The purpose of AGTS is to train men and women to fulfill the mission of the church as taught in Scripture—Shaping servant leaders with knowledge, skill and passion to revitalize the church and evangelize the world in the power of the Spirit.
As a graduate-level educational institution within the evangelical and Pentecostal tradition, the seminary affirms the Bible as God’s written Word, the inspired, infallible and authoritative rule for faith and conduct. Affiliated with The General Council of the AG, the seminary’s doctrinal commitment is found in the Statement of Fundamental Truths.
In order to accomplish its purpose, the seminary, as a center for instruction and spiritual formation, seeks to achieve the following objectives:
- To lead every student into a growing knowledge of God, based upon the redemptive work of Christ and the baptizing power of the Holy Spirit.
- To perpetuate the distinctive Pentecostal proclamation of the supernatural power of the Holy Spirit to restore the people of God to the New Testament model of vitality and witness.
- To create an environment in which men and women, who have been called and gifted for Christian service, may be nurtured as servant-leaders of sterling Christian character.
- To seek excellence in all of its programs, believing that a rigorous quest for truth, effectiveness and relevance should characterize theological reflection and professional training.
- To provide training in the professional skills necessary for the practice of ministry in a changing world, focusing on the preparation of pastors, missionaries, evangelists, military and institutional chaplains, teachers, counselors and others.
- To foster an evangelistic and missionary emphasis with a global and multi-cultural perspective in order to equip men and women to proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ at home and abroad.
- To encourage constructive engagement with society guided by the prophetic and redemptive words and deeds of Jesus Christ.
- To serve as a scholarly resource for the AG, Pentecostal-Charismatic communities worldwide and the larger body of Christ.
- To utilize technology and distance-education methodologies in the extension of its educational mission to Christian leaders unable to attend a resident campus.
Statement of Faith
The seminary adheres to the Statement of Fundamental Truths of the AG as indicated in Article V of the Constitution and Bylaws. In summary, we believe:
- the Bible is the inspired and only infallible and authoritative Word of God.
- there is one God, eternally existent in three persons: God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit.
- in the deity of our Lord Jesus Christ, in His virgin birth, in His sinless life, in His miracles, in His vicarious and atoning death, in His bodily resurrection, in His ascension to the right hand of the Father, in His personal future return to this earth in power and glory to rule a thousand years.
- in the Blessed Hope—the Rapture of the Church at Christ’s coming.
- the only means of being cleansed from sin is through repentance and faith in the precious blood of Christ.
- regeneration by the Holy Spirit is absolutely essential for personal salvation.
- the redemptive work of Christ on the cross provides healing of the human body in answer to believing prayer.
- the baptism in the Holy Spirit, according to Acts 2:4, is given to believers who ask for it.
- in the sanctifying power of the Holy Spirit by whose indwelling the Christian is enabled to live a holy life.
- in the resurrection of both the saved and the lost, the one to everlasting life and the other to everlasting damnation.
The AG grew out of the global revival at the turn of the twentieth century. Dedicated to the full gospel message, the Assemblies have grown to become a dynamic element of what is called the Third Force of Christianity—the Pentecostals.
The commitment to the Pentecostal dimension of Christianity is what distinguishes the AG from other groups within Evangelical Christianity. Since AGTS is the denominational seminary for the AG, the Pentecostal distinctives are central to each of its degrees and course offerings. Each member of the AGTS faculty and administration is full gospel in belief and practice. This background and heritage enables them to present biblical and theological truths, educational and missiological strategies and methods, and counseling principles within the context of the Pentecostal ministry. This Pentecostal hallmark of AGTS permeates all of its activities and programs.
History and Location
The concept of a graduate school of theology and missions was originally approved by The General Council in session at Portland, Oregon, August 1961. After lengthy and prayerful consideration, the General Presbytery, in August 1971, accepted a recommendation presented jointly by the Executive Presbytery and the Board of Education that the school be implemented. On May 18, 1972, the General Presbytery adopted a preliminary constitution and bylaws and authorized establishing the school at the International Headquarters in Springfield, Missouri. The school was incorporated in December 1972.
The Executive Presbytery was authorized to serve as the Board of Directors of the Assemblies of God Graduate School. Thomas F. Zimmerman, general superintendent, was elected to serve as president.
In August of 1984, by action of the Executive Presbytery and the General Presbytery, the school was renamed the Assemblies of God Theological Seminary. In December 1985, Dr. G. Raymond Carlson, general superintendent, was appointed president, a position he held until 1986. Dr. H. Glynn Hall served as president from 1987-90. Dr. Del Tarr served as president from June 1990-1999. On July 1, 1999, the Board of Directors appointed Dr. Byron D. Klaus, who currently serves as the seminary’s fifth president.
Originally located in the headquarters complex at The General Council of the AG, the seminary in August 1997 occupied a beautiful new facility on Glenstone Avenue adjacent to the Evangel University campus. Named in honor of Michael and Frances Cardone, Sr., the state-of-the-art building is entered via a spacious “Great Hall” which strategically accents the seminary’s mission with a bronze sculpture, “The Divine Servant,” and the official seal featuring the cross, the Bible and a dove to symbolize the Holy Spirit. The William J. Seymour Chapel, named for the African-American leader of the 1906 Azusa Street revival, includes beautiful stained glass windows depicting the great themes of Christian faith and Pentecostal leadership. The Khoo Kay Peng World Prayer Center incorporates a circular mural celebrating the Day of Pentecost.
The building also includes comfortable classrooms, faculty and administrative offices, the Cordas C. Burnett Library, a counseling center and a computer lab for student use. A commodious patio provides a delightful setting for relaxation, study and bag lunches on sunny days.
Springfield is an enjoyable location for pursuing graduate studies with its proximity to Ozark Mountain country. Also of great significance is the seminary’s nearness to the headquarters of The General Council of the AG. Students will have many opportunities to become familiar with the operations and resources of the church. They meet and mingle with church leaders, share ideas and build relationships for a lifetime of ministry.
The Cordas C. Burnett Library is the major information resource center of AGTS, incorporating both a physical resource center along with an increasingly vast array of digital resources that can be made available to students throughout the world. The two-level physical facility provides students with a pleasant, quiet atmosphere and a wealth of resources for the pursuit of serious graduate study. The library has a 135,000-volume capacity and its holdings currently consist of 101,093 bound volumes, 78,309 microforms, 5,538 audiovisuals and approximately 300 current periodical subscriptions. These include an extensive biblical, theological and missiological collection, augmented by the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center located at The Assemblies of God General Council headquarters in Springfield, as well as a collection of counseling resources.
The library is committed to providing quality service to AGTS students and other library patrons. Since 1978, the library has contracted for access to OCLC (Online Computer Library Center), a major world-wide computer-based cataloging bibliographic utility. As a member of the MOBIUS (Missouri Bibliographic Information User System) Consortium, the library currently utilizes the Millennium Library Automated System, a fully integrated library automated system complete with online catalog, circulation control, cataloging, acquisitions, serials control, media control and administration system.
The facility includes a computer center that provides access to productivity software, library resources and the Internet. The computer center is equipped with 16 personal computers, four laser printers, a color printer and a scanner. AGTS students may use the library’s copy machine to scan and save copies of documents, either using USB drives or their personal email accounts. The library has also installed multiple wireless access points, creating a wireless network accessible throughout the facilities, and has enabled wireless access to multiple computer center printers.
A number of online databases are available to AGTS students and faculty that significantly enhance the library’s collection, serving as periodical indexing tools while also providing full-text access to approximately 106,000 electronic resources, including journals and ebooks, from a wide range of academic disciplines. These databases include: full-text databases available through EBSCOhost (the ATLA Religion Database with ATLASerials, the American Psychological Association databases [PsycINFO, PscyARTICLES, and PscyBOOKS], Educational Resources Information Center – ERIC, Family and Society Studies Worldwide, Jewish Studies Source, Humanities International Complete and EBSCO databases such as Academic Search Premier); eHRAF (Electronic Human Relations Area Files for cross-cultural and intercultural studies); Pro Quest Dissertations & Theses and Psychology Journals; Gale Cengage’s Academic One File; Guide to Social Science & Religion in Periodical Literature; ATLA’s Research in Ministry (RIM) Online; Biblical Archaeology Society Online Archive; Encyclopedia Britannica Online; World Christian Database and ebrary’s Academic Complete ebook database. In addition, the library also has CD-ROM resources for student use that are available from some or all Student Computer Center machines: BibleWorks and the Historical Pentecostal Archives. The AGTS Library also provides students with online access to numerous periodical subscriptions.
The AGTS library can provide further access to print materials beyond those housed in the facility by virtue of the library’s status as one of 67 MOBIUS member institutions and its participation in MOBIUS’ Common Library Platform. The CLP creates a virtual collection of the more than 23 million items contained in the libraries of MOBIUS member institutions and creates a single user interface that allows faculty and students to request library materials using any personal computer in any location with access to the Internet. Requested materials are delivered within one or two days of being requested by the MOBIUS Delivery System. Local libraries that participate in the MOBIUS CLP include Baptist Bible College, Cottey College, Crowder College, Drury University, Forest Institute of Professional Psychology, Missouri Southern State University, Missouri State University, Ozarks Technical Community College and Southwest Baptist University. The AGTS library additionally holds membership in the Assemblies of God Library Consortium and the Southwest Missouri Academic Libraries Cooperative. By virtue of these memberships, AGTS students may also borrow books from Central Bible College, College of the Ozarks, Cox College of Nursing, Evangel University, Messenger College at Joplin and Ozark Christian College. The library also offers computer-assisted interlibrary loan services through OCLC that enable patrons to borrow books from other non-Consortium libraries throughout the country.
These resources enable AGTS students to deal effectively and efficiently with their information needs. As students grow in their experience and skill, becoming more advanced in the pursuit of these needs, the library can offer virtually unlimited access to resources through the library’s online catalog, MOBIUS, OCLC, the Internet and Interlibrary Loan.
Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center
For the study of the AG and Pentecostalism, AGTS students benefit from the museum and resources housed at the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center in the headquarters complex of the AG. The holdings focus on the history of the AG, but also include related materials on the Pentecostal, Charismatic and Evangelical traditions. The available correspondence, reports, published and unpublished histories, periodicals, news clips, personal papers, diaries, photographs, audiovisual materials (including oral histories), committee notes and minutes, memorabilia and other items make it one of the foremost archives for the study of Pentecostalism in North America. The center also publishes the quarterly Assemblies of God Heritage.
AGTS is accredited by The Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada, 10 Summit Park Drive, Pittsburgh, PA 15275-1103, phone (412) 788-6505, [www.ats.edu].
The following degree programs are approved by ATS:
ATS has also approved AGTS to offer a comprehensive distance education program:
Approved extension sites:*
*AGTS offers a limited number of courses at these locations. More about Continuing Education.
- Celebration, Florida
- Kirkland, Washington
- Minneapolis, Minnesota
- Phoenix, Arizona
- Phoenixville, Pennsylvania
- Sacramento, California
- Scotts Valley, California
The seminary is also accredited by The Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association, the regional accrediting agency of the North Central states, 30 North LaSalle Street, Suite 2400, Chicago, IL 60602-2504, phone (800) 621-7440, [www.ncahigherlearningcommission.org].
Statement of Educational Effectiveness
Our accrediting bodies require AGTS to publish a statement regarding our educational effectiveness. For example, The Commission on Accrediting for The Association of Theological Schools in the U.S. and Canada (ATS) has an Education Standard (ES6) which in part reads, “Assessment of student learning requires schools to be able to demonstrate the extent to which students have achieved the various goals of the degree programs they have completed as well as indicators of program effectiveness, such as the percentage of students who complete the program and the percentage of graduates who find placement appropriate to their vocational intention and theological education."
All degree programs at AGTS have evaluative processes to measure student learning which are assessed on an annual basis. Seventy percent of students who enroll in degree programs at AGTS graduate within five years of beginning their studies. Of graduates from the counseling program who take the National Counseling Exam, 96 percent pass on their first or second try.
Endorsements, Approvals and Memberships
Since its inception in 1972, AGTS has consistently demonstrated its concern for excellence and accountability as evidenced by the endorsement, approval or membership in the following agencies:
- Endorsed by The Alliance for Assemblies of God Higher Education
- Approved by the AG Chaplaincy Department. The seminary’s resident M.Div. degree program satisfies the academic requirements for the chaplaincy
- Listed in the United States Higher Education Directory
- Approved by the United States Department of Justice, Immigration and Naturalization Service to enroll nonimmigrant alien students
- Authorized by the Missouri State Department of Education to grant scholastic degrees
- Approved by the Veterans Administration for the education of veterans under the G.I. Bill of Rights
The seminary retains memberships in many organizations, including: American Theological Library Association, Missouri Library Network Corporation, American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers, the National Association of Evangelicals, the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators, NASFA, Missouri Library Association and the National Association of College and University Business Officers.
Compliance with Federal Laws and Regulations
The seminary employs, advances, admits and treats in its employment and educational programs, all persons without regard to their race, color, national or ethnic origin, sex, age, handicap or status as a veteran.
The administration has taken such steps as it deems reasonable to
- Comply with the nondiscriminatory requirements of the Internal Revenue Service, Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended by the Equal Employment Opportunity Act of 1972, Title IX of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.
- Publicize these nondiscriminatory policies of the seminary and to take such action as may be deemed necessary to comply with the requirements pertaining to such policies, including those specifically relating to record-keeping, facilities, programs and scholarships. The Board of Directors has directed the administration to take such reasonable steps as are necessary to preserve the federal tax exemption status of the institution and to meet the requirements of Titles VI, VII and IX, consistent with religious policies and philosophy of the seminary. The seminary complies with the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, Public Law 92-380. Inquiries regarding compliance with the above nondiscriminatory policies should be sent to the director of business.
To better facilitate its global and multicultural mission, the seminary maintains fraternal or exchange agreements with certain schools nationally and internationally, including but not limited to: Asia Pacific Theological Seminary, Baguio City, Philippines; Asia Theological Centre for Evangelism and Missions, Singapore; Continental Theological Seminary, Belgium; East Africa School of Theology, Nairobi, Kenya; Hansei University, Seoul, Korea; Harvest Bible College, Victoria, Australia; Latin American Bible Institute, San Antonio, Texas; Southern Asia Bible College, Bangalore, India; Southern Cross College, Sydney, Australia; TCA College (formerly Theological Centre for Asia), Singapore; West Africa Advanced School of Theology, Lome, Togo.
Wednesday, May 29, 2013 4:38 PM