on the horizon that fulfills our desire that the property will continue to serve the founding vision.

For UTS, 4 West 43rd Street in NYC is the center of education, providing all of the Masters level programs. No students reside or study at the Barrytown campus. The Doctor of Ministry intensives are held at Barrytown for a total of four weeks per year. The UTS locations in Manhattan and Maryland together with online learning suffice for our current accredited programs.

The 40th Commencement Ceremony will be held at Barrytown in the recently renovated chapel at 2:00 pm on Saturday, May 28. Everyone is invited to attend.

On another note, the Generation Peace Academy will have its graduation ceremony at Barrytown on June 18. Blessed Culture and Sports Festival will take place from August 10 through 14. Hopefully, other events will also be held this year, like the workshop for FFWPU District 2 members that took place last weekend.  

This is a serious matter which needs to be dealt with prayerfully and in a timely manner. We welcome thoughtful feedback that is not anonymous via h.spurgin@uts.edu.

I will continue to report developments affecting UTS, as they occur.

Sincerely,
 
Hugh Spurgin Ph.D.
President, Unification Theological Seminary

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