Journal of Unification Studies Vol. 20, 2019 - Pages 1-56
On September 5, 2018, Middle States Association (MSA), the Seminary’s regional accreditor, approved Unification Theological Seminary’s request to relocate its main campus from Barrytown, New York to 4 West 43rd Street, New York City. On April 25, 2019, the New York State Board of Regents also authorized the move. The Seminary’s decision to relocate was the result of both positive and negative considerations. On the positive side, New York afforded more opportunities for UTS to realize its vision of “bridging religious and cultural divides.” On the negative side, UTS could no longer afford to maintain its 250-acre Hudson Valley campus and nearly 100 year-old, 120,000 sq. ft. main building. Weighing its options, the Board of Trustees elected to exchange idyllic Barrytown for the urban frontier of New York City.
To some extent the action was symbolic, since 4 West 43rd St. had been the main location of UTS instruction since 2009. Nevertheless, formal relocation of the main campus and possible sale of the property brought to a close a unique period in UTS history, the Barrytown years, which extended from the Seminary’s opening convocation on September 20, 1975.
During this period, the Seminary’s more than 1,500 graduates held numerous local, state, national and international leadership positions within the Unification movement. In addition, UTS gave birth to an array of ecumenical and interreligious organizations that extended the wider movement’s reach to scholars and religious leaders. The Seminary’s “academic ecumenism” generated dozens of books and extended the horizons of Unification theology. UTS and its allies also played an important role in eliminating coercive deprogramming and other threats to religious freedom. In gaining a New York State charter and regional accreditation, the Seminary helped the Unification tradition obtain broader recognition in the United States.
Depending on future developments, the Barrytown years may be regarded as a golden age or a wilderness sojourn. Either way, they afford perspective as UTS charts its ongoing course. This account organizes the Barrytown years around the period’s five presidential administrations, each of which had distinct emphases. These went forward under the leadership of Presidents David S.C. Kim (1975-1994); Theodore Shimmyo (1994-2000); Tyler Hendricks (2000-2010); Richard Panzer (2010-2015); and Hugh Spurgin (2015-2019). The account also includes an overview of the property’s pre-UTS history and concludes with consideration of the Seminary’s post-Barrytown prospects.
Barrytown had a colorful history prior to the Seminary opening its doors in 1975. The property’s pre-UTS history included three periods: a Barrytown estate period from the 1700s until 1928; a Christian Brothers period from 1928-1974; and a Unification Church “Barrytown Training” period from 1974-76.
The Barrytown Estate Period
In the 1700s, the Barrytown property was in the hands of the Livingston family. Robert Livingston (1746-1814), known as “The Chancellor,” was the most important of the original owners. As a U.S. “Founding Father,” he was one of the Committee of Five who drafted the Declaration of Independence along with Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, John Adams and Roger Sherman. In 1777, after plundering and burning Kingston, N.Y., British troops crossed the Hudson River and marched toward Claremont, north of Barrytown where they burned the Chancellor’s home. As the highest judicial officer in New York State, Robert Livingston administered the presidential oath of office to George Washington, utilizing the Livingston family bible at Washington’s first inauguration on April 30, 1789 in New York City, then the nation’s capital. Livingston served as U.S. Minister to France from 1801-1804 and helped negotiate the Louisiana Purchase. While in France, he met Robert Fulton, the inventor, and assisted him in developing the first commercially successful steamboat called the North River Steamboat, later renamed Clermont after Livingston’s rebuilt manor.
John R. Livingston (1755-1851) was Chancellor Livingston’s brother. He was a successful merchant and hired England’s foremost civil engineer, Sir Marc Brunel, to design a mansion at Lower Red Hook Landing, i.e., Barrytown. Brunel designed the country home in the style of the chateau de Beaumarchais in France. Livingston named the mansion Massena after one of Napoleon’s generals whose exploits he admired. Massena was considered to be one of the most beautiful homes in America. Another account referred to it as “more beautiful than any other along the river.”
John Aspinwall, owner of a large shipping company in New York City and a relative of the Roosevelts, purchased Massena in 1860. He was a founder of St. Stephen’s (later Bard) College. In the summer of 1868, 9-year-old Theodore Roosevelt came to Barrytown with his family and stayed for two months. There he started his life-long diaries and wrote of his interest in all types of small mammals, insects, snakes and birds, which he began to collect. They became part of his “Roosevelt Museum of Natural History.” The whole collection eventually was housed in the Museum of Natural History in New York City, which his father helped to found.
The original Massena mansion burned to the ground in 1885. John Aspinwall’s widow, Jane, commissioned William A. Potter, a New York City architect, to build her a house which “won’t burn down.” She then left for Europe where she stayed until it was finished. When she returned and saw the heavy brick and stone gothic building which replaced her beloved Massena House, she was appalled, but lived in it for the rest of her life. In 1911, the estate was sold to the Kips who in 1928 sold the property to the Christian Brothers. That concluded the property’s estate period.
The Christian Brothers Period
The American oil magnate, industrialist and philanthropist John D. Rockefeller, said to be the wealthiest American of all time, owned an estate on the highest point in the Pocantico Hills overlooking the Hudson River in Westchester County, near Tarrytown. The 3,410-acre estate was often described as “What God would have built if only he had the money.” Prior to Rockefeller completing his land purchase, the De La Salle Christian Brothers, a lay Roman Catholic teaching order, established a house of formation at Pocantico Hills. John Cardinal Farley, Archbishop of New York, dedicated St. Joseph Normal Institute on October 2, 1906. Magnificent stained-glass windows crafted in France which depicted the order’s history and New Testament themes were installed in 1909. Unfortunately, the institute impeded Rockefeller’s view of the Hudson River and he initiated negotiations to acquire the property which he did in 1928.
The Rockefellers paid $850,000 for the Christian Brothers’ institute and provided them with an additional gift of $1 million to move to Barrytown and build a school across from Massena mansion. Ninety-five local laborers worked for three years on the construction of the building, finishing in 1931. Shaped like an “H” turned on its side, the new 120,000 sq. ft. St. Joseph Normal Institute housed a Christian Brothers high school, a novitiate for those intending to enter the lay order, and a home for retired Brothers. From 1931, the Barrytown property became a site entirely devoted to Christian education in the Catholic tradition. Students engaged in a whole range of activities including sports, ice-skating on the pond, swimming in the Hudson, fishing, or hiking the 250 acres. One Brother later recalled, “It was a paradise. Good facilities, good teachers, good food.” However, there was little interaction with local townspeople aside from Christmas Eve services which the community was invited to attend.
In 1963, the Brothers completed a thorough renovation of the Main Chapel, bringing it into conformity with the latest liturgical and artistic standards. This included the replacement of chapel chandeliers and installation of a distinctive metal ring over the altar to define sacred space. However, their “Glory Years” came to an end in the aftermath of Vatican II and 1960s radicalism. According to one account,
[D]espite attempts to interpret the changes proposed as a process of evolution, they did in fact amount to a revolution for which the New York Brothers, among others, were poorly prepared to understand or to implement. The result was confusion and divisiveness at district and regional chapters, traditional structures dismantled without suitable replacements, personal choice and fulfillment valued more than the authority of superiors or community consensus. Wholesale departures from the Institute followed while the sources of vocations began to dry up.
The juniorate program at Barrytown closed in 1968, and the novitiate in the following year. The facility then stood idle for several years. On April 21, 1974, the Unification Church purchased the property for $1,500,000.
The Unification Church “Barrytown Training” Period
The Unification Church purchased St. Joseph’s Normal Institute because it had outgrown Belvedere International Training Center, purchased a year-and-a-half earlier in Tarrytown, New York, eighty miles to the south. Belvedere was utilized as a staging area for the church’s One World Crusade (OWC), Day of Hope evangelistic speaking tours, 100-Day training for members and international Leadership Seminars for overseas guests. However, there was exceedingly limited residential space and the main lecture venue was an oversized garage. Having begun to search for places in which to expand, the Barrytown property was discovered for sale an hour-and-a-half drive north of Tarrytown. The church’s oral tradition holds that Rev. Moon made seventeen trips to the property before deciding to purchase it on January 21, 1974. A “Rock of Decision” and plaque marks the spot.
Within days of the closing, the church opened a training center. Soon the halls were alive with 3-day, 7-day and 21-day workshops for guests transported from New York City. Like Belvedere, Barrytown also served as a staging area for the OWC, later renamed the International One World Crusade (IOWC) as members arrived from Europe and Asia (mainly Japan) to support speaking tours as well as prayer and fasts the movement conducted for the Watergate crisis and for Japanese wives of North Korean repatriates. However, the major purpose of the Barrytown International Training Center was to prepare the church’s foreign and domestic missionaries.
To do so, the church implemented a series of 120-day training sessions. The first of these began in early March 1975. Rev. Moon had earlier expressed his intention of sending missionary teams to 120 nations. Three-person foreign mission teams were to consist of American, Japanese and German members. Barrytown was the venue at which the American missionaries prepared. Apart from the regular program, Rev. Moon frequently visited, often every other day, to inspire the missionaries, speaking to them and answering questions. That spring, the American church sent out dozens of its most experienced and best leaders as missionaries throughout the world.
At the same time that he was launching the worldwide mission, Rev. Moon challenged American membership to quicken their pace of numerical growth. To that end, he instituted “Barrytown Training” under Rev. Ken Sudo, a renowned Japanese teacher. Over the next year, Barrytown sent out domestic “pioneers” tasked with expanding membership for planned Yankee Stadium and Washington Monument rallies. The total of Barrytown pioneers plus "helpers" assisting in various states stood at 153 in October 1975, or three for each state. In November a group of 67 went to the field, the total reaching 300 prior to the Yankee Stadium campaign. However, Rev. Moon did not place all of his eggs in the Barrytown training basket. Significantly, at a time when the need for members in the field was critical, he chose 56 of them to comprise the first class of Unification Theological Seminary.
The Barrytown Years
Just when Rev. Moon decided to open a seminary is unclear. He expressed early interest in establishing a university and purchased greenbelt land around Tarrytown for that purpose. Municipal resistance blocked that initiative, and in October 1974, Rev. Moon spoke to David S.C. Kim and Michael Young Warder about establishing a Seminary in Barrytown. David Kim became the Seminary’s first president and Michael Warder, the first chief administrator. Warder set up an office and recruited two librarians to begin “the monumental task of building a library, prepared legal papers and literature, and began the process of recruiting faculty members.” Therese Stewart, a former Franciscan nun and the Seminary’s first academic dean, joined the staff in March 1975 to help prepare the detailed application for a charter from the state of New York and assist in the selection of faculty.
The curriculum was finalized, additional staff hired, and classrooms and dormitories prepared over the summer. Nearly 400 applications for admission from the movement’s membership were received and 56 students from nine nations were selected. They arrived on September 15, 1975 and on September 20, UTS conducted its opening convocation in the Barrytown Main Chapel. In his convocation address, Rev. Moon stated, “We must change our direction from the established theologies which are deprived of life and spirit and turn to a new theology with a dynamic vitality and lifestyle in which God would directly participate.” He concluded by declaring, “I strongly believe that the Inaugural Convocation of the Unification Theological Seminary today is the laying of the cornerstone of the Earthly Kingdom of God.”
The David S.C. Kim Administration (1975-1994)
David Sang Chul Kim (1914-2011) was one of five members with whom Rev. Moon established the Unification Church in May 1954. He also was its first foreign missionary, as a United Nations scholar to the University of Swansea, Wales for a year, beginning in August 1954. He was the church’s second missionary to the United States, arriving as a student to Western Conservative Baptist Seminary, Portland, Oregon on September 18, 1959. He had been an official in the Korean national government and a deacon/choir director in the Presbyterian Church. However, he was always “dreaming of uniting the established Christian and Buddhist religions” with the idea “to reformulate a new religious structure, based on Christianity.” At the time he joined the Unification movement, a spiritually sensitive member spoke to him in the spirit,
Dear Sang Chul! Since you have been searching Truth and God for 30 years, I have prepared for you and led you to this place… From now on your new name is David, after King David who destroyed Goliath in the Old testament. Your role is to fight the sinful world.
Inter-religious cooperation and fighting the sinful world, in this case battling the State of New York to obtain the Seminary’s charter, were key themes David Kim’s 19-year presidency.
Inter-religious cooperation: UTS was unique among U.S. seminaries in that it installed an entirely ecumenical faculty. The founding faculty members were Dr. Thomas Boslooper, A Dutch Reform minister and Professor of Biblical Studies; Dr. Sebastian Matczak, a Jesuit priest and professor of philosophy; Dr. Warren Lewis, a Church of Christ professor of Church History; Dr. Francis Elmo, a Roman Catholic professor of Religious Education; and Dr. Young Oon Kim, the only Unificationist on the faculty, who was professor of Systematic Theology and World Religions. Dr. Young Oon Kim, like David Kim, was a member from the movement’s earliest days in Korea. She was a professor at Ewha Women’s University and “a noted woman intellectual in Korean society.” She was the movement’s first missionary to the United States, having arrived in Eugene, Oregon on January 4, 1959.
Within a year, UTS hired Josef Hausner, a Jewish rabbi and Holocaust survivor as professor of Biblical Literature and Judaic Studies; Dr. Constantine Tsirpanlis, a Greek Orthodox professor of Church History; Dr. Joseph McMahon, a Roman Catholic professor of Education and Philosophy; Dr. Henry Thompson, a United Methodist professor of Old Testament and Homiletics; and Dr. Hae Soo Pyun, a Confucianist professor of Oriental Languages and Oriental Philosophy. In the first catalog, UTS described itself as “a new graduate school of religious studies” that “seeks to promote interfaith, interracial and international unity.” Apart from decisions on academic policy, faculty meetings were exercises in mediating Eastern and Western branches of Christianity, Catholicism and Protestantism and Eastern and Western philosophies of education.
The Seminary pursued inter-religious engagement not only through its faculty and curriculum but through “theologian conferences” which began in early 1977. UTS effectively parlayed interest stimulated by controversy about the movement into a broad-based ecumenical and inter-religious conference program. This began in February 1977 when Professor Herbert Richardson of St. Michael’s College at the University of Toronto brought together 8-10 of his former students—now professors teaching in various parts of North America—to dialogue with UTS seminarians about Unification theology and the Unification Church. This led to a follow-up conference in April and several more weekend conferences before the end of the year. In 1978, the Seminary hosted two "Evangelical-Unification" dialogues convened by evangelical author Richard Quebedeaux, which brought its students into conversation with "born-again" Christians.
By this time, the conference program caught the interest of Rev. Moon who committed resources to its development. With his support, UTS sponsored a weeklong “Virgin Islands Seminar on Unification Theology” for fifty theologians, scholars of religion, philosophers, ministers, social scientists and others from July 22-29, 1979. Ferment from that conference carried over into the first "Advanced Seminar on Unification Theology" held the following February in the Bahamas. This resulted in the establishment of the New Ecumenical Research Association (New ERA) which worked alongside UTS to sponsor conferences, seminars and publications. Hundreds of scholars participated at movement expense in summer seminars which were held in Hawaii, Puerto Rico, Madeira, the Canary Islands and Athens, Greece under the New ERA banner from 1980-84.
The Seminary’s distinctive form of "academic ecumenism" generated significant synergy. In response to a proposal by a New ERA board member, the movement convened the first of four annual conferences on "God: The Contemporary Discussion" in 1981. The Youth Seminar on World Religions (YSWR) emerged out of the first "God Conference.” Rev. Moon endorsed YSWR, and from 1982-84, some 150 students and professors gathered annually during the summer for a 1-week orientation at UTS and 7-week around-the-world pilgrimage to sites associated with the religious traditions of Buddhism, Christianity, Confucianism, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism and Unificationism. These developments expanded the movement’s ecumenical and inter-religious network and involved religious scholars of the highest rank, including Huston Smith, author of The World’s Religions and one of the country’s foremost authorities on world faiths. Smith, with his wife, co-chaired the first two Youth Seminars, and he served as chairperson of the fourth God Conference.
The UTS/New ERA model afforded additional benefits. During the early 1980s, more than 30 UTS graduates were pursuing doctorates in religion at major U.S. seminaries and universities. They served as lecturers, panelists and conference coordinators for many of these meetings, gaining invaluable experience. In addition, the church applied the New ERA model to its ministerial outreach, beginning Interdenominational Conferences for Clergy (ICC) in 1982. More than 800 ministers attended ICC gatherings by 1984. The International Religious Foundation (IRF), housed at UTS, was incorporated in 1983 as an umbrella organization for interfaith and ecumenical activities sponsored by the Unification Church. Its major project was the Assembly of the World's Religions which brought together over 600 professors, clergy, artists, students, spiritual leaders, and professionals in many fields from 85 nations at the Americana Great Gorge Resort in McAfee, New Jersey from November 15-21, 1985. In this way, UTS served as the seedbed of ecumenical and interreligious activities pursued by the larger movement. Others picked up the mantle and later organizations such as the International and Interreligious Federation for World Peace (IIFWP) and the Universal Peace Federation (UPF) derived from initiatives begun at UTS.
Battle for a New York State Charter and Accreditation: In order to be an educational institution authorized to award degrees, the Seminary needed a charter from the state of New York. UTS submitted its application on April 28, 1975. Some schools obtained their charters in a year or less. For UTS, it was a fifteen-year struggle which included multiple lawsuits and an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court. At issue were controversies swirling around Rev. Moon and the Unification Church. Members of the New York Board of Regents repeated allegations of brainwashing, alleged deceptive practices of the Church, and alleged liaisons with the Korean government or KCIA. On March 23, 1977, the New York State Senate unanimously passed a resolution asking the Board of Regents to delay consideration of the Seminary’s application. The Regents postponed their decision on the application six times, sent four site review teams, and convened a committee to investigate non-academic allegations.
The Seminary’s battle for its state charter proceeded in two stages. The first extended from the initial filing in April 1975 through the State Board of Regent’s rejection of the application in February 1978 and litigation lasting until December 1981 when the U.S. Supreme Court declined to review the judgment and opinion of the Regents. The struggle opened a fissure between professional consultants retained by the State Education Department (SED) who recommended approval of the application based on the Seminary’s educational qualifications and the Board of Regents who, in the Seminary’s estimation, were motivated by political considerations. Ewald B. Nyquist, New York Commissioner of Education at the time UTS submitted its application, stated in court documents that members of the Board of Regents acted in an “arbitrary, capricious and discriminatory manner,” delayed making a decision on the application “for an unconscionable length of time in the hope of uncovering negative findings,” and subjected the Seminary to “greater scrutiny” and “higher requirements” than other applicants.
The Regents final on-site investigation was especially egregious. Notifying UTS by telephone at 4:30 p.m. the day before a 9:00 a.m. December 20, 1977 visit at a time when the Seminary registrar was unavailable, the team alleged irregularities in admissions, a misrepresentation that UTS offered a Master of Religious Education “degree” (which it could not do minus the charter), and questionable financial status as the basis for the Regent’s 13-0 denial of the application on February 28, 1978. UTS filed suit in the Albany County Supreme Court in June. The judge dismissed the proceeding and sustained the Regent’s denial in September. The Seminary then appealed to the New York Appellate Division which upheld the lower court. Attorneys for UTS then appealed to New York State’s highest court, the Court of Appeals, and lost by a 4-3 margin on June 11, 1981. As noted, the U.S. Supreme Court declined to review the decision in December 1981. This brought to an end the first stage of the Seminary’s battle to obtain its state charter.
The second stage commenced with submission of a second application on March 30, 1984. The second charter application reflected a sea-change in the Seminary’s self-understanding. Rather than as a “new graduate school of religious studies” promoting “interfaith, interracial and international unity, UTS emphasized preparation of students “to be theologically-trained leaders in the Unification Church.” Essentially, UTS narrowed its focus and took on more of the trappings of a denominational seminary. Students who previously would have gone on for doctoral studies at other seminaries now entered the Seminary’s newly established Divinity program. The sponsoring church donated $3 million for an endowment, guaranteed ongoing financial support and deeded the 250-acre property including all facilities to UTS. Reflecting the ascendancy of preparation for leadership in the Unification Church over ecumenical and interreligious work, New ERA and the International Religious Foundation offices, which had been housed at UTS, departed Barrytown and relocated to New York City.
As a result of these changes, UTS made more headway with the New York State Education Department and Board of Regents. The regents granted UTS a “provisional” charter on November 21, 1986, more than eleven years after the original submission. Some 450 students had graduated by then, none of whom were able to obtain a degree. But this was not a complete victory. Full registration was conditional on fulfilling seventeen points of improvement. In addition, “only those who entered after the programs were registered, i.e., January 1987, were eligible for degrees, and their transcripts had to be submitted to the Board of Regents for approval.” Finally, on January 17, 1990, nearly 15 years after submitting its original charter application, UTS was granted its absolute charter by the State of New York. UTS now could grant degrees and process student visas on its own authority. Appropriately enough, Dr. Donald Nolan, who as Deputy Commissioner for Higher and Continuing Education conveyed the State Education Department recommendation that UTS be granted its absolute charter, was a Christian Brother and had graduated from St. Joseph’s Normal Institute in Barrytown.
Community Life: The Seminary embodied a distinctive community life during the David S.C. Kim administration based on the imprint of two charismatic personalities. The first was Rev. Moon. UTS had a unique relationship with its living founder who was also the founder of the church it served. He was the Seminary’s most consistent promoter and effective recruiter. In the earliest years, he exercised a relatively hands-on role in candidate evaluations and recommendations, including those who went on for advanced studies. He also played a decisive role in mission assignments. Although careful not to intrude on the school’s academic program, he stressed the value of experiential education. This was strikingly evident in a great carp fishing campaign he launched during the Seminary’s second year.
Seminarians knew Rev. Moon was an avid fisherman. The genesis of the campaign which came to include leadership of the entire church was in 1977. According to Bento Leal, a member of the Seminary’s first class,
Father was fishing on the bank of the Hudson River with a few of us in early 1977, when Takashige Sakezono … came rushing up to Father with a large brown carp wrapped in a volleyball or tennis net.
He told Father where he got it, and Father was off like a shot in that direction. Within a couple of hours, several of us—maybe 20 or so—were knee deep, shoulder to shoulder, holding a volleyball or tennis net in a line several yards wide at the opening of this small finger of the lagoon… and we walked the netting forward step by step toward the end of that fingerling, perhaps only 40-50 feet, and carp of all colors were being forced into the shallows—churning like crazy. It was a sight to see!
Rev. Moon immediately purchased netting and strong string and seminarians “began a nightly job of net building with him—first in the 1st floor lecture hall, and then later out on the soccer field.” Eventually, the net, some six feet in height, stretched from the UTS entrance past the main building, nearly a quarter-mile in length, long enough to cover the full width of Tivoli Bay at the north end of campus. At high tide on April 24, 1977, 120 seminarians and staff plunged into the still frigid waters, marching the net across the shallow bay with water up to their necks while Rev. Moon in a row boat secured it to the bottom with long poles.
The idea was that at low tide carp would be trapped in the netting or mud and seminarians would fish them out. Unfortunately, the net caught on a submerged tree branch and all the carp escaped. Not to be deterred, Rev. Moon perfected the technique and during spring 1977, Barrytown became the focus of a full-scale fishing campaign for the church’s national and even international leaders. Plunging into freezing water (warmer by mid-spring), wading through mud, avoiding devil heads, and extracting carp by hand was viewed as an exceptional educational experience. Rev. Moon moved on to further fishing exploits and trainings in Gloucester, Massachusetts and Kodiak, Alaska. However, the Barrytown carp fishing campaign remained as an indelible part of seminarians’ collective memory and oral tradition. Most of the carp were transferred to the Seminary’ five-acre pond, being unfit for consumption, polluted by 1970s era Hudson River PCBs.
David S.C. Kim was the second charismatic personality who shaped the Seminary’s community life during its first two decades. David Kim, later Dr. Kim, had significant stature as a former Korean government official, founding member of the Unification Church, UN scholar, one of the original missionaries to the United States, and the person within the institution to whom the founder primarily related. However, his leadership was not based on position. As he put it, his leadership style was “to figure out what Rev. Moon wanted ahead of time.” He said he was “not a leader waiting for instruction” because then it was “too late.” He advised others to “be thinking leaders, not blindly-following leaders.” He had an outsized personality and inspired a good deal of loyalty and affection in his associates and subordinates, including this writer. After his 2011 passing, I wrote,
Spirituality was never a chore with President Kim. He had the ability to make any occasion an event. Seminarians not only roused themselves for 5 a.m. Sunday Pledge services but stayed up long afterwards for “morning walks” … His “Morning Briefs,” later called “Kingdom-Building Sessions,” after weekday 6 a.m. chapel services were legendary. Some students may have checked their watches, wondering whether they’d be able to make it to breakfast before eight o’clock classes, but most lost track of time entirely. Likewise, President Kim’s “Kitchen Cabinet” meetings for staff and faculty were free-wheeling affairs that could go anywhere. If the chairs in the Faculty Dining Room had seat belts, we would have strapped ourselves in.
He placed his stamp indelibly upon the Seminary in its formative years.
The Seminary’s organization under President Kim’s leadership was familial and communal. According to the Student Handbook,
The senior Seminary Administration serves the students from the position of parents. Student officers and team leaders act as older brothers and sisters and provide support and guidance to the community.
In addition to President Kim, the senior administration consisted of Academic Dean, Therese Stewart whom President Kim referred to affectionately as “Mother Superior,” and Executive Vice-President Dr. Edwin Ang who succeeded Michael Warder as the Seminary’s chief administrator in 1976 and whom President Kim referred to affectionately as “Chinese Chiang Kai-shek” (students were “green onions”). In many ways, UTS resembled a monastic settlement. The Seminary had an almost entirely resident student population, most of whom were single and received church scholarships covering tuition, room and board. They accepted Spartan living conditions including communal dorms, performed the bulk of the school’s custodial functions, and operated under the familial model of institutional culture. Apart from contracted and salaried faculty, the Seminary provided the staff, including senior administrators with stipends and benefits, i.e., housing, sometimes cars, day care for children and an elaborate reimbursement system for expenses.
President Kim’s leadership held the community together for the bulk of his tenure. However, there was increasing recognition of “management issues.” President Kim had a particular liking for mavericks and misfits, folks who didn’t fit in easily elsewhere in the movement. At times, there were more than a hundred staff, essentially one staff member for every student. Everything was communal. Families did food shopping in the Seminary kitchen’s walk-in refrigerator. The library was open twenty-four hours a day; laundry room machines were free with giant barrels of free detergent; UTS ran a fleet of vehicles and operated five day-care centers to take care of staff children. In an effort to cover ballooning expenses, UTS incorporated a business subsidiary, Creative Originals Inc. (COI), which coordinated student fundraising during break periods and was successful for a number of years. However, COI eventually over-extended by contracting permanent mall locations with lease payments it could not meet and ran up huge operating deficits. COI also accumulated land and property holdings throughout the Mid-Hudson Valley. Unfortunately, with a housing market collapse in the early 1990s these also were at risk as well as the Seminary’s $3 million endowment from the church.
Something had to give.
In 1991, students proposed and succeeded in transitioning to a tuition-based rather than full-scholarship system which mandated fundraising between terms. The same year, UTS staff transitioned from a stipend to a salary system. These changes had significant consequences. A student population that paid for its education and accommodations encouraged independence and raised expectations. A staff that was professionalizing was inclined to question operations not perceived to be rational. This created a degree of dissonance between what the Seminary had been and what it was becoming. The senior administrators were caught in the middle. With a mostly gentle but firm push from the founder, President Kim, Dean Stewart and Dr. Ang retired together in May 1994.
The Theodore Shimmyo Administration (1994-2000)
Those associated with UTS expected Rev. Moon to recommend a Korean leader as President Kim’s successor. President Kim also had an informal list of candidates, all Koreans. However, Rev. Moon surprised everyone by recommending Dr. Theodore Shimmyo. Dr. Shimmyo was a graduate of Tokyo University, a graduate of the Seminary’s first class in 1977, and obtained a Ph.D. in systematic theology from Drew University. He returned to UTS as Assistant Professor of Theology, later Assistant Academic Dean and finally Special Assistant to the President. The trajectory was clear. In addition to his emergence within the Kim administration, another trend that pre-dated Dr. Shimmyo’s presidency was an influx of Japanese students. Beginning in 1989, Japanese and Asian entering cohorts increased dramatically. Over the five-year period preceding Dr. Shimmyo’s presidency, Asian students comprised 58% of the student population. In 1993, entering students were 69% Asian, primarily Japanese. UTS was moving from a predominantly American and Western student population to a largely Japanese and Eastern one.
A third trend that pre-dated Dr. Shimmyo’s presidency and which he continued was professionalization. Building on efforts of the previous administration, one of his tenure’s signal accomplishments was the Seminary’s initial accreditation by Middle States Association (MSA), one of the country’s eight regional accreditors, in 1996. Accreditation meant that UTS met the full range of MSA’s “characteristics of excellence” in higher education. It also meant UTS credits were recognized, and could be transferred to schools anywhere in the country. A final trend that predated Dr. Shimmyo and continued under him was that of strong presidential leadership. His administration revolved around what he termed “the two wheels of UTS,” life of faith and academic excellence. Life of faith, for President Shimmyo, referred to a set of absolutes which Rev. Moon defined in the mid-1990s as “absolute faith, absolute, love and absolute obedience.” Balancing life of faith and academic excellence was a delicate task and one that challenged the Shimmyo administration.
Academic excellence: After obtaining its provisional charter from New York, UTS applied to be a candidate for accreditation with Middle States Association on October 31, 1987. The Seminary originally intended to apply for candidacy status with the Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada (ATS), the accrediting body for theological seminaries, but was rebuffed on the grounds that it did not meet ATS’ “constitutional provision” of Christian identity. Therefore, UTS elected to go the secular accreditation route. The Seminary, under President Kim, submitted a Candidate for Accreditation Planning Document in March 1988, hosted a three-person assessment team in May, and was granted candidate for accreditation status at the June 22-23, 1988 meeting of the MSA Commission. UTS was required to file reports every six months followed by visits by a Commission-designated consultant, undertake a comprehensive self-study, be evaluated and receive an accreditation decision within six years of admission to candidacy status.
For UTS, things rarely went according to schedule, especially when it involved external examiners. In this instance, the six-year protocol was interrupted by the retirement of the Seminary’s founding administration. UTS submitted a nearly 200-page Institutional Self Study in March 1995. In April, a MSA evaluation team determined that the Seminary met eleven out of its fourteen accreditation standards but expressed concerns in the areas of financial stability, physical plant and governance. The Commission deferred action and required UTS to submit a Follow-Up Report in a year’s time followed by another team visit. When the evaluation team paid a follow-up visit to UTS in October 1996, they pronounced themselves “impressed” by the efforts and improvements over the past year. On November 20, MSA Commissioners voted to accept the follow-up team’s report and on December 11, 1996, President Shimmyo received notification that the Seminary’s application for accreditation was approved.
Accreditation opened up additional avenues of advancement. In November 1997, the U.S. Department of Education granted provisional approval of UTS as a participant in the department's student financial assistance programs. This meant that the Seminary was eligible to participate in the Federal Direct Student Loan Program, the Federal Family Education Loan Program and the Work-Study Program. Previous applications to the Department of Education were unsuccessful as the Seminary was not judged to have proved its financial stability. UTS also set its sights on gaining approval for a Doctorate of Ministry (D.Min.) degree program.
The sponsoring church, at Rev. Moon’s direction, funded more than thirty graduates from the Seminary’s first three classes to obtain Ph.D.’s in various theological fields at leading U.S. universities and seminaries. However, he retained interest in the UTS offering its own doctoral program. The Seminary’s Master of Divinity (M.Div.) degree, begun in 1980, was the prerequisite degree for admission to the D.Min. On July 10, 1996, prior to UTS obtaining its initial accreditation, the Unification Church International (UCI) donated $1 million toward creation of the program. In 1997, the Seminary hired Dr. Kathy Winings as Program Director. Dr. Winings was a 1987 UTS graduate who held an Ed.D. from Teacher’s College, Columbia University. She served as Executive Director of the International Relief and Friendship Foundation (IRFF) and had been a leader in the church’s campus and youth ministries. The Board approved the program design in June 1998 and adopted a schedule for submitting it to New York State and Middle States by the end of the year.
Life of Faith: No less than President Kim, Dr. Shimmyo set the tone for UTS community life during his administration. Some things stayed as they had been before. Rev. Moon continued to be the Seminary’s most consistent promoter and effective recruiter. Apart from the $1 million grant to launch the D.Min. program, he approved additional funding to address deferred maintenance in the physical plant which was one of the issues that delayed the Seminary’s initial accreditation. He also sent students. In November 1994, he directed twelve regional leaders from Korea to attend UTS, starting the next term. Members of Rev. Moon’s family enrolled as well as a top leader from his personal staff. These were potent expressions of support to the Seminary and its new president. They also yielded a then-record enrollment, 178 registered students in 1994-95. In 1996, Rev. Moon instructed the Japanese church to prepare 150 applicants for UTS. In April 1998, likely in response to the preponderance of Japanese students, Rev. Moon directed that current American leaders “who did not graduate from UTS must study there.” He went so far as to state, “[A]ll Unification Church leaders must be UTS graduates.” That spring, he gave a “loud and clear” direction that “all Unification Church graduates from the University of Bridgeport,” where the church-related Professors World Peace Academy (PWPA) held a controlling interest, “have to go to UTS!”
Denominational emphases which rose to the fore in the Seminary’s 1984 charter application, continued under Dr. Shimmyo’s leadership. Korean, the scriptural language of Unificationism, was made a requirement for students in 1995. Unification Studies courses also became a mandatory curriculum requirement. Reflecting this ongoing shift, UTS launched the Journal of Unification Studies In 1997 as “a forum for investigations into Unification theology, philosophy and practice. That same year, Dr. Shimmyo co-edited a volume of collected essays, Explorations in Unificationism. By 1998, members of the original ecumenical faculty had all either passed away, retired or moved on, mostly replaced by Unification faculty who had graduated from UTS and obtained doctoral degrees. UTS maintained a stated commitment to ecumenism, but its program was increasingly denominational.
This was continuous with previous developments. However, there were important differences between “Book One” and Book Two” of UTS. Most of these derived from differences in leadership style and philosophy of the first two presidents. President Kim’s leadership style was flamboyant; he was a proponent of “Unification optimism” and far from being risk-adverse. As noted, he was not a leader “waiting for instruction” but looked to break new ground. Although he and the founding administration cultivated a familial culture with themselves as parental figures, President Kim’s public persona was that of a field general. However, under his direction, UTS initiatives had less the feel of a coordinated advance than that of a guerrilla campaign. He referred to this as “organized disorganization” and “disorganized organization.”
President Shimmyo’s embodied a different leadership style and philosophy. In his inaugural address, he emphasized that he "will always be available and accessible to the whole seminary community." Shortly afterwards, he eliminated the separate dining room where faculty and administrators ate and encouraged them to take meals with students as he did. However, he interacted with students not as a parental or father figure, but as an elder brother. To assert himself as a father figure would usurp the only fatherhood that mattered, that of Rev. Moon. In this, President Shimmyo reflected a Samurai-style pattern of loyalty and attendance characteristic of the Japanese Unification Church. Virtue did not lay in figuring out “what Rev. Moon wanted ahead of time.” It consisted in absolute fidelity to his directions. This was not inconsistent with professionalization. Careful organization and efficiency rendered UTS more capable of fulfilling responsibilities. Still, professionalism and academic excellence were secondary to faith and its fruits. President Shimmyo emphasized sacrifice, bearing the cross, and taking on burdens. At a new student dedication ceremony in 1997, he stated, “I have decided that throughout my entire life I will increase the amount of burdens on my shoulders. When I die … I want to die with the heaviest burdens of God on my shoulders.” Fond of theological paradoxes, he concluded by saying, “With that kind of attitude, you will be able to understand the love of God.”
Based on his leadership style and philosophy, President Shimmyo introduced rigorous standards of faith and behavior. He expressed displeasure with staff who did not make the hour-and-a-half trip to Tarrytown for Rev. Moon’s 6:00 a.m. sermons on Sunday mornings or the Seminary’s daily 6:00 a.m. morning services. President Shimmyo did not relocate his family to Barrytown, and UTS adopted policies that discouraged students from bringing wives and children to campus, this at a time when the wider church was emphasizing “true family values.” President Shimmyo accepted being State Leader for upstate New York during church campaigns and students did outreach activities. However, the main barometer of student and Seminary success was the willingness of seminarians to accept mission assignments upon graduation. The Class of 1996, for example, went en masse to pioneer 33 cities in Mato Grosso do Sol, Brazil, a state of ‘two million people and twenty million cows’ in the Brazilan outback where the church had established a communitarian experiment. Seminarians who were shaky in their commitment were subject to pressure from President Shimmyo “not to graduate.”
The rigor of President Shimmyo’s program was acceptable to Japanese students but aroused discontent among the Seminary’s mostly Western staff. A number of them resigned, including the Administrative Dean, two recruitment officers (one of whom served as Admissions Director), Plant Director, Director of Institutional Services, and Controller. At the same time, the intake of American students, and Western students generally, slowed to an annual single-digit trickle while UTS ran what was undoubtedly the largest English as a Second language (ESL) program among accredited seminaries in the U.S. It included a program director, four instructors and more than 100 ESL students. Despite expressing the desire that more Americans attend UTS, Rev. Moon continued to endorse the Seminary and its President. During a July 1997 trip to South America, he lauded President Shimmyo, saying “This man renewed UTS in three years.” Still, something had to give.
Reversal of Fortune: Book II of UTS came to a crashing halt in the late 1990s. The immediate cause was a cessation of church funding in November 1998. This was devastating as the church had consistently provided grants that constituted 40-50% of the Seminary’s annual funding. In 1997-98, the church’s contributions totaled $1,560,000, or 43.48% of the Seminary’s total operating budget of $3,587,707. In 1998-99. Church contributions declined to $590,000 (there being no support after November) and in 1999-2000 to only $51,809, or 3.67% of that year’s total revenues of $1,361,294. The Seminary’s budget declined by more than $2 million during the two-year period and the Seminary had to adopt a number of emergency measures.
Two main factors led to the dramatic cut in funding. The 1997 Asian financial crisis was one. Starting in Thailand, the crisis gripped much of East Asia and South Asia, precipitating capital flight and fears of a global economic meltdown. Korea was one of the countries most affected. Restrictions on bank lending following the International Monetary Fund’s $58 billion bail-out of the Korean economy resulted in the apparent collapse of Tongil Group, a conglomerate or chaebol of the movement’s business and industrial holdings in Korea. On November 30, 1998, four companies of the Tongil Group—Tongil Heavy Industries, Hankook Titanium, Il Song Construction and Il Shin Stone—filed for court protection after having failed to keep up with bank loan repayments. An official of the South Korean government’s newly formed financial supervisory service said that the debts of the group’s sixteen companies exceeded $1.7 billion U.S. dollars. The Japanese church, which provided funding for movement projects worldwide, was tasked with bailing out Tongil enterprises.
The movement’s expenditures in South America during the 1990s were a second factor precipitating the cut. By 1995, Rev. Moon had made South America a focal point of his work. That year, the movement established “New Hope Farm” outside the town of Jardim (pop. 21,000) in the Brazilian state of Mato Grosso do Sol. Its landholdings in the state were later reported to be over 85 thousand hectares (210 thousand acres or some 328 square miles). The movement also purchased roughly 1.5 million acres of land (approximately the size of the U.S. state of Delaware) in Northern Paraguay, fronting the Paraguay River, near to its holdings in Brazil. The Paraguayan purchase included an entire 6,000-inhabitant town. These purchases and others were made both before and after the Seminary’s cut in funding. Together with the Asian financial crisis, they strained movement resources beyond the breaking point.
Still, the precise circumstances of the movement’s decision to cut UTS funding entirely and how that decision was communicated are unclear. Initially, the President of True World Foods, which provided Seminary funding, proposed a $50,000 cut in its monthly grant. In response, President Shimmyo stated, “the Founder would have to approve whatever changes are to be made” and that “he will write a letter to the founder soon.” The letter, or whatever communication that followed, did not have its intended consequences and shortly afterwards movement funding of UTS was entirely cut. In effect, President Shimmyo’s wish to “increase the amount of burdens on my shoulders” became a self-fulfilling prophecy. He and the Seminary endured a two-and-a-half-year “crucifixion course.” UTS abandoned its D.Min. program application, eliminated 10 of its 26 full-time staff positions, emptied its endowment and considered relocation scenarios, first to the University of Bridgeport and later to New York City.
Each of these steps was painful, and none of them solved the Seminary’s financial crisis. Funds earmarked for the D.Min. program were utilized to fund operations. Staff downsizing reduced expenditures but demoralized those who remained. Under Dr. Shimmyo, the Seminary paid off nearly $3 million in carryover debt from Creative Originals, Inc. with its original endowment and re-built a renewed endowment to $2.4 million as of June 1998. Now, that endowment was being drained. The University of Bridgeport, despite having been rescued by the Unification movement-funded Professors World Peace Academy (PWPA), rebuffed the Seminary’s proposal to relocate there which was Rev. Moon’s recommendation, citing its secular charter. Moving to New York City was thwarted by word that the movement was planning to commercially develop 4 West 43rd St.
There appeared to be no way out of the crisis. President Shimmyo’s answer was more faithful obedience. However, it needed to be questioned whether absolute obedience was a model that inspired investment. In the end, a sacrifice was required. Dr. Shimmyo informed the Seminary administration on May 26, 2000 that he had accepted a new mission from the Interreligious and International Federation for World Peace (IIFWP) and resigned as President of UTS. He reported that the Board Executive Committee accepted his resignation and recommended the election of Dr. Tyler Hendricks as the new president of UTS.
The Tyler Hendricks Administration (2000-2010)
Dr. Tyler Hendricks was a graduate of the Seminary’s second class (1978) and the first UTS graduate to complete doctoral studies, obtaining a Ph.D. in American Religious History from Vanderbilt University in 1983. He then served in a variety of church positions and taught part-time at UTS before becoming Vice-President of the Unification Church in America in 1989 and President in 1995. Following Dr. Shimmyo’s resignation, he became the Seminary’s first American president. Dr. Hendricks’ passion was church growth. He wrote his dissertation on Charles Grandison Finney, the leading light of America’s Second Great Awakening, and published Family, Church, Community, Kingdom: Building a Witnessing Church for Working Families shortly after becoming Seminary president. He was an advocate of UTS being a market-driven institution and developing a curriculum focused on ministry skills as well as academic excellence. During his administration, UTS succeeded in obtaining approval for its long-awaited Doctor of Ministry (D.Min.) program.
In addition to a focus on church growth and ministry, the other theme that characterized UTS during Dr. Hendricks’ tenure was its interdenomi¬na¬tional, later interfaith focus. A sea change that occurred during his presidency was the Seminary extending its borders beyond Barrytown and its Unification student population. In Fall 2000, UTS established an extension site, later an extension center at 4 West 43rd St., Manhattan where Unification students were in the minority. Of the twenty-seven students who matriculated during 2000-2001, twenty-two were non-Unificationists drawn from ten denominations including five Baptists, three Pentecostals, two Lutherans, two from the Church of God in Christ (COGIC), two Muslims, a Presbyterian, a Mennonite, an Orthodox, and a Hindu. In connecting with the sponsoring church’s interreligious activities, UTS came to increasingly brand itself as “The Interfaith Seminary.” This led to increases in funding and enrollment but also challenges in balancing church growth and interfaith which were not mutually reinforcing.
Recovery: Dr. Hendricks’ first order of business upon assuming the presidency of UTS was to address the financial and morale crisis that undermined the previous administration. He did so initially by convening meetings of faculty, staff, students, and local community members which focused on key questions, such as the Seminary’s purpose and what they wanted from their president. The main answer that emerged was that UTS should be interdenominational and market driven. This resulted in a “Strategic Plan for the Summer of 2000” which included financial and enrollment goals but more importantly, a revised purpose statement, a doubling of ministry requirements for the Seminary’s degree programs, and the determination to establish an extension site in New York City.
The revised purpose statement, published in the 2000-2001 Catalog, added a preamble to the previously listed purposes which focused on the preparation of students “to be theologically-trained leaders in the Unification Church.” The preamble stated that UTS carried out instruction “in an interfaith setting” for ministries “beyond race, nation and religion,” and that the Seminary was “committed to work with all churches and seminaries for the practical implementation of these ministries.” This was intended not only as an accommodation to non-Unification students at the New York extension site but also as a statement of direction. Barrytown was envisioned as a venue for denominational instruction. 4 West 43rd St., New York City was envisioned as a venue for ecumenical instruction.
These initiatives would not have been possible without the buy-in of the sponsoring church and Rev. Moon. Fortunately, circumstances had changed. The Asian financial crisis of the late 1990s had run its course and church-related business enterprises in Korea were less of a drain. In addition, after nearly a decade of focusing on South America, Rev. Moon shifted his attention to the United States. In May 2000, 120 U.S. clergy from seventeen denominations traveled to Seoul, Korea, for the inaugural American Clergy Leadership Conference (ACLC). This was the beginning of an important development to which UTS connected in proposing the establishment of a New York site for non-Unification clergy and lay leaders. Rev. Moon was inspired and offered up to $360,000 annually in ecumenical scholarship support. The church supplemented this with an in-kind contribution of floor space and additional monies for operational support. In October 2001, at Rev. Moon’s request, the Japanese church donated $3 million to the UTS endowment, more than replenishing the amount that had been depleted earlier. In December, the U.S. church passed a corporate resolution to provide a “letter of guarantee” of financial support to UTS covering any deficit that remains at the closure of the Seminary’s fiscal year “beginning in 2002 and continuing every year thereafter.”
These commitments went a long way toward assuring the Seminary’s financial viability. However, full recovery required a renewal of morale. After soliciting input from staff, students, faculty and community members, Dr. Hendricks led a group of staff and faculty in an exercise to articulate the Seminary’s “core values.” Two that stood out were “family” and “respect for diversity.” With respect to family, President Hendricks wrote,
We believe it is fine for employees to spend evenings with their family. We believe that a fresh employee has enhanced overall productivity. We also encourage the use of vacation time…
When we have a healthy marriage and home life, we do better at work. We perform at higher capacity. Our spirit is brighter and our focus is sharper…
Another manifestation of the core value of family is that we now welcome students to bring their families here … We welcome new families into our community!
One new family was his own, he being the first and only UTS President to reside on the Barrytown campus with his family. At the same time, the Seminary eliminated language in the Student Handbook that the senior administration served students “from the position of parents.” Students were to be treated as responsible adults. For the entirety of his tenure, President Hendricks taught a “Discovery” course dedicated to students discovering their passion and spiritual gifts, crafting a personal mission statement, developing a resume and plotting their future. He described his approach as one of “Building Relationships - Learning What Matters.”
Institutional initiatives were equally important in renewing morale. Establishing the New York extension site was a significant boost. In a “President’s report” to the Board in October 2001, Dr. Hendricks stated, “We have to become a flexible and adaptable institution.” Early in his tenure, Dr. Hendricks penned an article titled “God’s Tylenol” in which he endeavored to show the myriad ways UTS had advanced “God’s providential work in America and worldwide.” The implication was clear. What the Seminary had accomplished before, it could do again. UTS aggressively pursued a plethora of new initiatives. The administration vacated the main building’s northwest wing, dedicating it as a conference center and hired a business manager to promote it. The Seminary obtained funding to scholarship “second generation” Unificationists, set up an Intensive English Program (IEP) for non-native speakers who had difficulty meeting entrance requirements, and upgraded student amenities, renovating three dorms and the main dining hall. UTS also began awarding honorary doctorates, its first awardees in June 2001 being Rev. and Mrs. Moon. For several years, the Seminary hosted an impressive North America Educators Conference which brought together several hundred Unification educators from across the country to share best practices. UTS also pursued local community relations, publishing the Barrytown Gazette and opening “Father’s Trail” along the Hudson River to the public as part of a New York State Greenway Trail intended to run from Albany to New York City. The Seminary launched its Doctor of Ministry program and investigated beginning an undergraduate college.
Despite these efforts, the UTS was still having trouble making ends meet. The Seminary closed most fiscal years with more expenses than revenues. This created friction with the sponsoring church which was responsible to cover deficits, especially when the administration projected operational losses and failed to submit balanced budgets to the Board. The Seminary did not often meet enrollment goals, was forced to sell most of its off-campus housing, enacted personnel cuts, utilized faculty for administrative work, took out substantial lines of credit to make it through break periods, and still considered relocation as well as easements and lease offers on the Barrytown campus. By AY 2006-07, it was clear that UTS needed to take a bold step.
The Interfaith Seminary: At an October 2006 retreat, the Seminary Board made a decision to configure UTS as an interfaith seminary. Board members concluded that this was in harmony with the Seminary founding vision of promoting “interfaith, interracial and international unity.” More than that, they agreed that “the primary mission of the school is inter-religious peace building.” One Board member envisioned UTS graduates “bringing peace on every level… peace in families, peace in schools, peace in neighborhoods, peace in offices, whether government offices or business offices, peace in the broadcasting industry, peace in music… our graduates are… peace ambassadors; but with theological training.” Dr. Hendricks reported that his “most important learning” at the retreat was the “general sense of the inter-religious peace mission of the school.” He said he “didn't hear anyone take a contrary position.” Several board members suggested incorporating the word “Peace” in the Seminary’s name.
This vision would have been inconceivable were it not for inter-religious peace building orientation of the sponsoring church. As its name signified, the Holy Spirit Association for the Unification of World Christianity (HSA-UWC, or Unification Church) embodied a broadly ecumenical mandate. The church also pursued the “unification of all other religions” and taught that the returning Lord will “play the role of the central figure whom all other religions await.” In 1985, the church-related International Religious Foundation (IRF) which had its origin at UTS, sponsored an Assembly of the World’s Religions which brought together “over 600 spiritual leaders and seekers from 85 different nations of the world.” However, the church’s inter-religious and peace building emphases kicked into high gear with the collapse of communism. Supported by an international advisory board, Dr. Andrew Wilson, UTS Professor of Scriptural Studies, published World Scripture, A Comparative Anthology of Sacred Texts in 1991 and the church proliferated multiple “federations for world peace.” Rev. Moon proclaimed the “Completed Testament Age” and the church re-conceptualized itself as a post-denominational Family Federation for World Peace and Unification (FFWPU).
These emphases continued into the new century, spurred on by two shattering events, one of which occurred at UTS. As described by President Hendricks,
On the evening of June 11 , there was a thunderstorm in the mid-Hudson Valley. A bolt of lightning struck the five-foot high stone cross that has stood at the top of our Seminary for its 70 years of existence. The cross is not grounded, so the energy had no place to go but out horizontally. This snapped the cross at its base, separating it from the building, and blew off both arms. One arm fell with the pillar of the cross backwards onto the roof. The other careened forward, with pieces falling upon building parapets and to the ground as far as 60 feet away. No one was hurt, but one car suffered damage.
As a symbol of Christ’s suffering and salvific love for all humankind, the cross is heroic and magnificent. But as a symbol of humankind’s malice toward God expressed by crucifying His son, the cross induces pain and sorrowful grief to God. While a symbol of God’s victory, it is also a symbol of human sin. In 1974, Father Moon directed that the cross remain atop our Seminary. Upon hearing of its demise this June, he said that it is now time for all crosses to come down.
This led to a call for U.S. clergy to take down crosses from their churches as a barrier to unity among Christian, Jews and Muslims. More than 120 did so on Good Friday, 2003. A large delegation proceeded to go “beyond the cross” in seeking reconciliation with Jewish and Muslim brethren in the Holy Land. Over the next two years, several thousand religious leaders, civic officials, NGO leaders, professionals, and Unificationists from throughout the world participated in pilgrimages to the Holy Land, as the Middle East Peace Initiative (MEPI) became a major Family Federation emphasis.
The other shattering event, far more seared into the public consciousness, was 9/11. Destruction of the World Trade Center Twin Towers and the resultant “war on terror” might have been viewed as a massive disconfirmation of the Family Federation’s program for world peace. In actuality, it had the opposite effect. On November 15, 2001, Rev. Moon proclaimed the beginning of Cheonju Pyeonghwa Tongil Guk, or in its abbreviated form Cheon Il Guk (the Nation of Cosmic Peace and Unity), the Unification version of the Kingdom of God on earth. He earlier proposed the establishment of an “inter-religious assembly” within the structure of the United Nations and launched an initiative to commission religious leaders and public officials as “ambassadors for peace.” In 2005, Rev. Moon founded the Universal Peace Federation, conceived of as an alternative, or “Abel UN” and proposed construction of a bridge or tunnel across the Bering Strait as part of an “international peace highway.” In 2007, he proclaimed the “Pacific Rim Era,” conceived of as beginning of a new civilization of peace.
Despite this ferment, UTS would not have reconfigured itself as an interfaith seminary were it not for the intervention of Hyun Jin (Preston) Moon, Rev. and Mrs. Moon’s third son. A graduate of UTS in 2001, he emerged as a major Family Federation leader and outspoken proponent of repositioning the Unification Church as a global peace movement. He envisioned UTS as a “Mecca of the interfaith movement” and “by its fortieth anniversary in 2015… the world's top interfaith seminary.” These were not empty sentiments. As Vice-President of the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification International (FFWPUI), Chair of the Unification Church International (UCI) which controlled major church assets, and Co-Chair of the Universal Peace Federation (UPF) which directed Family Federation peace projects worldwide, he was in a position to connect with the UTS board, faculty and administration in reconfiguring UTS as an interfaith seminary.
The first step in reorganizing UTS as an interfaith seminary was financial. With Hyun Jin Moon’s support, UTS succeeded in persuading the Unification Church of Japan (UCJ) to open its scholarship assistance beyond Japanese students, who struggled with language, to students globally including non-Unification “ambassadors of peace.” Having solidified funding, the administration and Board revised the Seminary’s 2007-2012 strategic plan, restating is core vision to be that of “Equipping People of Faith to be Interreligious Peacebuilders.” The faculty next added a required interfaith concentration to the Seminary’s Masters of Religious Education degree program and required interreligious peacebuilding foundation courses for its proposed Masters of Arts in Religious Studies program (approved in 2010). In March 2008, the Board approved a new mission statement that omitted any mention of preparing students for leadership in the Unification Church. Instead, it spoke of educating “people of faith” and “empowering them to serve communities of the Christian and diverse faiths.” With this action, the transition of UTS from a denominational to an interfaith seminary was complete.
Collapse: The interfaith seminary’s ascendency was short-lived. Given the availability of generous interfaith scholarships, significantly more students applied than were accepted into the Barrytown residential programs during academic years 2007-08 and 2008-09. The vast majority of them were Unificationists though they hailed from more diverse international locales since Japanese funding had been decoupled from exclusive support of Japanese students. There also was a sprinkling of non-Unification students. UTS offered a “Fundamentals of Interfaith Leadership” certificate course, awarded honorary doctorates to peacebuilding luminaries such as Douglas Johnston, President of the International Council for Religion and Diplomacy, and stated its intention of recruiting 115 students from diverse religious traditions to the Barrytown campus. Nevertheless, in early 2009, funding for interfaith scholarships was entirely withdrawn and UTS faced a crisis reminiscent of that which confronted the Shimmyo administration during the late 1990s.
There were two main reasons for the withdrawal of scholarship funding. The first was financial and the financial challenge was two-fold. Rather than in Asia, the 2008 global financial crisis originated in the United States. A crisis in the subprime mortgage market and excessive risk-taking led to the collapse of Lehman Brothers investment bank on September 15, 2008 and a full-blown international banking crisis followed by a global economic recession which impacted Asian markets. However, this was secondary to the situation in Japan where the church’s aggressive fundraising had led to police raids on Japanese Unification Churches, including the headquarters church, confiscation of records, and arrests of members. The situation worsened in early 2009. As the economic juggernaut of the Unification movement, the Unification Church of Japan’s financial contributions were essential to Family Federation operations worldwide and in January 2009, Rev. Moon directed that its contributions go elsewhere than UTS.
The financial situation was significant. But more important was a lack of consensus, particularly in the larger movement, as to the value of the interfaith model. Dr. Hendricks exposed the tension well in “An Interfaith Movement and Its Seminary,” a 2007 article published in The Journal of Unification Studies. He argued that “creation of a viable interfaith seminary cannot happen except within a movement of… local interreligious communities,” or what he termed “local peace communities” (LPC). Applying this to Unification context, he wrote, “The Unification movement needs to shed its hierarchical, old-line denominational characteristics and shift into a flat organizational style” which he referred to as “populist.” The “mainstream model,” he maintained, caused the Seminary to be a cemetery and the church to suffer. He concluded, “UTS will help the Unification movement transition from a mainstream denominational model to a populist peace community model. In tandem with a revolution at UTS, there needs to be a revolution in the entire Unification movement.”
The revolution did not happen. Powerful voices, particularly those of Hyun Jin Moon’s younger brothers, Kook Jin (Justin) and Hyung Jin (Sean) Moon, opposed repositioning the Family Federation as a global peace movement. They favored building up a strong institutional church, professionalizing its structure and dramatically increasing core membership to influence society. This precipitated a contest for the hearts and minds of membership and, more importantly, for the support of Rev. Moon. In the end, Rev. Moon tilted toward the younger brothers, appointing Hyung Jin Moon International President of the Family Federation in April 2008. In July 2008, In Jin (Tatiana) Moon, Rev. and Mrs. Moon’s second eldest daughter, was appointed chairperson of the Unification movement in America. Hyun Jin Moon opposed her appointment and in February 2009 attempted unsuccessfully to dislodge her. This further alienated him from the Family Federation and led to his leave-taking from the church, with supporters, in November 2009.
In this maelstrom, UTS was caught as a small vessel in the middle of a perfect storm. Unfortunately, the Seminary was on the wrong side of the power struggle. In Jin Moon, in particular, was irked by the support Dr. Hendricks had shown Hyun Jin. This rendered his continued leadership of UTS problematic. Financial support was not forthcoming and UTS was once again forced to dip into its endowment, downsize and consider relocation. Dr. Hendricks went so far as to question whether the church needed an accredited seminary and even suggested closure, positions the Board decisively rejected. In August 2009, rather than duplicate course offerings at the New York City extension center and Barrytown campus, the decision was made to relocate the Seminary’s Master’s degree programs to 4 West 43rd St. Dr. Hendricks subsequently requested a six-month research sabbatical which was rejected and on May 6, 2010 submitted his resignation. He wrote, “Unification Theological Seminary is entering a new phase in its history, with new opportunities and challenges. To take advantage of these opportunities and meet these challenges, I consider that the school is ready for fresh leadership.”
The Richard Panzer Administration (2010-2015)
Dr. Richard Panzer, a graduate of the Seminary’s third class, was elected by the Board at the recommendation of In Jin Moon who chaired HSA-UWC USA and became the UTS Board Chair. He held a doctorate in Educational Communication and Technology from New York University and was widely known for his work as a leader in abstinence-centered relationship education. He was the founder of “Free Teens,” director of the Center for Relationship Intelligence, and author of several books including Condom Nation: Blind Faith, Bad Science (1997), Relationship Intelligence (1999) and The War on Intimacy: How Agenda-driven Sex Ed Sabotages Committed Relationships and Our Nation's Health (2009). He had a keen interest in media initiatives of all types, including script-writing and videography, and was driven by a vision of broad-based cultural engagement.
His interests aligned well with those of In Jin Moon, who was CEO of the church-owned Manhattan Center, a media and performance venue out of which she launched Lovin’ Life Ministries (LLM), a Unification-styled mega-church which she served as senior pastor. Her intent was to re-brand the American Unification Church, making it one “that people are dying to join, dying to be a part of,” and to energize its youth. UTS and Lovin’ Life Ministries developed an active partnership during the initial years of the Panzer administration. In November 2011, In Jin Moon was elected Chair of the UTS Board of Trustees and two of her associates became Board members. One of them became a member of the Board’s Executive Committee and Vice-Chair, chairing Board meetings in In Jin Moon’s absence. UTS worked with Lovin’ Life Ministries in offering continuing education and online courses. However, these paled in significance to the Seminary and Church’s effort to launch an undergraduate college. Establishing Barrytown College of UTS became the consuming passion and finally the undoing of the Panzer administration.
Preparation for Barrytown College: As previously noted, Rev. Moon expressed early interest in establishing a university. In 1992, the Professors World Peace Academy (PWPA), a movement-funded organization, rescued the University of Bridgeport from financial exigency and obtained a controlling interest on its Board. However, UB retained its secular charter and rebuffed efforts of UTS to relocate there. In 1997, Rev. Moon recommended to then-President Shimmyo that UTS create a 4-year college of theological education for the movement’s second generation. At that time the idea of proposing a college was put on hold due to a loss of funding. UTS launched a more formal investigation into the possibility of offering a Bachelor Arts degree in 2004. The Seminary engaged a consultant, conducted a national survey of parents and youth to assess interest, and assembled a comprehensive business plan. Again, the project was not pursued, this time in order to complete efforts to submit an application for the Doctor of Ministry degree program.
In AY 2009-10, the UTS Board reopened discussion on the formation of an undergraduate program. A new market survey was developed and distributed which showed continuing interest. The Seminary’s proposal to the New York State Education Department indicated that there were “6,979 second-generation members in the United States of which approximately 350 reach college age each year.” The planned major, World Religions and Philosophy, was a natural outgrowth and extension of the Seminary’s existing academic program. The Seminary’s proposal to New York State concluded, “If an initial high quality program was priced competitively, Barrytown College would likely be able to admit a class of 50-60 students from Unificationist families living in America per year for the first five years.” The UTS Board of Trustees approved proceeding with the undergraduate application at its May 19, 2011 meeting and included its launch as a strategic objective in the Seminary’s 2011-2016 Strategic Plan.
Finances were critical for the new program. In an April 2, 2012 letter to the State Education Department, HSA-UWC Treasurer Eric Holt, a UTS Board member and Seminary graduate, communicated the church’s commitment “to provide necessary and sufficient funds” for the launch of Barrytown College. Specifically, the church made the following financial pledges:
2011-2014: $7,000,000 Unrestricted cash for operations and capital expenditures
2011-2020: $2,400,000 In-kind contributions (use of church facilities)
2011-2020: $8,000,000 Contribution to seminary endowment
This commitment was an important factor in the state’s approval of the Seminary’s application. Apart from securing church funding, the program’s business plan, particularly tuition pricing and financial aid, was crucial. It was decided that cost of attendance would be that of a lower-priced private college: $24,000 for tuition and $8,600 for room, board and fees. In announcing the price structure, Dr. Panzer wrote, “Unificationists who are accepted will be awarded a $12,000 scholarship and … Federal loans, work study and grants, which average $15,500 for students from low- and middle-income families, will also be available.”
Having secured funding and set its price structure, the Seminary proceeded aggressively with preparations to launch Barrytown College of UTS. Work began on a re-design of main building dormitories and the Seminary hired new staff: a project director, an undergraduate dean, a liberal arts professor (to be augmented by annual faculty hires and Seminary faculty), an undergraduate Director of Library Services, a Director of Admissions and Financial Aid, a Director of Student Life and a resident chaplain. Dr. Panzer was the college’s promoter-in-chief. Putting his media skills to use, he set up a college website and a YouTube channel. He initiated video and video-script contests on themes relevant to the college and organized a summer media arts internship program prior to the college’s opening. He set the school’s branding as “Become More,” drafted copy publicizing the college, spoke on behalf of the school and convened regular open houses. UTS hosted two site visits from the New York State Education Department, the first of which necessitated a response and follow-up visit. This delayed approval of the program until February 2013 and pushed the program’s start date from August 2012, as was originally intended, to August 2013.
Launch of the college: Barrytown College of UTS was nearly stillborn. Within a month of the school’s opening, the sponsoring church called for its closure. Reasons for the reversal included the passing of Rev. Moon on September 2, 2012, the collapse of Lovin’ Life Ministries, and the emergence of new Family Federation leadership. Rev. Moon had signed a Barrytown College proposal in April 2012 but otherwise was not directly involved in its launch. However, his passing resulted in turbulence for the movement as a whole and its projects, including UTS.
The collapse of Lovin’ Life Ministries was more immediately impactful. In September 2012, a matter of days after Rev. Moon’s passing, In Jin Moon abruptly resigned from her position when it became known that she was carrying on an extra-marital affair and had secretly gave birth to a child the previous May. She had recommended Dr. Panzer as President, had been a key backer of the college, and had authorized its financial support.
New Family Federation leadership at international and national levels was a third factor that threatened the college. The most striking development in the immediate aftermath of Rev. Moon’s passing was the emergence of Mrs. Hak Ja Han Moon, Rev. Moon’s widow. She acted decisively to consolidate her position as leader of the Unification movement and announced herself willing “to reduce the many projects that had been initiated until now.” She also insisted the movement projects be self-supporting. Significantly, she founded the Universal Peace Academy, a leadership training school in Korea that opened prior to Barrytown College and was perceived to be “in competition” with UTS. In the U.S., leaders emerged who did not have a role in the college start-up, who were less familiar with Dr. Panzer who came to UTS from the non-profit sector, and who became painfully aware that Lovin’Life Ministries financed many of its initiatives, including Barrytown College, through bank loans secured by key church properties in New York City.
While changes at the top were important, Dr. Panzer’s response to the call for closure was equally significant. In an article, “Does Barrytown College & UTS Have a Future,” he referenced “intense debate” and noted various “options have been proposed” including closing the college down as soon as at the end of this semester, selling the property, reducing or eliminating the Master’s degree program, and keeping only the D.Min. program.” He reiterated arguments of church officials “that the Seminary is expensive, that the church is in debt … that Mother [Moon] is calling for all institutions to be self-supporting and without subsidies … [and] only focused on higher education located in Korea.” Significantly, he stated, “Barrytown really belongs to our entire Unification community” and posted an online survey for member stakeholders “to let the church leadership know of your views.” Essentially, he decided to bypass Family Federation leadership and take his case directly to members.
Dr. Panzer insisted that “financial projections developed in cooperation with the HSA financial office indicate that Barrytown College could break even within two years and from that point onward help to pay for the expenses of the Barrytown property and other UTS degree programs.” Beyond that, he noted, “The 20 students in the first class tell us how much they appreciate being able to attend an accredited, proudly Unificationist college where they can pursue their B.A. degree in a healthy environment, while developing their faith AND intellect,” one implication being that they wouldn’t develop their intellect at the Universal Peace Academy in Korea. In an incendiary turn of phrase, he cited a professor who said “stopping the college after only 3 months was like killing a baby because it didn’t walk or talk yet.” The survey that he circulated elicited additional incendiary responses. One respondent wrote,
Stand your ground. If church officials want to take Barrytown make them take it by force. Stage a sit in. Remember Tienamen Square! Remember Kent State! Take personal responsibility and make Barrytown College your own.
A few respondents criticized the survey, complaining that it was “obviously designed to cherry pick answers” or that “response choices are emotionally charged and lacking respect for the depth of the problem.”
Dr. Panzer succeeded in averting closure, at least for the present. In an October 31, 2013 “Joint Statement to American Unification Movement by UTS Board Chair & President,” Drs. Michael Balcomb and Richard Panzer announced,
Last night at a special meeting of the UTS Board of Directors, the trustees, mindful of the input of several hundred of you from around the nation, affirmed its intention to work together with the HSA leadership to find ways to keep the Barrytown property that all of us cherish and love and move toward a sustainable future for UTS and all of its programs.
They noted that a “Save Barrytown Task Force” was being organized. On November 7, 2013, Dr. Panzer published an article listing “7 Steps towards the Future of Barrytown/UTS.” These included a 22% reduction in spending, placing all non-essential UTS properties onto the real estate market, developing a national network of Barrytown College Liaisons to help with recruitment, a national network of Support Barrytown Advocates for maintaining the Barrytown property, a "My Barrytown Experience" page on Facebook for Unificationists to share their personal stories and photos, and “a structure for those who expressed a desire to give.” In December, Dr. Panzer wrote of “Auspicious Signs for 2014!” He highlighted “13 new applications and confirmations for students desiring to become part of the Fall 2014 entering class… one third of our target goal of 40 new students!”
The reprieve Dr. Panzer won came at the cost of relationships. Bypassing church leaders and going directly to members in order to exert pressure as Dr. Panzer did in his “Future of Barrytown College & UTS” survey was unusual, if not unprecedented in Unification tradition. It opened him to accusations of not being a team player or even of going rogue. In his “Does Barrytown College & UTS Have a Future?” article, he referenced “efforts to bring in a new president.” These rumblings did not cease. In May 2014, the Trustee Committee of the UTS Board “raised the issue of the process and means to conduct the assessment of the President” and suggested that “an Ad Hoc Committee on the Assessment of the President be formed.” Dr. Panzer was on a proverbial short leash.
Dismissal: During 2014, Dr. Panzer continued to tout the value of Barrytown College and provided encouraging reports to the UTS Board and church. However, these were belied by realities on the ground in enrollment, finances and management. The undergraduate program enrollment targets and results were differently understood. In its application to the state, UTS indicated an annual intake of 50-60 students. The sponsoring church understood the goal for new class to be 40. The UTS Board set the number at 30, stating that its approval of the Seminary’s 2014-15 budget was conditional on 30 new student deposits being received by June 20, 2014. In December, Dr. Panzer acknowledged the recruitment goal for Fall 2014 was 40 but in later communications claimed the target was 25. In reality, the Fall intake was 18, less than the first year number of 20. The Panzer administration performed yeoman’s work in recruiting the first-year class, considering that UTS only obtained state approval in February 2013. However, the second-year results were disappointing. A significant part of the problem was that Barrytown College did not have the active support of the sponsoring church. This followed Dr. Panzer’s earlier decision to bypass Family Federation leadership and take his case directly to members.
Shortfalls in enrollment resulted in a financial shortfall. Dr. Panzer attempted to raise funds by proposing establishment of a Giving Institute at UTS/Barrytown College and launching a Barrytown Impact Campaign. In April 2014, the Seminary’s chief financial officer reported that UTS required $300,000 in “emergency funds” to go through the summer months. UTS subsequently sold a two-acre parcel of Hudson riverfront property for $800,000.
However, the revelation on September 8, 2014 that the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) had no record of the Seminary’s application for federal financial aid for the undergraduate program was far more serious than immediate financial needs. In fact, the US Department of Education denied the Seminary’s application to include the undergraduate program within the scope of its authorization to award federal financial aid in a letter to Dr. Panzer on December 26, 2013 which questioned the program’s capacity to administer financial aid. This was not reported to the UTS Board, prospective students or their parents. Instead, the administration took the position that Pell grant funding was delayed and awarded federal monies to undergraduate students in the form of loans for which the Seminary’s graduate program was authorized. This created major problems and UTS was later put on five years’ probation by the U.S. Department of Education. In addition, undergraduate students were promised grants, not loans. During AY 2014-15, the Seminary had to self-finance scholarship grant funding to which it did not have access.
The financial aid fiasco put the undergraduate program in an untenable position and raised serious questions about its management and the leadership of UTS. Middle States Association placed UTS on probation on June 26, 2014. Apart from issues of financial viability and sustainability, MSA found that the UTS administration, Board and sponsoring church were not in agreement as to the school’s purpose. MSA required that the Seminary, its Trustees and the supporting church reach “a definitive agreement” as to the institutional mission. Symptomatic of the lack of communication and transparency between the administration, board and church, UTS Board Chair Michael Balcomb found it necessary to explain why Board members learned of Middle States’ decision to place UTS on probation not from the administration but through the press. Additional irregularities surfaced including missing undergraduate admissions files and evidence that some undergraduates were admitted with inadequate documentation, including high school transcripts. It also was reported that UTS had $400,000 in accum-ulated receivables ($200,000 in uncollected tuition, $100,000 in uncollected conference center income, and $100,000 in uncollected tenant rent).
On November 30, 2014, the HSA-UWC Board passed a resolution reducing funding to UTS by 32 percent beginning January 2015. The resolution further stipulated that level of funding will only be available if the UTS Board agrees to close the undergraduate college in Barrytown at the end of the current academic year, remove Dr. Panzer as president, and form a joint committee with the church to figure out what the future of UTS and Barrytown campus should be including the level of church funding going forward. This prompted a public rejoinder from the President of the UTS Alumni Association titled, “HSA’s Financial Gun to UTS’s Head: We Will CUT OFF ALL FUNDING Next Month, if You Don't Agree to Our Demands.” Again taking his case to members, Dr. Panzer circulated an online “Save Barrytown College and UTS Petition” and survey. On December 30, 2014, he published, “Time for a Noonday Sun Settlement.” In it, he accused the sponsoring church of threatening the Seminary’s accreditation and breaking financial pledges to the New York State Department of Education. He indicated he would “not comply” with demands for him to resign and insisted that representatives of HSA on the UTS Board “file a written complaint of "misconduct, incapacity or neglect of duty" against him. Stating that that more than a thousand members had signed the “Save Barrytown College and UTS Petition,” he wrote,
Some people may think… HSA-UWC board members… hold all the cards. They could not be more wrong. There is something greater than financial power, what I would call moral power.
If HSA-UWC leaders had moral power they would not need to make bullying threats and demands… If the HSA leaders were wise, instead of squashing this powerful sentiment they would harness it. WHEN have we seen such vocalization in support of anything in the history of our movement?
In this, Dr. Panzer attempted to morph support for Barrytown College into a moral crusade.
Ironically, a day after publication of his noonday showdown article, Dr. Panzer reversed field and submitted a letter of resignation. That day, HSA President and UTS Board Chair Michael Balcomb posted a letter to the church reporting that Hak Ja Han Moon (True Mother to Unificationists) concurred that Richard Panzer should step down as UTS President. It was one thing to oppose HSA national leaders and another thing to oppose the movement’s co-founder. Nevertheless, Dr. Panzer offered his resignation contingent on four conditions, to be effective only when the fourth condition was met:
- The HSA-UWC Board agrees to affirm that the undergraduate degree program known as Barrytown College of UTS deserves a chance to succeed in the coming 3 years, to cease all words and actions which impede that process, and to actively support its marketing and recruitment;
- The HSA-UWC Board agrees to fund UTS at current levels through June, 2015;
- The HSA-UWC and UTS Boards agree to collaborate in developing a mutually acceptable funding reduction plan relative to HSA-UWC's contribution that is in conformance with maintaining MSCHE accreditation;
- The HSA-UWC Board accepts that the UTS board must enact a search process for a new UTS president in conformance with UTS Board Bylaws with the goal of doing so by March 31, 2015.
HSA-UWC leadership accepted Dr. Panzer’s conditions so long as his resignation was effective on or before January 10, 2015. On January 6, the UTS Board discussed the terms and the timing of Dr. Panzer’s offer of resignation and whether these would be acceptable to the Board and HSA-UWC. After two hours of discussion, they could not reach agreement and tabled a motion to accept Dr. Panzer’s offer. The next day, by a vote of 9-4, the UTS Board voted in favor of a resolution to remove Dr. Panzer “for cause.”
The circumstances that culminated in this action were a tortuous replay of the previous year. The main problem was Dr. Panzer’s inability to work in cooperation with the sponsoring church, a key job responsibility of the UTS president. In addition, due to his single-minded focus on the college, Dr. Panzer neglected the graduate Seminary, which resulted in UTS being put on probation by the Seminary’s accreditor. Finally, “deficiencies in management,” particularly with respect to administering federal financial aid and student admissions, resulted in a loss of confidence that Dr. Panzer possessed the capacity to manage the undergraduate program and lead UTS.
The Hugh Spurgin Administration (2015-2019)
The UTS Board appointed Dr. Hugh Spurgin interim UTS President on January 7, 2015 and President on April 9, 2015. Dr. Spurgin’s profile was the antithesis of his predecessor. Whereas Dr. Panzer came to UTS as an outsider, the founder and CEO of an independent non-profit, Dr. Spurgin was a longstanding Unification insider. A respected church elder, he served on the Seminary’s Board of Trustees for twenty years and the HSA-UWC Board for more than thirty years prior to becoming UTS President. In addition, whereas Dr. Panzer had no experience in educational administration, Dr. Spurgin worked for nineteen years as Principal, then President of Bridgeport International Academy, a college preparatory school adjacent to the University of Bridgeport, Connecticut. Finally, while Dr. Panzer was entrepreneurial risk-taker, Dr. Spurgin a manager and consensus-builder. He had more than forty years’ experience as a Unification Church city leader, evangelical tour leader, state leader, regional director, and national Vice-President. He also served as Executive Director of the International Cultural Foundation and the Professors World Peace Academy. A graduate of the Seminary’s first class, Dr. Spurgin earned a doctorate in American and European History from Columbia University. He had previously obtained a master’s degree in public administration.
Dr. Spurgin’s immediate task as President was to address the fallout from the previous administration. This included resolving the situation of Barrytown College and its students, rectifying the Seminary’s relationship with the Family Federation, and restoring accreditation with Middle States Association. Longer term, UTS needed to plot its future direction and resolve issues related to the use and expenditures required to maintain the Barrytown campus.
Closing Barrytown College: Rumblings as to the closure of Barrytown College accompanied its launch and dogged the program during its two years of operation. The Seminary’s February 2014 Self-Study reported,
[W]ith the passing of the Founder, the change in leadership of the Church with a different perspective on which educational initiatives to support, a decrease in available financial resources in the Church and competing educational initiatives that was drawing on the Church’s limited resources all translated into a lack of support for the Undergraduate Program and a concern that it was too expensive to maintain at this time.
The Self-Study further reported, “The discussions between the Church, the Board of Trustees and the Seminary since October 2013 have focused on the potential teach-out of the degree program.” Although the Seminary Board had only taken action to dismiss Dr. Panzer, Barrytown College was clearly at risk.
In a February 2, 2015 “Open Letter to UTS Alumni and Friends,” Dr. Spurgin stated he had “an open mind” and “no set agenda or predetermined idea of what to do.” However, he noted “administrative deficiencies and non-compliance with federal financial aid laws.” He also stated, “It is not possible for a small college to survive without government aid to students.” The following month he was more direct. In an article titled “Sobering news about the future of Barrytown College,” he reported on a face-to-face meeting between Barrytown College students, himself and Dr. Michael Balcomb, UTS Board Chair and President of HSA-UWC. Balcomb pronounced it “unlikely that we can open the Barrytown campus in September” and encouraged students “to consider other options” for continuing their undergraduate education. He noted that minus federal financial aid, students would have to pay $20,500 for tuition and housing for 2015-16 even with the $12,500 a year Founder’s Scholarship. The good news, he said, was that UTS and HSA-UWC agreed to provide the Founder’s scholarship over the next two years to transfer students from Barrytown College attending other accredited schools. He recommended students consider the University of Bridgeport, Sun Moon University in Korea, or The University of Nevada at Las Vegas where there was an active church-affiliated CARP chapter.
Dr. Balcomb asserted, “[T]he undergraduate program will neither close nor be suspended.” He referred to the cessation of operations as a “pause” with “wave two” later. Nevertheless, this triggered the resignations of three UTS Board members who did so in a public letter, “because of incredible bad-faith actions on the part of our HSA-UWC USA leaders regarding commitments made just a few months ago to keep the undergraduate program in Barrytown.” They claimed, “admitted inadequacies” of the UTS administration” were “nothing when compared to the willful, cynical way in which the undergraduate program has been undermined by the parent church.” They described the “takedown” of the program as “carefully scripted” and referred to “the boiled-frog method,” in which frogs are placed in cool water, with the heat gradually increased to boiling, at which point the frogs expire.”
In the end, the program was suspended. UTS concluded that it over-reached in launching the undergraduate program and returned to the “Seminary-alone” model under which it operated from 1975-2013. Dr. Spurgin did his best to defuse the situation, met personally with students and parents and arranged a full-day campus visit to the University of Bridgeport. Disposition of the undergraduate staff was simpler. Dr. Steven Murray, the founding Dean, resigned after the first year to assume the presidency of Ecumenical Theological Seminary in Detroit, Michigan. The undergraduate librarian found employment elsewhere. The Director of Admissions and Financial Aid was terminated prior to the program being suspended and the Director of Student Life resigned to join her spouse in California six months prior to closure. The Chaplain, full-time faculty and remaining administrative staff continued work in the graduate program. Most of the eighteen students who transferred to the University of Bridgeport rented a large house where they lived together, dubbing it the “Barry Townhouse.”
Re-accreditation and Beyond: With the undergraduate program suspended, Dr. Spurgin and his team focused attention on the graduate Seminary. The most pressing matter was eliminating deficiencies that resulted in UTS being placed on probation by its regional accreditor. This included reaching agreement with the Family Federation as to the Seminary’s purpose. The 2014 Middle States visiting team noted that the UTS mission statement did “not explicitly mention the sponsoring denomination” and instead referenced “empowering [students] to serve communities of Christian and diverse faiths.” This was at odds with the team’s perception that “the sponsoring church’s denominational leadership has shifted philosophically away from the Institution’s current ecumenical approach.” The team noted that the mission statement was also inconsistent with the “interpretation of mission” in the Board Bylaws. They required that the Seminary align its mission with the Board Bylaws and “the supporting denomination’s vision of what the Institution’s mission should be.”
This problem pre-dated Dr. Spurgin’s appointment, and UTS already moved aggressively to address Middle States’ concern with respect to its institutional mission. An online survey showed that alumni/ae objected to “no mention of the Founder and/or Unificationism” in the statement but “felt the school should retain an interfaith character.” Discussions followed among students, faculty and staff. With the cooperation of the President of the Family Federation, a Joint Ad Hoc Committee consisting of pastoral leaders from the sponsoring denomination, Trustees and Seminary representatives convened meetings in November and December 2014. After being appointed President, Dr. Spurgin engaged a consultant from the Association of Governing Boards (AGB) to support the alignment and mission review process. Six draft statements were narrowed down to a single statement which was circulated to stakeholders for comment. The revised statement continued an interfaith emphasis but committed the Seminary to “the Unification vision of one global family under God.” It was included in the Board Bylaws along with acknowledgement of Rev. and Mrs. Moon as founders and recognition of Seminary’s affiliate status with the Family Federation. UTS reported on this in a March 1, 2015 Monitoring Report.
On June 25, 2015, Middle States Association found UTS to be in compliance with accreditation standards on Mission and Admissions but not on Institutional Resources and Student Learning Assessment. UTS submitted a second monitoring report six months later, followed by another team visit. On March 3, 2016, Middle States removed the Seminary’s probation but requested an additional monitoring report, due the following September, documenting progress in three of the areas of concern. Middle States accepted the monitoring report but requested a progress report, due April 1, 2017 on two of the areas. Finally, on July 6, 2017, Dr. Spurgin announced, “UTS Accreditation Problems Are Over.” He reported that Middles States had accepted the Seminary’s April progress report and gave notice that the Seminary’s next evaluation visit was scheduled for 2023-2024. This brought to a close a nearly four-year re-accreditation cycle which included submission of a self-study, three follow-up monitoring reports and team visits, and a progress report.
UTS endured a Program Review of its financial aid practices conducted by the U.S. Department of Education (USDE) that replicated the ordeal it passed through with Middle States. The need for this review also resulted from deficiencies and violations accrued under the previous administration. The main problem was the award of $171,704 in federal loan monies to undergraduate students who were not part of an eligible program. This and other deficiencies precipitated an on-site Program Review shortly after Dr. Spurgin became President. Apart from liability for the funds, there was concern about how Barrytown College’s unauthorized disbursements would affect the graduate programs. The Department’s “Final Audit Determination” was that UTS would remain “provisionally certified” for three years. However, UTS was required to establish an irrevocable letter of credit (LOC) for five years, equivalent to ten percent of funds disbursed the previous year. The Seminary also was subject to heightened cash monitoring, meaning UTS had to disburse loan monies to students out of its own account before receiving funds from the government. In early 2017, USDE closed the review, determining that as a result of changes implemented the Seminary had liabilities of only $1,818.
Thus, UTS was in damage control mode during the first two years of Dr. Spurgin’s presidency. In an early fundraising appeal, Dr. Spurgin noted that being on the “front line” sometimes means “hold the line” and sometimes it means “advance, and press on.” Having held the line with Middle States and the U.S. Department of Education, UTS was in a position to “press on” in 2017. The graduate program’s enrollment numbers had increased and funding was stable. The Seminary’s 2017-2022 Strategic Plan laid out its lines of advance in four core objectives:
- Provide distance learning education to the worldwide Unification movement and the wider religious market;
- Transition to a new generation of Unification and UTS leadership;
- Strengthen community relations and expand academic programs in the urban context;
- Leverage real property assets for financial viability.
Of these, UTS made the most progress on the first two and the least on the second two.
Rev. Moon was a strong believer in online education. UTS had experimented with online courses and for several years offered a full menu of hybrid courses which combined in-class and distance learning elements. Beginning in February 2017, the Seminary conducted surveys of Family Federation leaders and members in 54 countries which showed “substantial support” for online education. UTS then investigated and purchased a top tier Learning Management System (LMS) as a platform for distance learning courses and conducted faculty trainings. In Fall 2017, the Seminary announced it was going “global” and began a pilot phase roll-out of fully-online courses. Enrollment and student satisfaction with the courses over four semesters were strong, and in Spring 2019 UTS applied to Middle States and the New York State Education Department for approval of its first fully-online degree program, an M.A. in Religious Studies. Both approved. Beginning Fall semester 2019, UTS students could pursue the degree entirely online or in combination with on-site courses.
The Unification movement as a whole was facing the challenge of transitioning to a new generation of leadership. UTS also was facing that challenge. During the first decade of its institutional life (1975-1985), more than thirty UTS graduates entered doctoral programs with generous grants from HSA-UWC. Many of them along with fellow Seminary graduates became major leaders in the Unification Church (later Family Federation) and allied organizations. Some joined the Seminary faculty. However, that generation was approaching the end of their careers and provision needed to be made for their eventual replacement. The most promising development at UTS was the launch of an accelerated Master’s program for young Unification professionals. Much like in the earliest days of UTS, the Family Federation provided support for its young leaders to obtain Seminary degrees and become theologically and professionally equipped to represent the Unification tradition. A cohort of seven accelerated M.A. students entered the program in the Fall semester of 2018 and another seven in the Fall semester of 2019. They and cohorts to follow were envisioned as the nucleus of a new UTS. The Seminary Board also designated funds to support doctoral studies for the next generation of Unification scholars and faculty.
UTS made less progress in goals of establishing its presence in Greater New York and in leveraging its real property assets, i.e., the Barrytown campus, for financial viability. The two were connected. President Spurgin expended an extraordinary amount of effort attempting to achieve a final disposition of the Barrytown property, the costs of which had become unmanageable. This, in turn, detracted from the Seminary’s focus in New York where UTS offered the bulk of its academic program.
Relocation: The Seminary’s decision to relocate its main campus from Barrytown to New York City was painful because a decision to sell the Barrytown campus accompanied it. Shortly after becoming UTS President, Dr. Spurgin described the property as “sacred space.” He “pledged to do all that he could to preserve the Barrytown campus for posterity.” However, hard realities quickly presented themselves. A 2015 New York State fire and safety inspection cited ninety violations, the result of deferred maintenance, which cost nearly $200,000. The ongoing costs to maintain the property were more significant. In “The Seminary’s Next 40 Years: Economic Realities Facing UTS,” Dr. Spurgin reported,
Frankly, the Seminary cannot afford the expenditures required to manage the property. These costs, which include regular main-tenance, deferred maintenance, utilities, insurance and personnel, run more than $600,000 annually. Approximately $200,000 is offset by conferences and tenants. Such a large outlay is overwhelming for a small school that lacks a residential body of paying students in Barrytown. Aside from Doctor of Ministry students who meet twice a year for two-week intensives and Masters students who are required to take part in a single colloquium that meets on three Saturdays, the facility supports no UTS educational activity and there are no residential students.
For UTS, Barrytown has become a liability, not an asset. Funds spent for the upkeep of the property takes away from UTS being able to provide a strong academic program, which is our primary focus, including quality equipment for a strong online program, engaging noteworthy faculty, and giving scholarships to outstanding students.
In America, the future for UTS is in metropolitan areas where people live, work and study—and where students have easy access to classes… In order to prosper in these really tough times financially, UTS needs to reposition itself as an entrepreneurial, urban seminary with traditional classes and e-learning programs that relies on creative modes of delivery.
This presented a “major dilemma.” In Dr. Spurgin’s words, it was “to insure that UTS continues to be a vibrant and growing educational institution, while simultaneously finding a way to provide good stewardship of the Barrytown property.”
UTS went through a series of efforts to exercise stewardship of the Barrytown property while seeking to be a vibrant and growing educational institution. Dr. Spurgin began by launching a “40/40 Campaign” in July 2015, to commemorate the four decades since the inauguration of UTS in 1975 by asking UTS trustees, faculty and staff members, alumnae and alumni, and all UTS stakeholders to give $40 per month for 40 months. The immediate goal was to find 200 donors willing to commit to the 40/40 Campaign by September 20th, the anniversary of the Seminary’s opening convocation.
These efforts fell far short. The following year, Dr. Spurgin reported that donations from individuals accounted for only two percent of the Seminary’s revenue, 60 alumni out of more than 1,500 graduates. In 2018, he noted, “Donations were requested over and over, but in reality, they have been minimal.” Apart from donations, the Seminary administration explored setting up a conference center on the property and other endeavors such as “barn weddings” in the Seminary’s 19th century gray barn. However, recognition of major start-up costs in personnel and facility upgrades as well as implications for the Seminary’s property tax exemption stymied these efforts.
UTS next pursued joint ventures and partnerships. In a letter to alumni and friends, Dr. Spurgin stated, “Our administration has been actively searching for partners, who are interested in developing the property in line with our goals of eliminating the deficit and generating revenue; ensuring our ongoing access to the property; [and] preserving the property’s historic character and open space.”
A Manhattan developer solicited a major zoning study, spent 180 days investigating options, and submitted a joint venture development plan that was rejected by the Board because it required a substantial financial outlay that would only be recouped, if at all, over several decades. Dr. Spurgin noted, “[P]roperty development will require finding a partner who possesses the huge amount of financial resources that will need to be invested.” He was forced to admit, “After more than two years, we have been unable to find such a wealthy partner who is willing to invest enormous amounts of money in upgrading and maintaining the property.”
UTS took a different approach in developing an extension campus in Clinton, Maryland begun during the Panzer administration. Rather than address stewardship of Barrytown directly, the idea was to invigorate UTS enrollment by working cooperatively with Logos Christian College of Washington D.C., a non-accredited institution serving a network of African American Pentecostals in the Washington, D.C. area. Unfortunately, not unlike Barrytown College of UTS, the Maryland initiative was subject to financial and educational deficiencies. Despite increasing UTS enroll¬ment numbers, the Board voted to close the site in April 2018 in accordance with Maryland Higher Education Commission teach-out requirements.
In the end, Dr. Spurgin concluded that “the Seminary’s best partnership option for the development of the Barrytown property is with the sponsoring church.” He noted FFWPU had “invested tens of millions of dollars in UTS since its founding” and its “ongoing investment as a percentage of the UTS budget is significantly higher than the support other churches give annually to their denominational seminaries.” Yet there were still mis¬understand¬ings, especially when it came to funding Barrytown. In November 2017, the Seminary and Church joined in a short-lived partnership under the aegis of “A New Vision for UTS.” The vision was to reinstitute a residential program in Barrytown, to relinquish the interfaith model, and to become a Unification-based seminary. The UTS Board passed a resolution supporting the vision in December 2017. However, FFWPU leadership abandoned the initiative within two months once the cost of implementation became apparent.
Prior to the “new vision” initiative, the UTS Board approved a motion to list the Barrytown property for a full or partial lease. There were no takers. The Board then assembled on February 3, 2018 for some “difficult choices.” As Dr. Spurgin expressed it, “The issue becomes, does UTS keep the Barrytown property and lose UTS as an accredited institution?” He acknowledged, “The possibility of selling the Barrytown property is an emotional issue for many church members.” However, he argued, “UTS must continue as an institution and cannot be tied to one property.” Dr. Ki Hoon Kim, the Family Federation Continental Director, said that the sponsoring church no longer wanted to spend the amount required to maintain the main campus. After considerable soul-searching, the Board voted (10-1) to sell the Barrytown property for a minimum price of $15 million and relocate to New York City.
Dr. Spurgin broke the news to alumni and friends,
The UTS Board, which has fiduciary responsibility for the institution, came to this difficult decision with a heavy heart. Students and church members have sought to honor the tradition that our Founders established at Barrytown. Many of us have precious memories of this place where they trained us, fished with us, hiked with us, and spoke with us for many long hours. In our hearts, we will forever harbor the wonderful, magical experiences that we had there.
Yet it is poor stewardship to retain a huge building that is empty for most of the year. In reviewing the current situation, our trustees determined that it is best to invest the Seminary's limited resources to develop stronger academic programs.
He pointed out that Rev. Moon advised the Seminary not to create a logo with a silhouette of the main building at Barrytown because UTS “may relocate in the future” and that he had previously “approved plans for UTS to relocate, which did not materialize.” Dr. Spurgin noted, “For many decades, UTS sought numerous ways to generate income from the Barrytown property. We worked with FFWPU, reached out to alumni, even explored secular business uses, but all to no avail.” Sale of the Barrytown campus, he concluded, “will drive” the “next phase” of the Seminary’s development. He requested “love, support and prayers for our alma mater at this critical, transitional moment in its history.”
Over the next year, Dr. Spurgin threw himself into the property sale. He interviewed high end New York City brokerage firms, retained legal counsel specializing in commercial real estate transactions and involved himself directly in negotiations with interested parties as well as local town board officials and Scenic Hudson, an influential environmental non-profit with longstanding interest in the property. In the end, UTS was not able to obtain a written offer of $15 million. In January 2019, the UTS Board voted to sell the Barrytown property for the best price between $11.5 million and $15 million, with reasonable terms. In May, the Board voted to accept an offer on the property for $10.4 million. However, the Family Federation objected to selling it at that amount, holding to the original $15 million figure.
This put the property sale in limbo and Dr. Spurgin in a difficult position. To a large extent, he had staked his presidency on selling the Barrytown property and establishing an endowment to put UTS on a solid financial footing. For the previous year, his overriding focus was on the disposition of Barrytown and secondarily on the program in New York. Having failed to obtain an acceptable offer, his educational leadership was questioned. With staff support, he had restored the Seminary’s accreditation, rebuilt trust with the Family Federation, and had UTS on the verge of obtaining approval for its first fully-online degree program. Nevertheless, there was sentiment that UTS required a leader whose energy and expertise focused primarily, if not exclusively on its educational program. On May 26, 2019, Dr. Spurgin submitted a letter to the Board in which he agreed “to step down as President of UTS whenever a new president is chosen.”
Dr. Spurgin’s notice followed approval by Middle States and the New York Board of Regents’ for the Seminary to relocate its main campus to New York City. That action brought to a close its Barrytown years or at least the years during which Barrytown served as the UTS main campus. However, Barrytown remained in the Seminary’s hands. This meant that disposition of the property would carry over into the next phase of the Seminary’s history.
The UTS Board of Trustees appointed Dr. Thomas Ward the Seminary’s sixth President on July 9, 2019. He assumed the position on August 8. A 1981 graduate of UTS, Dr. Ward came to UTS from the University of Bridgeport where he served as Dean of the College of Public and International Affairs from 2000-2018. Dr. Ward’s background and skill-set fit the profile of what the Board sought in the next UTS President. Having extensive experience in program development and recruitment, the College of Public and International Affairs at the University of Bridgeport grew from less than 40 to 479 students during his tenure. The College produced ten student and faculty Fulbright awardees; sent graduates to programs at Harvard, Yale, Johns Hopkins, Oxford, Columbia, Cornell, Georgetown, and UC Berkeley among other graduate institutions; and won more than twenty National Model UN team awards over the past decade. He was the recipient of a Fulbright scholarship in France and a visiting scholar in both Mainland China and in Taiwan. In announcing the appointment, UTS Board Chair Rev. Franco Famularo expressed confidence that Dr. Ward’s “skills and accomplishments are transferable to UTS.”
In accepting the Board appointment, Dr. Ward defined himself as a “change-agent” and identified two areas of focus. The first of these was a “mandate” to “mainstream” and “contextualize” Unificationism. For Dr. Ward, this required a sea-change in the Seminary’s self-understanding, specifically a shift away from the model of UTS as “the interfaith seminary.” In reviewing “Phases of UTS Life,” Dr. Ward noted,
[F]rom its founding in 1975 through the mid-1990s, UTS was a place to prepare Unification leaders. From the mid-1990s until 2012, UTS expanded to serve as an Interfaith Seminary. From 2012-2015, the Seminary experimented with an undergraduate college followed by a return to its identity as an Interfaith Seminary… there is now a call from the Family Federation for UTS to re-affirm its original mission.
Dr. Ward convened a working group to review the UTS mission statement and announced that the Seminary would undertake a year-long program prioritization in line with the vision of UTS as a “home of thought” for the Unification community. He highlighted the need to build “UTS pride.”
Dr. Ward stated his other major emphasis would be “helping to identify and prepare a new generation of UTS leadership.” He said he envisioned himself serving “only two or three years” and “to have a core of young, next generation leaders in place at least on the administrative side by fall 2021 at the earliest and by fall 2022 at the latest.” Dr. Ward, like Dr. Spurgin, came to UTS following a distinguished career as a Unification leader and educator. Both viewed themselves as bridge Presidents. Dr. Ward acknowledged that by the end of his tenure, next generation leaders “will not, most likely, have terminal degrees in hand but they can be well on their way to achieving them, while also fulfilling the important administrative tasks that they would have within UTS.” His first hire was a next generation Assistant to the President and Director of Special Events.
Dr. Ward also emphasized that UTS should forget Rev. Moon’s dream to create a University in the United States. That, of course, was not realized through Barrytown College of UTS. It also was not achieved through the University of Bridgeport which in 2019 expunged “any reference to the Professors World Peace Academy or Unification Church” from its bylaws. In addition to furthering the mission and work of UTS, Dr. Ward felt committed to “further the groundwork for a University… on the foundation of the Seminary.” Whether that meant a future for the Barrytown property was an open question. Dr. Ward was an advocate of “massive open online courses” (MOOCs) and admired edX, a MOOC provider created by MIT and Harvard University in 2012 with over 16 million students taking more than 2,200 online courses online as of December 2018. It may be that a Unification university in the United States would come into being and operate via an online platform rather than a physical campus.
As of this writing, the Barrytown property remains on the market. Though the facility operates at a substantial loss, revenue from conference use and educational/recreational programs for church youth have increased nearly 300 percent since 2015 from $113,000 to $277,000 in FY 2018-19. The sponsoring church directed representatives from its Office of Business investment and Asset Development (OBIAD) to study the property and make recommendations. UTS continues to utilize the Barrytown campus for its Doctor of Ministry program. Faculty and staff residing in the area continue to use office space. At the same time, iconic features of the campus have already or will soon disappear. In 2015, the 100-year old stained glass windows in the main chapel were removed and replaced by double-paned, argon gas filled, segmented, asbestos-free windows as part of a $700,000 project financed by the De La Salle Christian Brothers who wanted the depictions of New Testament themes and their order’s founder for the chapel of Manhattan College in New York City. The main library collection, more than 40,000 volumes which cannot fit in the Seminary’s New York location, was being shipped to Sun Moon University and Sunhak Universal Peace Graduate University in Korea, both of which have need of English language works. The former collection space may be utilized for a Family Federation national archive.
Change has characterized the Barrytown property from its aboriginal inhabitants to its Dutch patroon manors, English estate owners, American patriots and merchants, Christian Brother educators, Unification Church missionaries and UTS seminarians. The Seminary exercised stewardship over the property during its eventful Barrytown years. Those years, in turn, created a legacy from which the Seminary can draw sustenance and extract lessons.
UTS Presidents and their administrations, who occupy the central place in this account, pursued their understandings of UTS and its mission with great passion and sincerity. Yet, each of them was dislodged by changed circumstances and altered priorities. The rise and fall of presidential administrations, constant monetary struggles, and conflict with the sponsoring church might lead to a demoralizing conclusion. That would be a mistake. More crucial than any crises or perils UTS faced were the resources it possessed for change and forward development. Perils and crises unlocked capacities for renewal. The Seminary’s Barrytown years are a testament to the vitality and adaptability of UTS as an institution.
 A January 15, 1993 study of “UTS Graduates Mission Assignments” showed that the vast bulk of the Church’s campus ministry, social service/community action and interfaith personnel as well as significant numbers of overseas missionaries were Seminary graduates. In addition, more than 50 graduates were serving the Church as “city leaders” and 30 as “state leaders” in the U.S. The President and Vice-President of the Unification Church in America and the President of the Church in Japan were Seminary graduates. Additional graduates were involved in the movement’s journalistic endeavors; 40 alone were associated with The Washington Times and allied projects. Twenty were listed as pursuing further graduate study. Seventeen were employed as faculty or administrators at the Seminary. Although not indicating performance, the placements indicated a close association between the Seminary’s educational program and the assumption of leadership roles in the Church. (Unification Theological Seminary. Institutional Self Study, 1995, p. 17) A study in 2000 detailed graduates’ leadership in the movement’s inter-religious dialogue, work to overcome the scourge of communism, and address the problems of youth immorality and family breakdown. (Tyler Hendricks, “God’s Tylenol,” October 4, 2000 https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Talks/Hendricks/Hendricks-001004.htm. A 2011 submission to the New York State Education Department stated that 92% of the leadership of the sponsoring denomination in the US were UTS graduates. (Unification Theological Seminary. Master Plan Amendment Supplement, 2011). Currently, the head of Sun Moon University, FFWPU Japan, UPF Japan, and the heads of FFWPU and UPF Europe and the Middle East are UYS graduates as are key leaders in Central and Latin America. The chair of YSP, the head of UPF international and the heads of practically every major organization - PWPA, ACLC, UPF USA, and many more are UTS graduates as are heads of African missions, Four of five U.S. sub-regional directors are either UTS graduates or in UTS degree programs.
 Before he could sign the final version of the Declaration, Livingston was recalled by his state. However, he sent his cousin, Philip Livingston, to sign the document in his place. Another cousin, William Livingston, would go on to sign the United States Constitution.
 Lamb, Martha. The Homes of America. NY: Appleton & Co., 1879, p. 171. Cited in Lorna Skaaren. Barrytown, New York: A Brief Social and Commercial History. Thesis Project. Bard College, 1983, p.8.
 Lamb, p. 171.
 Chanler, Margaret Livingston. Memoirs of Rokeby. Washington, D.C., May 1900, p. 9. Cited in Skaaren, p. 9.
 In “Theodore Roosevelt—the first “Greenman” (The Barrytown Gazette June 2008), Henry Christopher (UTS’82) wrote, “Considering Roosevelt’s intense love of nature which was nurtured during his stay here, Barrytown might legitimately be called the place where the Green Movement began, 140 years ago.”
 Thompson, Henry, and Therese Stewart. “The Unification Theological Seminary.” In Henry O. Thompson, ed. Unity In Diversity - Essays in religion by members of the faculty of the Unification Theological Seminary. Barrytown, NY: Unification Theological Seminary, 1984, p. 426.
 Skaaren, p. 43.
 “Conversation with six De La Salle Christian Brothers.” https://glc.yale.edu/conversation-six- de-la-salle-christian-brothers
 District of Eastern and North America (DENA) of the Brothers Christian Schools. “The Historic District of New York.” https://www.fscdena.org/who-we-are/history/legacy-districts/new-york/
 Stewart, Therese. “The History of the Seminary.” Unpublished manuscript. October 1975. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Talks/Stewart/Stewart-751000.pdf
 Moon, Sun Myung. “Unification Theological Seminary Inaugural Convocation Speech.” Barrytown, NY. September 20, 1975. https://www.tparents.org/Moon-Talks/SunMyungMoon75/SunMyungMoon-750920a.pdf
 Kim, David S.C. “The Establishment of H.S.A. (Holy Spirit Association) and My Role as One of the Original Participants.” July 1970, pp. 99-100. https://www.tparents.org/Library/ Unification/Talks/Dkim/dKim-700700.htm
 Conflated from two separate testimonies: Kim, David S.C. “The Establishment of H.S.A. (Holy Spirit Association) and My Role as One of the Original Participants.” July 1970, p. 104; and Kim, David S.C. “My Early Days in the Unification Church.” Today’s World, January 1885, p. 24.
 Yoo, Kwang Yol. "A History of the Unification Church from the Early Days," New Hope News, January 6, 1976.
 See Denis Collins. “The Best Teachers I Ever Had… Were at the Unification Theological Seminary.” Teaching Business Ethics, 1999; 3, 3; ProQuest Central.
 Quebedeauz, Richard, and Rodney Sawatsky, eds. Evangelical-Unification Dialogue. Conference series no. 3. Barrytown, NY: Unification Theological Seminary, 1979. https://www.tparents.org/UTS/Evan-Dia/0-Toc.htm
 Bryant, Darrol, ed. Proceedings of the Virgin Islands’ Seminar on Unification Theology. Conference series no. 6. Barrytown, NY: Unification Theological Seminary, 1980. https://www.tparents.org/UTS/VIsem/0-Toc.htm
 For a listing of books published by UTS and New Era from 1978-84, see Michael L. Mickler. The Unification Church in America: A Bibliography and Research Guide. NY: Garland, 1987, pp. 94-100. https://www.tparents.org/UTS/UC-Biblio/UC-Biblio.pdf
 Smith, Huston. “This Religious Moment.” Plenary Address. God: The Contemporary Discussion, Seoul, Korea. August 11, 1984. http://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/ Talks/Smith/Smith-840811.htm
 Meislin, Richard J. “Albany Senate Bids Regents Delay Certification of Moon's Seminary.” The New York Times, March 23, 1977, p. 22.
 Warder v. Board of Regents. Court of Appeals of the State of New York, 53 N.Y.2d 186, June 11, 1981.
 Unification Theological Seminary. Institutional Self-Study. February 1995, p. 5.
 Tanabe, Jennifer. “Unification Theological Seminary Receives Absolute Charter.” January 17, 1990. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Talks/Dkim/dKim-900117.htm.
 Leal, Bento. “Genesis of Father's Carp net-fishing at Barrytown.” October 15, 2015. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Talks/Leal/Leal-151015.pdf.
 Mickler, Mike. “Dr. David S.C. Kim 90th Birthday National Celebration - A General Never Dies or Fades Away But Prays Continually for Kingdom-Building on Earth.” November 5, 2005. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Talks/Mickler/Mickler-051130.htm
 Mickler, Mike. “Seonghwa Testimony: David S.C. Kim.” November 10, 2011.
 Unification Theological Seminary. Student Handbook. 1993-94, p. 6.
 UTS was granted authority to issue student F-1 visas in 1986 after obtaining its provisional charter.
 At the time of the Seminary’s initial accreditation, Middle States Association listed 14 “Characteristics of Excellence”: Mission and Goals; Planning, Resource Allocation, and Institutional Renewal; Institutional Resources; Leadership and Governance; Administration; Integrity; Institutional Assessment; Student Admissions and Retention; Student Support Services; Faculty; Educational Offerings; General Education; Related Educational Activities; and Assessment of Student Learning.
 See Michael L. Mickler. “The Seminary Vocation.” Unification News, January 1999, 14-15. https://www.tparents.org/UNews/PDF/Unws9901.pdf
 Moon, Sun Myung. “The First Jardim Declaration (New Hope Farm Declaration): Absolute Faith, Absolute Love and Absolute Obedience.” April 3, 1995. https://www.tparents.org/Moon-Talks/SunMyungMoon95/SunMyungMoon-950403a.pdf
 Davies, Gareth. “MSA Team Impressed: ’Extraordinary commitment’ and ‘remarkable dedication’ at UTS.” The Cornerstone, November 1996. https://www.tparents.org/library/unification/publications/cornerst/cs9611/2.html.
 Kim, Jin Choon. “12 Korean Regional leaders in UTS.” Unification News, November 1994. https://www.tparents.org/UNews/unws9411/UTS-03.htm. Rev. Moon told them that after they graduate, “I will assign you as leaders educating members of six continents.”
 “Academic Report.” Minutes. UTS Board of Trustees, October 24, 1994, p. 4. Dr. Jennifer Tanabe reported that 178 students was “the highest number we’ve ever had.”
 In 1996-97, of the new students entering UTS, 47 were from Japan, 7 from Korea, none form the U.S., two from the Philippines, three from Africa, and three from Western and Easter Europe. UTS Institutional Self-Study, February 2002, p. 99.
 Moon, Sun Myung. “State Leaders Meeting at East Garden April 27, 1998.” https://www.tparents.org/Moon-Talks/SunMyungMoon98/Um980427.htm
 Kotegawa, Susumu. “My Path to UTS.” April 1999. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Talks/Kotegawa/Kotegawa-UTS.htm
 Wilson, Andrew. “From the Editor.” Journal of Unification Studies. Volume I (1997), p. 2. https://www.journals.uts.edu/volume-i-1997/2-from-the-editor
 Shimmyo, Theodore, and David Carlson, eds. Explorations in Unificationism. New York: HAS-UWC, 1997. 301 pp.
 Rev. Moon coined the designations, “Book One” and “Book Two” of UTS. See Moon, Sun Myung. “Rev. Sun Myung Moon Speaks to Unification Theological Seminary.” The Cornerstone. Spring-Summer, 1994, p. 15
 Mickler, Michael. “UTS 18th Annual Commencement Exercises.” Unification News, July 1994. https://www.tparents.org/UNews/unws9407/UTS-MICK.htm
 “Take God’s Problems on Your Shoulders.” The Cornerstone, September-October, 1997. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Publications/CornerSt/CS970910/Stone6.html
 During President Shimmyo’s tenure, the Student Handbook (1998-99) stated, “In order to allow students to focus on their spiritual and academic development, the administration discourages students from bringing their families to the Seminary or settling them close to campus.” (p. 31)
 See “In Search of the Origin of the Universe.” Pp. 566-74 in Michael L. Mickler. Forty Years in America: An Intimate History of the Unification Movement, 1959-1999. New York, HSA-UWC, 2000. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Books/40Years/40-6-22.htm
 As reported in the Seminary’s February 2002 Institutional Self-Study, President Shimmyo “utilized a required, non-credit Senior Colloquium class, since discontinued, which he taught to disqualify students whom he judged to be unqualified for mission work by giving them a no-pass for the course.” (p. 19)
 Shimmyo, Theodore. “Experiencing the Heart of Father in South America. The Cornerstone, July-August 1997. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Publications/CornerSt/cs970708/CST_Heart.html
 Mickler. Forty Years in America, p. 496. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/ Books/40Years/40-6-22.htm
 Mickler, Michael. “Battle for the Americas.” Journal of Unification Studies. Vol. 14 (2013), https://www.journals.uts.edu/volume-xiv-2013/214-battle-for-the-americas#a61
 Minutes. President’s Cabinet, November 6, 1998.
 Dr. Shimmyo recently recalled, “What happened was that Mr. Park suddenly told me at the end of October 1998 that TF [“True Father,” i.e. Rev. Moon] was planning to cut the financial help for UTS entirely… The idea of total cut was already in the mind of TF, who told me that the money for UTS must be shifted to the providence in South America. I may have written a letter to TF, but it did not cause him to entirely cut the help, which had already been planned.” Personal correspondence. August 12, 2019.
 Endowment usage – From MSA Follow-up Report on Financial viability, 3/2001
 Hendricks, Tyler. Family, Church, Community, Kingdom: Building a Witnessing Church for Working Families. New York: HSA-UWC, 2000. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Books/FCCK/0-Toc.htm
 Unification Theological Seminary. Institutional Self-Study. February 2002, p. 100.
 UTS Catalog, 2000-2001, p. 13.
 The Holy Spirit Association for the Unification of World Christianity. “Corporate Resolution.” December 6, 2001. Michael Jenkins. “Letter of Guarantee.” February 22, 2002. These documents are included in the UTS Institutional Self-Study. 2002. Appendix C
 Those listed were living for others, family, quality, mature faith, respect for diversity and ownership.
 Hendricks, Tyler. “President’s Letter: Core Values.” UTS Cornerstone - A Newsletter for the UTS Alumni Association, March 2005. https://www.tparents.org/Library/ Unification/Publications/CornerSt/Cornerstone-050300/1.htm
 Unification Theological Seminary. Institutional Self-Study. February 2002, 118.
 Hendricks, Tyler. “Building Relationships - Learning What Matters.” E-Cornerstone, December 15, 2003. https://www.tparents.org/library/unification/talks/hendrcks/Hendricks-031215.htm
 “President’s report.” Minutes. UTS Board of Trustees, October 8, 2001.
 Hendricks, Tyler. “God’s Tylenol.” October 4, 2000. https://www.tparents.org/Library/ Unification/Talks/Hendrcks/Hendricks-001004.htm
 Hendricks, Tyler. “An Interfaith Movement and Its Seminary. Journal of Unification Studies 8 (2007), p. 1.
 “UTS Board of Trustees Retreat.” October 8, 2006, p. 4.
 “UTS Board of Trustees Retreat.” October 8, 2006, p. 7.
 Divine Principle. NY: HSA-UWC, 1973, p. 188
 Reinig, Laura. “The Assembly of World's Religions.” Today’s World, January-February 1986, 32. 1986. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Publications/TodaysWorld/TodaysWorld-86/TodaysWorld-8601_02.pdf
 Tyler Hendricks, “UTS 25th Commencement,” Unification News, July 2001, p. http://www.tparents.org/UNews/Unws0107/ UTS_report.htm.
 Moon, Sun Myung. “God's Ideal Family - the Model for World Peace.” Keynote Address. Inaugural Convocation of the Universal Peace Federation, September 12, 2005. https://www.tparents.org/Moon-Talks/SunMyungMoon05/SunMyungMoon-050912.htm
 Moon, Sun Myung. “A Providential View of the Pacific Rim Era in Light of God’s Will.” Unification News, May 2007, p. 3. https://www.tparents.org/UNews/Unws0705a.pdf
 Moon, Hyun Jin. “One Family Under God.” Cheon Il Guk Leaders Assembly, Chung Pyung, Korea, February 25, 2007. https://www.tparents.org/Moon-Talks/HyunJinMoon/ HyunJinMoon-070225a.htm; “Activities and Future Directions.” Abridged Report, September 2007. https://www.tparents.org/Moon-Talks/HyunJinMoon/HyunJinMoon-070900.htm
 “New Mission Statement.” Minutes. UTS Board of Trustees, March 26-28, 2008.
 Douglas Johnston was the author of Religion: The Missing Dimension of Statecraft (1995) and Faith-Based Diplomacy: Trumping Realpolitik (2008). The goal of recruiting 155 students from diverse religions was stated in the Seminary’s 2007-2012 strategic plan, “Equipping People of Faith to be Interreligious Peacebuilders,” p. 4.
 Hendricks, Tyler. “An Interfaith Movement and Its Seminary.” Journal of Unification Studies 8 (2007), 1-24. https://www.journals.uts.edu/volume-viii-2007/76-an-interfaith-movement-and-its-seminary
 See Michael L. Mickler. “The Great Jubilee Years 2007-08: A Transition Period in Unification Movement History.” Journal of Unification Studies 16 (2015), 147-184; and “Battle for the Americas.” Journal of Unification Studies 14 (2013), 76-106.
 When Hyun Jin Moon attempted to convene a Board meeting of HSA-UWC USA to oust his sister, he was prevented from doing so by a 6-5 vote to terminate the meeting at Rev. Moon’s request. Dr. Hendricks was one of those who voted with Hyun Jin Moon to continue the meeting. Rev. Moon subsequently requested that the board members who sided with Hyun Jin be notified that they should resign not only from the board but from all public positions. He later rescinded that request “because they came forward and united with him by resigning.”
 “Tyler Hendricks to James Borer and Farley Jones.” May 6, 2010.
 See Michael Mickler, “The Post-Sun Myung Moon Unification Church.” Pp. 47-63 in Eileen Barker, ed., Revisionism and Diversification in New Religious Movements. Farnham, UK: Ashgate, 2013.
 Shimmyo, Theodore. “Experiencing the Heart of Father in South America.” The Cornerstone, July 8, 1997. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Publications/ CornerSt/cs970708/Heart-Father.html
 Hauer, Josephine.”2010 Barrytown College Survey.” July 6, 2010. Hauer reported that 65% of respondents indicated that they were “definitely interested” or “interested” in the college.
 “Proposal to State Education Department, New York State for Bachelor of Arts Degree Program with a Major in World Religions and Philosophy.” November 2011.
 Holt, Eric to State Education Department. July 2, 2012.
 Panzer, Richard. “Barrytown College to Open Undergraduate Program at Unification Theological Seminary.” April 3, 2012. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/ Talks/ Panzer/ Panzer-120403.pdf
 Cited in Michael Mickler, “Continuity and Innovation: The Last years of Rev. Moon’s Ministry.” Journal of Unification Studies 15 (2014), 27-50
 Hoover, Chad. “Open Letter to UTS Board.” October 28, 2013
 Balcomb, Michael. “A Letter from the President: The Status of UTS.” December 18, 2014. https://www.tparents.org/library/unification/talks/Balcomb-14/Balcomb-141218.pdf
 Panzer, Richard. “Does Barrytown College & UTS Have a Future?” October 25, 2013. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Talks/Panzer/Panzer-131025.pdf
 Panzer, Richard. “The Future of Barrytown College/UTS Survey Results.” November 2013. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Talks/Panzer/Panzer-131100.pdf
 Balcomb, Michael and Richard Panzer. “Joint Statement to American Unification Movement by UTS Board Chair & President.” https://www.tparents.org/Library/ Unification/Talks/Panzer/Panzer-131031.pdf
 Panzer, Richard. “7 Steps towards the Future of Barrytown/UTS.” November 8, 2013. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Talks/Panzer/Panzer-131108.pdf
 Panzer, Richard. “Auspicious Signs for 2014!” December 30, 2013. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Talks/Panzer/Panzer-131230.pdf
 Panzer, Richard. “Does Barrytown College & UTS Have a Future?” October 25, 2013. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Talks/Panzer/Panzer-131025.pdf
 “Committee on Trustees Report.” Minutes. UTS Board of Trustees, May 24, 2014.
 Balcomb, Michael, and Richard Panzer. “UTS and the June 21 meeting of the HSA-UWC Board of Directors,” June 25, 2014. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Talks/ Panzer/Panzer-140626.pdf. Balcomb and Panzer referred to “the promising recruitment results for the entering Fall 2014 class at the college” and the church board’s expectation of “roughly twice as many new students as from the first year’s class,” which had been twenty.
 “Finance Committee Report.” Minutes. UTS Board of Trustees, May 24, 2014.
 Panzer, Richard. “Overview of UTS/Barrytown Current Situation,” December 15, 2013; “The Future of Barrytown Survey,” December 31, 2014.
 “Finance Committee Report.” Minutes. Special Meeting. UTS Board of Trustees, April 10, 2014.
 “Update on UTS Financials.” Minutes. President’s Cabinet, October 10, 2014.
 “Betty Coughlin to Richard Panzer.” December 26, 2013. See also Hugh Spurgin. “An Open Letter to UTS Alumni and Friends,” February 2, 2015. https://www.tparents.org/ Library/Unification/Talks/Spurgin/Spurgin-150202.pdf
 Middle States Association Commission on Higher Education. “Accreditation Actions.” Unification Theological Seminary, June 26, 2014. https://www.msche.org/institution/ 0718/
 “Chair Report.” Minutes. UTS Board of Trustees, October 13, 2014.
 “Michael Mickler to Michael Balcomb.” Email correspondence. December 7, 2014.
 Graham, Robin. “HSA's Financial Gun to UTS’s Head: We Will CUT OFF ALL FUNDING Next Month, If You Don’t Agree to Our Demands.” December 12, 2014. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Talks2/Graham/Graham-141211.pdf
 Graham, Robin. “3 UTS Trustees on Dr. Panzer's Offer of Resignation.” January 1, 2015. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Talks2/Graham/Graham-150101.pdf
 Board Minutes. Unification Theological Seminary, January 7, 2015.
 Unification Theological Seminary. Institutional Self-Study. February 2014, p. 24.
 Spurgin, Hugh. “An Open Letter to UTS Alumni and Friends.” February 2, 2015. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Talks/Spurgin/Spurgin-150202.pdf
 Spurgin, Hugh. “Sobering news about the future of Barrytown College.” March 29, 2015. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Talks/Spurgin/Spurgin-150319.pdf
 Hoover, Chad, Amy Cuhel-Schuckers and Katie Zahedi. “Why We Are Resigning - The Difference between a Good-faith and a Bad-faith Effort.” April 11, 2015. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Talks/Hoover/Hoover-150411.pdf
 Middle States Commission on Higher Education. Report to the Faculty, Administration, Trustees, Students of Unification Theological Seminary. April 2014, pp. 5-7.
 Unification Theological Seminary. Monitoring Report to the Middle States Commission on Higher Education. March 1, 2015.
 Spurgin, Hugh. “UTS Accreditation Problems Are Over.” July 6, 2017. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Talks/Spurgin/Spurgin-170706.pdf
 Spurgin, Hugh. “UTS@40: UTS has been building bridges.” July 28, 2015. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Talks/Spurgin/Spurgin-150728.pdf
 Tanabe, Jenifer. “Report on UTS Distance Learning Survey.” February 2017; “Report on UTS Distance Learning Survey to Europeans.” March 2017; “Report on UTS Distance Learning Survey to Americans.” May 2017; “Summary Report on UTS DL Surveys to UC Leaders.” N.d.
 UTS met its performance targets of an average of 15 students enrolled in eight fully-online courses offered over four semesters with an average of more than 12 students successfully completing each course and a student satisfaction rate of nearly 90 percent on a scale of 1-4.
 “Finance Committee.” Board Minutes. Unification Theological Seminary, May 26, 2018.
 Burton, Doug. “Hugh Spurgin on the future direction of UTS.” May 24, 2015. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Talks/Spurgin/Spurgin-150524.pdf
 Spurgin, Hugh. “The Seminary’s Next 40 Years: Economic Realities Facing UTS,” May 26, 2016.
 Spurgin, Hugh. “UTS@40: UTS has been building bridges.” July 28, 2015. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Talks/Spurgin/Spurgin-150728.pdf
 Spurgin, Hugh. “Unification Theological Seminary President's Letter to Alumni and Friends of UTS.” February 7, 2017
 “President’s Report.” Board Minutes. Unification Theological Seminary. February 3, 2018. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Talks/Spurgin/Spurgin-170207.pdf
 Spurgin, Hugh. “Letter to UTS Alumni/ae and Friends: Barrytown Campus and UTS Online.” October 19, 2017. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Talks/ Spurgin/Spurgin-171019.pdf
 Unification Theological Seminary, Monitoring Report to the Middle States Commission on Higher Education. September 1, 2016, pp. 7-8.
 Spurgin, Hugh. “Meetings of UTS alumni at New York City campus about the future of Barrytown.” November 9, 2016. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/ Talks/Spurgin/Spurgin-161109a.pdf
 Spurgin, Hugh. “News about Barrytown - Selling UTS’s Barrytown Campus.” May 14, 2018. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Talks/Spurgin/Spurgin-180514.pdf
 Spurgin. “News about Barrytown - Selling UTS’s Barrytown Campus.” May 14, 2018.
 “Spurgin to Board of Trustees.” May 26, 2019.
 Famularo, Franco. “Dr. Hugh Spurgin Steps Down; Dr. Thomas Ward Appointed Sixth President of UTS.” August 8, 2019. https://uts.edu/news-and-events/673-dr-hugh-spurgin-steps-down-dr-thomas-ward-appointed-sixth-president-of-uts
 Mickler, Michael. “UTS Welcomes Dr. Thomas Ward.” August 26, 2019. https://uts.edu/news-and-events/677-uts-welcomes-dr-thomas-ward
 “Thomas Ward to Dr. Kihoon Kim, Rev. Demian Dunkley, Chairman Franco Famularo, and Members of the UTS Board of Trustees.” July 12, 2019.
 Lambeck, Linda Conner. “UB, Unification Church split approved by all sides.” Connecticut Post, May 30, 2019. https://www.ctpost.com/local/article/UB-Unification-Church-split-approved-by-all-sides-13902023.php
 “Thomas Ward to Members of the UTS Faculty and Administration.” August 12, 2019.
 “EdX’s 2018: Year in Review.” December 26, 2018. https://www.classcentral.com/ report/edx-2018-review/
 See Douglas Burton. “UTS Stained-Glass Windows Given a New Home.” April 15, 2015. https://www.tparents.org/Library/Unification/Talks/Burton/Burton-150415.pdf