Ten years ago this week, more than 1,000 guests attended the official dedication of George W. Truett Seminary’s new Baugh-Reynolds Campus. The new facility brought pastoral education back to the main Baylor campus for the first time since 1910, when Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary (which began as Baylor Theological Seminary) left Waco for Fort Worth.
From its opening in the fall of 1994 until January 2002, Truett Seminary was graciously housed by First Baptist Church of Waco, continuing that congregation’s long affiliation with Baylor. But the new facility allowed students and professors to settle into a home of their own. The campus was named for John and Eula Mae Baugh, who provided a lead gift for construction, and former Baylor President Herbert Reynolds, MS ’58, PhD ’61, who was at the helm of the university when the seminary was established.
The seminary itself is named for George W. Truett, AB 1897, whom Reynolds at the dedication called “the greatest Baptist statesman of the 20th century.” After helping raise significant funding that helped save Baylor from financial ruin in the 1890s, Truett graduated from Baylor in 1897. That fall, he was named pastor of First Baptist Church, Dallas, a role he would hold until his death in 1944, almost 50 years later.
Today, Truett is a thriving Baptist seminary of approximately 350 students, its education focused on small, seminar-style classes. Over the past 17 years, Truett has graduated more than 900 men and women who now serve in ministry positions across 40 states and 19 countries. Its home is easily visible to motorists on the nearby interstate, illustrating Baylor’s commitment to educating the spiritual leaders of tomorrow.
Sic ’em, Truett Seminary!