Centers of Excellence
Trinity is home to the Henry Center for Theological Understanding, the Center for Bioethics & Human Dignity, the Paul G. Hiebert Center for World Christianity and Global Theology, and the Center for Transformational Churches. Additionally, Camp Timber-lee operates under Trinity’s organizational and administrative umbrella.
All centers hold events including debates, conferences, and lectures, covering a wide variety of topics and featuring renowned experts and theologians. Most of these events are open to the public – information is available on the events calendar.
The Paul G. Hiebert Center for World Christianity and Global Theology
Named after the late Paul G. Hiebert, who was an anthropologist and professor at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School from 1990–2007, The Paul G. Hiebert Center for World Christianity and Global Theology was launched in March 2017. The Center is directed by TEDS Dean Emeritus Tite Tiénou, Research Professor of Theology of Mission. Tiénou also holds the Tite Tiénou Chair of Global Theology and World Christianity.
The mission of the Hiebert Center is to promote strategic collaboration between North American and Majority World Christians for the advancement of the gospel and to facilitate the emergence of theological perspectives that are biblically faithful, contextually relevant, and reflect the global diversity of the body of Christ. Aligning with University’s mission to educate men and women to engage in God’s redemptive work in the world, The Paul G. Hiebert Center for World Christianity and Global Theology seeks to accomplish the following key objectives:
- Develop intercultural and international networks of collaboration for the advancement of the Gospel, focusing on, but not exclusive to, TEDS international alumni and students
- Provide research opportunities for “Majority World” theologians and other scholars who aim to study trends and patterns related to mission, theology, and the growth of the global church
- Assist members of TEDS learning community to develop a 21st century global awareness and theological reflections, whether their calling is to serve in North America or the Majority World
- Develop partnership networks with Diaspora congregations in North America and beyond, to study and develop theological, missiological and pastoral resources for these growing congregations
The Center’s leadership sees its role at Trinity as one of facilitation towards a deeper understanding of world Christianity and global theology for its faculty, staff and students. The Center’s ongoing efforts to promote the work of Majority World theologians and scholars focus on creating spaces for generative conversations. This is largely accomplished through the example of guest speakers and scholars that visit Trinity’s campus to present or participate in the Center’s annual lecture series given by a Majority World scholar, symposia, consultations with Diaspora churches, and the visiting scholar program.
The Center’s hope is also to facilitate reciprocity in Christian theologizing and relationships, bringing about a more complete picture of the nature of Christianity in the United States that includes Christians from the diaspora of Africa, Asia and Latin America, so that when people around the world think of American Christianity, they think of a Christianity that incudes these diverse pockets of faithful Christians.
Carl F.H. Henry Center for Theological Understanding (HCTU)
The Carl F. H. Henry Center for Theological Understanding provides a unique opportunity for ministers, professionals, and academics in various fields to work collaboratively with seminary faculty engaged in biblical and theological reflection. The goal of this partnership is to advance Christian wisdom in all areas of life and thought—in short, to enable people to apply the knowledge of God and themselves gleaned from Scripture in the rough and tumble of life. The Center seeks to embody the vision of Carl F. H. Henry (1913-2003), a long-time faculty member at Trinity, for Christian thinking that makes a difference in the academy, in our churches, and in the secular world. The work of the Center is thus aimed at promoting gospel-centered thinking and living with others—from a variety of ethnic and social backgrounds—for the glory of God, the good of His church, and the welfare of the world.
The Center for Bioethics & Human Dignity (CBHD)
The Center for Bioethics & Human Dignity is a bioethics research center at Trinity International University that explores the intersection of medicine, technology, and our individual and common humanity. Established in 1994, CBHD brings distinctly Christian reflection to bear on current and emerging bioethical challenges that is both academically rigorous and broadly accessible. Such issues include end-of-life concerns, euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide, infertility and reproductive technologies, genetic interventions, biotechnologies (e.g., stem cell research, cloning, synthetic biology), emerging technologies (e.g., nanotechnology, neuroscience, artificial intelligence, robotics), and disability ethics, among many other issues. Working within a Judeo-Christian Hippocratic framework, CBHD fosters rigorous research, theological and conceptual analysis, charitable critique, and thoughtful engagement, to bring clarity to these complex issues of our day.
In short, the Center articulates Christian bioethics within the academy and provides credible, current, and comprehensive resources from a distinctly Christian perspective to assist in making wise decisions for ethical dilemmas that arise in medicine, science, and technology.
In addition to its annual summer conference, the Center has hosted a number of consultations, and regional and international conferences, and has produced a wide range of print publications and electronic resources. As an early provider of online resources, CBHD’s websites host a spectrum of resources on a wide diversity of topics from introductory materials to scholarly resources for a global audience. As a leading voice in Christian bioethics, CBHD staff and fellows have appeared in a wide range of print, radio, and television media, provided congressional testimony, and are regular speakers at universities, conferences, and churches. In this regard, CBHD serves as a visible expression of TIU’s emphasis on cultural engagement.
- CBHD.org (CBHD’s flagship site, providing scholarly resources in Christian bioethics as well as updates on the Center’s latest work and initiatives.)
- EverydayBioethics.org (Accessible resources for pastors, church leaders, and everyday individuals looking for introductory resources.)
- Bioethics.com (Global news site, provides the latest updates in bioethics news, issues, and events.)
- 29th annual summer conference, Integrity and Conscience: Bioethics and the Professions, June 23-25, 2022
The Center for Transformational Churches
Founded in 2015 and emerging from Trinity International University’s long-standing educational commitment to vibrant and deep Christian discipleship, the Center for Transformational Churches was established to empower Christian leaders for fruitful work, gospel transformation, and cultural change.
Christ calls the church to be the primary vehicle for communicating the gospel and creating individual, communal, and cultural transformation. Every vocation matters to God and pastoral leaders are called to empower their congregations for fruitful mission in the world of work. The efforts of the Center for Transformational Churches support this calling and facilitate pastoral formation, leadership development, cultural engagement, and human flourishing. The Center's Resilience Project gathers pastoral couples for training and formation on the theme of resilience in ministry.
The Center also houses the national office of the Oikonomia Network (ON), a learning community that equips theological educators to connect biblical wisdom and sound theology with whole-life discipleship, fruitful work, economic wisdom, and human flourishing. The ON convenes Karam Forum, which gathers global theological educators for a fruitful time of insight, networking, and equipping; as well as webinars that explore how theological faculties and schools can live into a flourishing future. The ON also publishes the Economic Wisdom Project, a library of video and print resources for use in seminary classrooms and local churches.
For over 70 years, Camp Timber-lee has led the Midwest in providing incredible Christian camping experiences for youth. The 650-acre campus, located in Southeastern Wisconsin, is the perfect setting to learn about the outdoors, create significant memories, discover meaningful relationships and grow spiritually.
Approximately 20,000 guests are served annually through summer and winter youth camps, Outdoor Education experiences for public and private schools, and weekend retreat group rentals. In addition to the 120 summer staff hired each year, there are opportunities for participation in the Timber-lee gap year program for recent high school graduates, and a camp internship program for college graduates.
Timber-lee, like Trinity, shares close ties with the Evangelical Free Church of America as we strive to live out our mission of providing engaging communities where each young person encounters Christ through a dynamic camp experience.