What is the Patterson Center for Global Theological Innovation?

Southwestern Seminary’s Patterson Center for Global Theological Innovation (GTI) exists to strengthen theological education around the world. This is accomplished through strategic partnerships with Baptist conventions and seminaries overseas.

Integral to this effort are Champion Churches—missionminded congregations that partner with an overseas seminary in order to meet that institution’s needs. While GTI handles the academic side of things, Champion Churches cover the practical—providing library and technological resources, teaching courses, funding students, etc.

What Does GTI Do?
  • Plant churches andevangelize
  • Distribute food for seminariesin areas of food crisis
  • Train professors
  • Share best practices among partner schools
  • Review curriculum
  • Curate theological libraries
  • Provide scholarships for faculty members to improvetheir training
  • Install and consult on new technology
  • Help schools launch online and extension education programs
  • Develop a global consortium of Baptist theological education
What Does a GTI Partnership Look Like?

Champion Churches are mission-minded Southern Baptist churches willing to engage in a five-year relationship with Southwestern and a Baptist seminary overseas. This collaboration involves ongoing leadership development and a project-based plan of ministry. It excludes things such as new construction, debt retirement and operational funds, focusing instead upon improving the seminary’s academic and practical programs and strengthening the relationship between the seminary and local Baptist churches. The ultimate goal of this partnership is to better equip our seminary partners in the task of preparing men and women to serve Christ through the local church in keeping with their individual ministry calling.

There is no standardized partnership agreement, as each cooperative effort is built around the needs of the individual seminary. Some of our most successful Champion Church efforts to date include activities ranging from sports evangelism to personal discipleship training and church planting, leadership development workshops, library expansion (both print and digital), and the acquisition and installation of computers for launching online learning. Many of these partnerships also involve scholarships for faculty training and development.