TWO 19th century institutions located on opposite sides ‘of the pond’ have signed an historic agreement.
Gladstone’s Library in Hawarden, North Wales and Virginia Theological Seminary (VTS) in Alexandria VA, USA signed the agreement, which will last for five years, on September 8.
VTS will send one member of their faculty to Gladstone’s Library each year to use its world-renowned resources and to teach a course as part of the Library’s programme.
They will also commit to promoting the Library and raising its profile in the USA.
Founded in 1823, VTS is the flagship and largest Seminary of the Episcopal Church in the USA and serves the worldwide Anglican Communion.
Virginia Theological Seminary educates approximately 25 per cent of Anglicans/Episcopalians being ordained in the USA.
The agreement between the two institutions, which comes on top of a generous donation from the Seminary to Gladstone’s Library, has been welcomed by Peter Francis Warden at Gladstone’s Library. “This reciprocal agreement and a new period of mutual support and friendship between Gladstone’s Library and Virginia Theological Seminary will be of great benefit to both institutions,” said Peter.
Gladstone’s Library which was founded in 1894 is the UK’s only Prime Ministerial library and is unique in being a residential library with 26 bedrooms. Its collections which number over 250,000 items, focus especially on religion, literary culture, and history/politics.
“This important agreement will ensure that the Seminary continues to produce publications that serve both the Church and the academic guild,” said Ian Markham, Dean and President of VTS. Our service to the church is a matter of creating a learned clergy of men and women who are committed to the life of the mind. We are blessed with a distinguished and widely published Faculty, who all have substantial research projects.”
The Agreement reads, in part: Two historical institutions committed to learning and reflection on faith agree to provide opportunities for scholars to research, rest, and pray. We believe that we need thoughtful Christians who are ready and willing to engage constructively with the predicaments and possibilities of modernity. We trust that this partnership will create such Christian leaders.