NTS Blogs

NTS Hosts 3rd Annual Preachers Conference and Celebrates 70 Years of Preparing Kingdom Leaders

Nazarene Theological Seminary hosted the annual Hugh C. Benner Preachers Conference September 29 and 30. This year’s conference, Local Flavor: Preaching in Context, featured seven preachers from a diverse set of local congregations across the U.S. 

 “Our preachers represent a wide range of settings, including a multi-campus church, a modern-day Mayberry, and a church in the heart of New York City,” said Jesse C. Middendorf, general superintendent emeritus and executive director of the NTS Center for Pastoral Leadership, which organizes the conference each year. “We invited them to preach a sermon as they would in their own local context and then reflect with our panelists and audience members on why that sermon was important for their congregation to hear. We were pleased to have more than 200 participants — from 24 states in the U.S. and one province in Canada — gathered in the J. B. Chapman Memorial Chapel here at NTS this week to hear Shawna Songer Gaines, Albert Hung, Javier and Annette Mondragon, Phil Stout, Althea Taylor, Daron Brown, and Brent Hofen. The preaching was powerful, the worship (led by Marvin Jones) was uplifting, and the fellowship was encouraging.” 

Following the conclusion of the first day’s conference sessions, a group of nearly 200 NTS students, staff, alumni, faculty, faculty emeriti, and friends gathered at Kansas City First Church of the Nazarene to celebrate “70 Years of Preparing Kingdom Leaders.” During the evening, the seminary’s first president, Hugh C. Benner, was remembered with a special video tribute, as well as by his son and daughter, Richard Benner and Janet Miller. There were also special presentations made to families of those who have recently endowed scholarships in memory of a loved one, including the families of Larry Lott and Paul Orjala; as well as special recognition and thanks given to the family of Marge Smith, who donated a painting in honor of Delbert Gish, former NTS professor and registrar. Ron Benefiel, the eighth president of the seminary, helped to celebrate the importance of “place,” noting the significance of the seminary’s consistent presence in the heart of Kansas City. 

Two members of the NTS first class were in attendance at the special dinner: James Holman and Reuben Welch, both of whom entered the seminary in 1945 and graduated in 1948. Steve Estep, president of the NTS Alumni Association, acknowledged all alumni in attendance, asking them to each stand decade by decade, beginning with the 40s and ending with members of the most recent graduating class. 

General Superintendent Jerry D. Porter read a letter from the Board of General Superintendents congratulating NTS President Carla Sunberg and the seminary.

“Dr. Sunberg, you and the NTS faculty and staff are part of a rich heritage. You stand on the shoulders of great leaders who have gone before you. Alumni, you are the torchbearers faithfully proclaiming the message entrusted to you. Students, you have answered God’s sacred call and are preparing yourselves to encounter a hurting world with the radical message of amazing grace. This celebration is not merely about the history of an institution, but about God’s faithfulness to and through His servants who have gone before you, and an affirmation that you may rely on this same God to see you through no matter what may come.” 

“This week has been a wonderful celebration of what God has done, is doing, and will continue to do at Nazarene Theological Seminary,” Sunberg said. “Many great things have happened over the course of the past 70 years and we look to the future with great anticipation as we sense that new winds are once again blowing in and among our community—great things are STILL happening at Nazarene Theological Seminary! Truly God has been faithful, and we give Him all the praise for what he continues to accomplish through our thousands of graduates around the world.”


NTS Partners with U.S. University Homecoming Events

As we do each year, we are once again partnering wtih our undergraduate schools in the U. S. at each of their homecoming events.  

Click here for a complete list of where we’ll be and when! 



Olivet Nazarene University and Nazarene Theological Seminary (NTS) are pleased to announce their formal partnership in the preparation of ministry leaders.

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NTS Fall 2015 Enrollment Increase

We are pleased to report that our 2015 Fall Enrollment is a 13% increase over last fall!  We are praising God for his work in our community and are grateful that as he calls women and men to ministry, that Nazarene Theological Seminary continues to be a place where Kingdom leaders prepare and are sent into the world!  



President Carla Sunberg invites you to journey to China with NTS (Beijing to Shanghai, a 13-day Cruise/tour with 11 Guided Tours) June 4-16, 2016.  

Click here to learn more, including how to reserve your spot TODAY!



On Tuesday night (Sept 29) of the Preachers Conference, NTS will host a special dinner to celebrate our 70th Anniversary, as well as alumni class reunions.  Click here for the details and to purchase your ticket!  


Honoring Dr. Larry Lott

NTS President Carla Sunberg and the community of NTS are saddened by the news of the passing of Dr. Larry Lott (NTS Class of 1993), pastor of Blue Hills Community Church of the Nazarene, who passed away July 13.

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First Cohort for NTS KC Spanish Language DMIN Established

In response to an invitation by the Hispanic Strategy Committee of the USA/Canada Region of the Church of the Nazarene, Nazarene Theological Seminary, together with the Office of Multicultural Ministries, has successfully established a Kansas City Spanish Doctor of Ministry (DMin) degree. Like its English counterpart, the emphasis on the degree will be on Wesleyan Pastoral Theology.

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Statement on the Charleston Shooting

The NTS community is grieved and saddened by the senseless shooting at Emmanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina. The pastor of the congregation, Rev. Pinckney was a DMin candidate at Wesley Seminary studying under Dr. Lovett Weems, former president of St. Paul School of Theology here in Kansas City. We pray for the family members of all the victims of this crime and for the entire Emmanuel AME congregation. May our sanctuaries be places of peace and reconciliation where the kingdom of God reigns.


In loving memory of Dr. Rob Staples

The NTS Community mourns the loss of Dr. Rob Staples, AB, BD, ThD, Professor of Theology at NTS from 1976-1996. Beginning in 1963, Dr. Staples spent well over three decades teaching at Southern Nazarene University and Nazarene Theological Seminary. Rob was a sage teacher-leader who provided wise counsel to the Church of the Nazarene in the midst of some of her most challenging periods. He often said that if you want to change the Church you must do it from the inside. And generations of students, pastors, missionaries and church leaders would testify that he embodied his theology in that very way. Rob loved Christ’s Church, and he loved the Church of the Nazarene. With unswerving conviction, he embodied in his faith and witness a robust theology of the Church of the Nazarene that is indissolubly connected to the universal Church.

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Community Prayer Breakfast

NTS will host a Community Prayers Breakfast on the National Day of Prayer, Thursday May 7 at 7:00am.  

Click here to read more…


Annual Report of the President

At the April 2015 meeting of the NTS Board of Trustees, President Sunberg delivered her annual report.  

Click here to read the report she delivered, which includes not only an overview of the past year, but also a look at Nazarene Theological Seminary, Preparing Kingdom Leaders for 70 Years. 


Preachers for #Preach2015 Announced

NTS is pleased to announce the lineup of preachers and panelists for its third annual Preachers Conference. The conference will be held this fall, September 29-30, and will once again take place on the Seminary’s main campus in Kansas City, MO.

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McPherson Appointed NTS Dean for Institutional Advancement

Nazarene Theological Seminary is pleased to announce Rev. Tim McPherson as the new Dean for Institutional Advancement. This is a new position for the Seminary.

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Seminary Celebration Banquet

On Saturday May 9, students, faculty, staff, friends and guests are invited to attend a special banquet to celebrate the completion of the academic year and to honor our graduates. ALL ARE WELCOME!

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In Memory of Dr. J. Dudley Powers

President Carla Sunberg, together with the NTS community, would like to extend condolences to the family of Joseph Dudley Powers, M. D., who passed away Sunday morning March 22. Dr. Powers was a physician, missionary, dedicated churchman, and a great supporter and friend of the Seminary.

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PLNU Becomes 5th Multi-Campus Site for NTS

NTS is pleased to announce that beginning this summer, courses for its Master of Divinity (MDiv) degree will begin being offered on the campus of Point Loma Nazarene University (PLNU) in San Diego, CA.

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Theology To Go - M15 Journal

NTS has been pleased to participate in a vital way in the M15 Conference.  We have offered over 10 workshop sessions, as well as provided the speaker for one of the conference’s mega‐seminars.
Many of our workshop presenters have shared with us articles, blog pieces and academic papers that they have written and we have put them together in a journal to share with those attending M15, as well as anyone who would like to read them.  This is “Theology To Go” if you will—theology to take with you into your week and into your ministry – whatever setting and context in which you find yourself. We pray these articles will challenge you to think deeply, pray fervently celebrating the past and being hopeful for the future of the Church.


NTS held its annual sending service January 27 for students preparing to serve through the 365M Program. Roger Hahn, Dean of the Faculty, shared a message of challenge and encouragement and General Superintendent Eugénio R. Duarte prayed for the students and their families.

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NTS @ M15

NTS is pleased to participate in the upcoming M15 Conference (Feb 9-11, 2015) in a variety of ways.  We will be hosting a dessert reception on Monday night, are co-sponsoring the Pre-Conference Workshop, and are involved a number of workshops in addition to having a booth in the exhibit hall.  Find out how you can join with us at M15 by clicking here.