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VTS Offices Remain Closed Through May 15


Media Contact: Curtis Prather
Tel: (703) 461-1782
Email: cprather@vts.edu

ALEXANDRIA,VA – Virginia Theological Seminary (VTS) announced today that we are suspending all in-person classroom teaching on the campus, and require remote working, save for essential services, through Friday, May 15, 2020. 

"It is part of our civic responsibility to slow down the spread of this virus." said the Very Rev. Ian S. Markham, Ph.D, dean and president. "When we promise to 'serve Christ in all persons,' we have an obligation to do our small part in keeping people well."

In reaching this decision, the Seminary consulted closely with the Alexandria Health Department, sister institutions in the Washington Theological Consortium, and guidance from the CDC.

Effective through Friday, May 15, 2020:
  • All administrative offices will remain closed.
  • The Butterfly House (on-site childcare) remains closed.
  • The Bishop Payne Library will provide online and digital services for faculty and students.
  • 1823 and The Flamingo remain closed.
  • Chapel services will be online.
  • Classes will continue online.
In addition, all events on campus to the end of the semester will be canceled, postponed, or, like our annual commemoration of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s martyrdom in early April, adjusted to an online format. For additional online opportunities, please visit Lifelong Learning at VTS.

Virginia Theological Seminary is finding grace in this difficult moment. Together, faculty and students are working on ways to address the challenges around redesigning worship and Commencement. Everyone is practicing "safe distancing." This week, Dean Markham shared a beautiful video of students, faculty, and staff performing a community sing in support of those on self-quarantine.

One student, diagnosed with COVID-19 over a week ago, is in full recovery. Currently, VTS can report that we have 25 people remaining on self-quarantine with no new cases.

"Thanks to the discipline and civic responsibility of the VTS community, we have helped prevent the multiplication of persons who would have contracted the virus," said Markham.

For the latest information, please visit www.vts.edu/coronavirus.


Founded in 1823 as a beacon of hope in a country new and finding its way, Virginia Theological Seminary is the flagship Seminary of the Episcopal Church. One of our first benefactors was Francis Scott Key, whose poem provides the text for our national anthem. In the 191 years since being established, VTS has led the way in forming leaders of the Episcopal Church, including: the Most Rev. John E. Hines (VTS 1933, D.D. 1946), former presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church; the Rt. Rev. John T. Walker (VTS 1954, D.D. 1978), the first African-American bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Washington; and theologian, author and lay preacher Ms. Verna J. Dozier (VTS D.D. 1978). Serving the worldwide Anglican Communion, Virginia Theological Seminary educates approximately 25% of those being ordained who received residential theological education. Visit us online at www.vts.edu.
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