Missio has reason to celebrate—and celebrate all year long. As of 2021, MISSIO is celebrating 50 years of faithful ministry to the Philadelphia region (1971-2021). The Holy Spirit is alive and well and will not be quarantined.

Our celebration will look back but also look forward. We will recognize the foundation that was laid by our two founders: Dr. Allan MacRae and Dr. Jack Murray—one was a scholar and the other an evangelist.  Together they embodied a spirit that joined serious Bible study a with a missionary’s zeal to share the Gospel—but always with a gracious and respectful understanding of the cultural context—”theirs was a Gospel with legs.”

One of the signs of a healthy organization is growth. I am not talking about numerical growth (although that has happened). I am talking about spiritual growth.  We have grown in our self-understanding; we have grown in our understanding of Scripture; and we have grown in compassion, grace, and love of God and neighbor. We have recommitted ourselves to metro Philadelphia—urban and suburban.

Nothing demonstrates that growth better than the missional turn nearly 20 years ago. Dr. David Dunbar led what was then Biblical Seminary to become one of the first seminaries in the US to embrace a full throttled missional theology. It has been my privilege to continue the missional emphasis by changing our name to reflect better our missional commitment and then to move into the city to live out God’s mission. We have tried our best to be strategic, wise, and faithful to the original vision of MacRae and Murray as we seek to serve Philadelphia and the North East corridor from New York City to Washington DC. It has been quite a ride even if it has been bumpy at times. Today, we still stand on the shoulders of remarkable leaders. And we intend to celebrate.

Join me in celebrating God’s blessings upon MISSIO Seminary for the last 50 years with a view to how He will bless in the next 50 years.

Frank A. James III, DPhil, PhD
President and Professor of Historical Theology
Missio Seminary

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