We are very excited to announce that Rev. Dr. Harry Wood will be the inaugural chairperson of the newly expanded Wesleyan Seminary Foundation. All of you know of his leadership as a General Superintendent and his long tenure as a beloved and effective district superintendent and a leading pastor.

What you may not know is that Dr. Wood has always been actively committed to the care and support of Wesleyan seminarians. Besides expressing this passion in his official capacities for years, he has worked behind the scenes reaching out to Wesleyan seminarians at our traditional seminary and non-traditional seminary partners.

Rev. Wood clearly understood that not only recruiting, but also retaining our ministry students for service in our church, is crucial. Jesus’ admonition to “pray for workers for the harvest” clearly reflected that the most valuable part of any organization is its people.

Recognizing this reality we have re-organized and expanded our traditional seminary foundation at Asbury Theological Seminary to include Wesley Seminary and, most importantly, all of our Wesleyan seminarians regardless of their location. To get a better sense of how this will be accomplished, see the Wesleyan Seminary Foundation Strategy below.

Our special and long-term relationship with Asbury Theological Seminary is still crucial. Rev. Dave Durst will be working with Dr. Wood as a campus director for the Wesleyan Seminary Foundation at Asbury Theological Seminary. Similarly with the emergence and popularity of Wesley Seminary at Indiana Wesleyan University, we will also have a campus director there. This role will be fulfilled by Joel Liechty from Education & Clergy Development, also a graduate of Wesley Seminary at Indiana Wesleyan University.

Rev. Wood’s agreement to use his gifts and experience to engage, support, and retain Wesleyan seminarians wherever they are is a wonderful development for our church. And his ministry will be a blessing to all of our seminarians across North America. As Dr. Wood takes on this new initiative from the field, I am sure you will celebrate with us and support him in this new and important ministry.

Wesleyan Seminary Foundation Strategy

PURPOSE: Identify and foster a network of Wesleyan seminary students across the North American General Conference to encourage, care for, and advise seminarians in their call and education/formation process to facilitate their well-being and long-term engagement with The Wesleyan Church.

Strategic Goals:

  • Identify Wesleyan seminary students across the North American General Conference.
  • Engage seminarians in dialogue about their call and direction in ministry.
  • Lead seminarians toward engagement with The Wesleyan Church via local churches, districts, and headquarters.
  • Provide a point of pastoral care and ministerial advice for Wesleyan students during their tenure at seminary.
  • Facilitate connections between seminarians and The Wesleyan Church, particularly for the purpose of finding full-time employment in Wesleyan churches after their graduation.
  • Facilitate camaraderie and fellowship amongst Wesleyan students and Wesleyan staff at seminaries.
  • Utilize a leadership team of faculty and students to help accomplish these outcomes.