Grace School of Theology had its beginnings in early 2002 when a pastor and lay persons in the Houston area committed themselves to realizing their vision of a local evangelical Christian institution emphasizing free grace. At the encouragement and advice of Dr. Charles Ryrie, Grace School of Theology began as Houston Theological Seminary as the result of the planning and visionary work of seven men who constituted the initial Board of Trustees: Dr. Dave Anderson, Dr. Glenn Darby, Mr. Larry Allbritton, Mr. Mark Rae, Mr. Jeffe Ready, Mr. Bill Diamond, and Mr. Bob Winslow. Of the original seven Trustees, Dr. Dave Anderson now serves as the President of Grace and a member of the Board and Dr. Glenn Darby is Chairman of the current Board of Trustees.
Grace School of Theology is a work of God’s grace. God placed the burden for this educational ministry upon the heart of Dr. Dave Anderson who, for eighteen (18) years, served as Senior Pastor of Faith Bible Church of The Woodlands, Texas. The discussions between Drs. Anderson and Darby with the full Board of Trustees led to the beginning of Houston Theological Seminary. The first seminary classes were held in Faith Bible Church of The Woodlands, Texas, and Cypress Bible Church of Cypress, Texas.
Houston Theological Seminary received its certificate of incorporation from the State of Texas effective May 29, 2001. The first students began classes in the fall of 2002. After Texas enacted a state law prohiting the use of the term “seminary” in an institution’s title without state approval, the name Houston Theological Seminary was changed to Grace School of Theology in a Certificate of Amendment issued by the State of Texas in March 2003. The Texas Supreme Court overruled this unconstitutional law in the fall of 2007, but the seminary elected to retain its current name.
Grace is strategically located in the Houston, Texas, metropolitan area with its administrative offices in The Woodlands, Texas, and its primary classrooms, academic/faculty offices, and Library located in the southwest section of Houston on and near the College of Biblical Studies campus. In June 2010, with the demands of a rigorous graduate curriculum and a growing student body, Grace School of Theology entered into a joint Library Agreement with the College of Biblical Studies of Houston, Texas. In the agreement, both parties are to share the extensive and modern Library facilities including all systems, collection, equipment, and staff.
As Grace has continued to grow, teaching sites have been requested and developed in areas near Houston (Beaumont), San Antonio, and as far away as Midland where much support and encouragement from Christian leaders has developed. From the first few students to our current first graduates, God has brought us quality individuals who are serious about the study of the Word of God. The students come from many backgrounds, some with years of experience and some as recent Bible college graduates. Many are current church staff members serving as pastors, youth pastors, and Christian educators. Some are businessmen and laypersons interested in and challenged to utilize their ministry gifts in service for Christ.
We look forward to many more years of equipping each student to minister in a real world to real people with the truth of free grace salvation. This is the purpose, the beginning, and the challenge of Grace School of Theology.