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Mission of Seminary of the Southwest

Seminary of the Southwest forms men and women for the service of Christ in lay or ordained ministry within the church and the larger society.


Southwest’s vision is to be a community for formation and leadership within the church supported by a strength of program, endowment, and environment that assures excellence in theological and pastoral education .

Core Values

Our core values describe what we stand for and believe in.

  • Hospitality: creating a common life that welcomes difference and ensures that all voices are heard
  • Mutuality: nurturing a collaborative environment that promotes mutual inquiry and accountability
  • Respect: cultivating the virtues of patience, justice, and charity, so as to affirm the dignity of every member of the community
  • Rootedness: embodying the richness of the Episcopal and Anglican traditions in particular contexts, especially that of the American Southwest and its Hispanic cultures
  • Celebration: glorifying and enjoying God in worship, prayer, study, service, and fellowship, so as to create a community of gratitude and gift
  • Conversation: listening to and critically engaging a variety of cultural and religious voices in order to commend the Christian tradition and discover fresh wisdom     

SSW Vision for the Parish Fellowships

The Seminary of the Southwest has been focusing on leadership development for several years as a part of its core curriculum and focus.  The Vision for the Parish Fellowships promoted by its Board and has developed through the efforts of Bishop Claude E. Payne who served as Chair of the Seminary’s Board during his tenure as Episcopal Bishop of Texas.  The vision is to equip young adults for Christian leadership, whether that ministry unfolds in a lay or ordained capacity.

Through immersion in vibrant, resource size congregations, the Parish Fellowships give young adults a place to grow in their faith, to serve in response to their faith and to discern where their spiritual gifts can best be utilized for their pilgrimage through life.  Whether that choice leads to seminary and ordination, or simply equips them for a deeper and broader life of lay Christian leadership, the nine months of in-depth leadership development is a phenomenal opportunity for any who pursue it.