Once each year Central Seminary uses In the Nick of Time to make an appeal. The reason is unique to our situation in Minnesota: the organization GiveMN features an annual giving event for all charitable organizations called Give to the Max. Central Seminary began to take advantage of this fundraiser about ten years ago. It has grown every year, and not just for Central Seminary.

Originally Give to the Max was held on a single day. Within a few years, the response was so overwhelming that it now has been expanded to half a month: November 1-15. You can give online at any time, mail your gift directly to Central Seminary, or call the seminary office and use your credit card to give. Only the online giving counts toward the official GiveMN total, but all giving counts toward our in-house, unofficial total. And that number is important. Why?

Central Seminary has generous friends who love to encourage others to give. This year two of our friends have offered a total of $50,000 in matching gifts. These donors are willing to double every dollar that comes in for the Give to the Max event, up to $50,000. In other words, if the rest of us can pool our efforts to give $50,000, the total gift to Central Seminary will be $100,000!

For some schools, that figure is peanuts. At Harvard or Yale it’s hardly a faculty lunch. But for Central Seminary, $100,000 is a really big deal. It goes a long way toward educating the next generation of pastors and missionaries for the church and for the gospel.

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This is an exciting year at Central Seminary. To begin with, it’s a year of growth. Our student population is up 32% and class registration is up nearly 43%. In an era when small colleges and seminaries of all kinds are struggling to hold their own, we are amazed at God’s goodness to us.

This is an exciting year because our academic credibility is better than ever. In June we achieved full membership status with the Association of Theological Schools, the premier accrediting agency for seminaries in North America. In the meanwhile, our graduates are achieving recognition for their contributions to the academy. For example, Pastor Richard Winston’s dissertation will be issued by P&R Publishing, a top academic publisher.

This is an exciting year because of our distance education program as students participate in our classes from anywhere in the world via the Zoom conferencing platform. The Lord has provided us with a true global outreach. We no longer need to establish campuses in foreign countries — people in those countries use their computers to participate directly in our classrooms.

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When you give to Central Seminary, you are investing in the ministries of students like Luke Tanis who came to us from Wisconsin, following brothers Micah and Marc. He graduated last May with his M.Div., and he and his wife Anna are now missionary appointees to Malta.

While our students must pay tuition, we do our best to keep that figure affordable. From a financial standpoint, we are one of the best bargains around, and we want to keep that up!  Seminary students can’t afford to accumulate debt, because they must graduate with the freedom to pastor small churches or serve as missionaries. The only way to keep our tuition low is for people like you to help us.

Our students only pay about 13% of the cost of their education. The rest of the cost is borne by people who are willing to invest, not only in their future ministries, but in the churches to which they will minister. Give to the Max is about churches and church members investing in the churches at home and around the world.

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We’re in the middle of Give to the Max right now. God is providing for us through this event. Would you consider becoming part of His provision?

You can give online at centralseminary.edu/give. Or you can give by mailing a check to Central Seminary (900 Forestview Ln N, Plymouth, MN 55441). Or you can call the seminary at 763-417-8250 to give by credit card. Your gifts are tax deductible.

Thank you for your friendship to Central Seminary. We are grateful for your prayers and for your financial help. Together we will equip the next generation of spiritual leaders for Christ-exalting, biblical ministry.

Awake, Our Souls

Isaac Watts (1674–1748)

Awake, our souls; away, our fears;
let every trembling thought be gone;
awake and run the heavenly race,
and put a cheerful courage on.

True, ‘tis a strait and thorny road,
and mortal spirits tire and faint;
but they forget the mighty God
that feeds the strength of every saint:

The mighty God, whose matchless power
is ever new and ever young,
and firm endures, while endless years
their everlasting circles run.

From thee, the overflowing spring,
our souls shall drink a fresh supply,
while such as trust their native strength
shall melt away, and droop, and die.

Swift as an eagle cuts the air,
we’ll mount aloft to thine abode;
on wings of love our souls shall fly,
nor tire amidst the heavenly road.