TSM expands campus, purchases local church

H Lawrence Thompson III

Ambridge, PA, November 2019 – In the small town of Ambridge, PA, a renewal is taking place.  Storefronts are being updated, old buildings are being refurbished to house new tenants, and new sidewalks have been poured.  Trinity School for Ministry has a desire to support this renewal in a way that is helpful to the town and also helps to build community.  To that end, Trinity School for Ministry is thrilled to announce that we have just purchased the Presbyterian Church of Ambridge, located just a few blocks from Trinity’s campus.  “When the pastor from the church approached me to inquire whether we would be interested in buying the church, I knew that I had to explore this option,” stated the Very Rev. Dr. Henry L. Thompson, III (Laurie), Dean and President of Trinity School for Ministry.  “We knew we needed a larger chapel/meeting space and we had been praying that God would help us to discern whether or not to build a brand new building,” Thompson added. “We received our answer— not surprisingly, this existing church met every one of my criteria that I had identified for a new building. God has given us such a tremendous gift.”

Opened in 1976, Trinity has a long history of working with the Ambridge and surrounding communities.  Of interest is the fact that Trinity’s current chapel was a Presbyterian church, and when Trinity purchased it, half of the congregation began attending down the street at the church that was just purchased.  “We feel like God has taken us full circle,” said Thompson, “and once again we are able to put new life into an older building.”

The recently purchased building will allow Trinity to move forward into the future as its residential student population continues to grow and its partnerships reach even further globally.  Trinity now has the ability to:

  • welcome local churches and neighborhood groups who need a larger space for events;
  • offer a setting for Christian conferences and education;
  • create a better setting in which to train Trinity’s students to preach;
  • provide additional space for Trinity’s students to relax and socialize with each other
  • film worship services so that we may send the recordings to students in other countries;
  • reach out and serve the wider needs of the Ambridge community.

Trinity is working on a number of design ideas to provide space for worship, events, student gatherings, and training.  “The church is structurally sound and in very good condition. Whereas we only have room to seat a little over 100 in our current chapel, and just a bit more than that in our Commons Hall, this church will allow us to seat between 450-600 people.  We are very excited to be working to make some changes that will maximize the full potential of the space,” said Thompson.

Trinity School for Ministry is an evangelical seminary in the Anglican tradition. In this fractured world, we desire to be a global center for Christian formation, producing outstanding leaders who can plant, renew, and grow churches that make disciples of Jesus Christ.