Emmanuel College was founded in 1928 to prepare women and men for ministry in the United Church of Canada. Though Emmanuel is now in its eightieth year, the college possesses roots connected to the earliest endeavors of theological education in Ontario. When the United Church formed in 1925, it brought together Congregational, Methodist, and Presbyterian streams that had maintained separate histories in Toronto for well over a century. These streams worked together to form Emmanuel College in 1928.
Today, Emmanuel’s ecumenical faculty continues to represent the United Church’s progressive theological heritage well, one that combines a passion for the gospel with a significant engagement in efforts seeking social justice.
Emmanuel College represents a very interesting setting within the world of theological education. We are situated in the heart of one of the most international cities in North America. Toronto is well known for its vibrant urban life, its profound cultural diversity, and its ability to offer rich opportunities for interfaith dialogue and cooperation. Emmanuel College thrives in the middle of it all. With the Royal Ontario Museum and Queen’s Park just across the street, and subway access on the front walk, students and faculty can engage culture, quiet, or the chaos of the city whenever they want to do so.
There is a significant degree of complexity in Emmanuel’s relationships, but that complexity provides our students with significant ecumenical, intellectual, and cultural opportunities. As a founding member of the Toronto School of Theology, a federation of theological schools in Toronto, Emmanuel and its faculty offer advanced degree programs, like the ThM and ThD, in full cooperation with the faculty and students of six other accredited ATS seminaries in Toronto. As a college within Victoria University, Emmanuel enjoys the advantages of its formal association with the University of Toronto system, one of the top tier research universities in the world.
The challenges and possibilities associated with our complex context in theological education, combined with the hospitable and talented community of faculty, staff, and students already gathered at Emmanuel, can enrich the life of any person who seeks theological understanding, practical preparation for ministry, or analytical and advanced work that interprets and critiques the vital role religion plays across the world.
If you would like to have more information about Emmanuel, please do not hesitate to contact us. Meanwhile, take a look around. We hope you decide to stay awhile.
Mark G. Toulouse