About Redeemer

A Brief History

Redeemer Theological Seminary was an accredited, Reformed seminary in Dallas, Texas. It began as an extension site of Westminster Theological Seminary in 1993. By 1999, the site had officially become the Dallas campus of Westminster, graduating its first M.Div student in 2003. In 2008 WTS – Dallas was launched by its parent school and became an independent institution, Redeemer Theological Seminary. Its inaugural convocation took place in February, 2009 at Park Cities Presbyterian Church and was delivered by Dr. Timothy Keller.[1] Westminster students were still able to graduate at Redeemer’s site through the 2011-2012 academic year, though trained by Redeemer faculty. May 2011 saw the first class of Redeemer graduates and May 2012 was the first class of graduating Redeemer M.Div students.

Upon its formation, Redeemer opened a campus in Austin, Texas and an extension of that campus in Houston, Texas. Due to its history as WTS – Dallas, Redeemer was swiftly granted Associate Member status from the accreditation commission The Association of Theological Schools in June 2010. Redeemer received full accreditation from ATS in September 2013.[2] This accreditation extended to both its Dallas and Austin campuses, the latter of which at this point had an additional San Antonio, Texas extension.

In 2014, the Missional Training Center in Phoenix, Arizona became a partner institution of Redeemer. The MTC had a degree with courses that were accredited through Redeemer, and in June 2016 ATS approved MTC as a fully accredited extension site of Redeemer offering an accredited Master of Arts in Missional Theology.[3] In October 2016 Redeemer’s Board of Trustees reached an agreement with Reformed Theological Seminary to cease operations at the end of 2016 and transfer assets and students to RTS while becoming RTS – Dallas.[4] The MTC subsequently shifted their affiliation and accreditation to Covenant Theological Seminary (2017-2023), and then Calvin Theological Seminary (2024-).

Partners and Initiatives

Redeemer Center for Worship and Music. In 2012 Redeemer began a Center for Worship and Music. The RCWM was directed by Dr. Hannah Clarke, and hosted conference and seminars on the subject of worship and music. In addition to training students, these had the goal of edifying the people in the churches around Redeemer. The RCWM also provided classes for Redeemer students, typically taught by Dr. Clarke, and oversaw Redeemer’s M.A.R. in Worship and Music from 2014-2016. The records of the RCWM are well preserved online.[5]

The Christian Counseling and Education Foundation. CCEF faculty were approved adjunct professors of Redeemer. Redeemer never offered a counseling-specific degree or program, but many students at the seminary were interested in counseling. Courses through CCEF’s School of Biblical Counseling were offered as electives each year to Redeemer students to complete online. Redeemer regularly sent a contingent of students to the annual CCEF conference.

The Southwest Church Planting Network. This church planting network is a sub-committee of five PCA presbyteries covering the states of Arizona, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas. The Southwest Church Planting Network shared office space with Redeemer’s Dallas campus from 2009-2016. The objective was to recruit Redeemer students for church planting and to ensure church planting culture was part of the fabric of Redeemer’s education.

Austin, Houston, and San Antonio. Redeemer’s Austin campus began as an extension campus and became a fully accredited campus in its own right. All three of these locations were hosted at PCA congregations: Redeemer Presbyterian Church (Austin; pastored at the time by David Cassidy), Christ the King Presbyterian Church (Houston; pastored at the time by Clay Holland, currently pastored by Redeemer M.Div graduate John Trapp), and Redeemer Presbyterian Church (San Antonio; pastored at the time by Tom Gibbs, now the President of Covenant Theological Seminary). These churches represent the significant investment across Texas that many churches made to the success of Redeemer. These sites were started in order to better serve the needs of the churches in these cities far-flung across the state.

Anglican and Baptist Studies. While primarily serving Presbyterian and Reformed churches, Redeemer also had a number of students from Acts 29, Anglican, and Baptist backgrounds. To better serve these churches, Redeemer hired Rev. Aaron Jeffrey to oversee Anglican studies at the seminary. An academic certificate was developed to that end, which was approved by several dioceses in the ACNA. Redeemer students were regular participants at the Cranmer Institute of the Episcopal Dioceses of Dallas, which was under the supervision of Dr. Christopher Seitz. Dr. Stephen Yuille, a long-time Redeemer adjunct, became the director of Redeemer’s Baptist studies and oversaw a certificate in that subject.

Missional Training Center. The Surge Network is made of up pastors in Phoenix, Arizona with a focus on fellowship, training, and missional engagement. They began the Missional Training Center, which provides theological education in a “missional key” to churches around Phoenix. The MTC is under the leadership of Dr. Mike Goheen. The MTC partnered with Redeemer and received official accreditation from ATS, while Redeemer received an infusion of missional theology through Dr. Goheen as a regular adjunct professor.

[1] https://web.archive.org/web/20100607134056/http://www.wts.edu/stayinformed/view.html?id=288; https://web.archive.org/web/20170301190307/http://theaquilareport.com/westminster-seminary-in-texas-becomes-redeemer-seminary-in-dallas/

[2] https://web.archive.org/web/20160322205702/http://theaquilareport.com/redeemer-theological-seminary-dallas-granted-accreditation-by-the-association-of-theological-schools/

[3] https://web.archive.org/web/20200610181857/http://missional-training.squarespace.com/who-we-are

[4] https://web.archive.org/web/20170925180605/http://www.redeemer.edu/new-blog-1/2016/10/15/reformed-theological-seminary-to-continue-redeemer-legacy

[5] https://web.archive.org/web/20150502002422/http://www.redeemer.edu/redeemer-center-for-worship-and-music/