Taking Theology Home: The Spiritually Formative Experiences of Seminary Spouses

Publication Date

Spring 2017

Document Type





The purpose of this paper is to explore the spiritually formative experiences of fifteen female seminary spouses who participated in a phenomenological research study. Graduate theological education is not limited to married, male students. Seminaries are diverse educational institutions that equip married and single students, as well as men and women from every country in the world for gospel ministry. Because of this broad population in theological education, the qualitative proposals in this essay are not generalizable to all schools, students, and settings equally, but the perspectives of these seminary spouses are useful in cultivating a robustly holistic education for students who are married during their academic pursuits. It is the intent here to explore how theology can crossover from the academy to the home so that it is experienced in marriage. The goal then is to equip students, professors, and administrators to actively nurture the faith formation of the second-person of the ministry dyad. In order for these stakeholders to understand how to nurture this faith formation of the seminary spouse, we must first hear and understand the experiences of these wives as they share their reflections on these formational years as a part of their husband’s education.