Trinity’s roots can be traced to 1897, when the Swedish Evangelical Free Church began a ten-week Bible course in the basement of a Chicago church. The seminary was christened Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in 1963 and first began conferring the master of divinity in 1969. Kenneth Kantzer was the dean during those and several following years; his leadership was marked by positioning TEDS as a “love gift” to the local and global church, exemplifying a charitable yet unwavering approach to cultural engagement, and seeking out faculty engaged in the highest levels of critical scholarship. Several longtime faculty members widely known for their contributions to evangelical scholarship were brought to TEDS under Kantzer’s leadership.
Today, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School is part of the Trinity International University family of schools, which includes Trinity College, Trinity Law School (in Santa Ana, California), and two regional campuses (South Chicago and Florida). Our online programs bring educational opportunities anywhere an internet connection exists. Trinity’s efforts to engage culture are thus much more broad and varied than ever before, as our different schools engage various cultures and as TEDS faculty and initiatives continually take account of the changing nature of the global church. Our faculty members represent diverse cultural and ethnic backgrounds as well as diverse evangelical theological traditions; all are united by TEDS’ broadly evangelical ethos, centered on the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus and the inerrancy and authority of Scripture.
Though much has changed since 1963, one thing has not: Trinity Evangelical Divinity School continues to offer a transformative, gospel-centered education that prepares men and women for servant-leadership in a variety of vocations.