In a statement released on Wednesday by the Pentecostal Theological Seminary to students, alumni and friends, Steven Jack Land announced his decision to transition from the Office of the President to a role as “teacher, author and consultant.”
The announcement comes as Land celebrates 37 years of full-time service to the Seminary as an instructor, 10 of which were served as academic dean before assuming the role of seminary president 12 years ago.
“The Church of God (Cleveland, Tenn.) is fortunate to have had Steve Land at the helm of our denomination’s seminary for 22 years,” said Mark Williams, general overseer and presiding bishop of the Church of God. “He (Land) is that rare combination of a true academician who is also an accomplished ministry leader and pastor ... he is regarded as a true statesman and premier spokesperson for the Pentecostal movement. Because of his leadership, I believe the future is bright for the Pentecostal Theological Seminary.”
Under Land’s leadership, the seminary has conferred degrees to more than 1,400 graduates as well as trained thousands of other individuals through seminars, workshops, and ministry clinics. In recent years, the seminary expanded its degree programs, and in the past year developed fully online degree offerings and certificate programs.
Four “centers” of global influence have also been developed over the past 12 years, including the Center for Pentecostal Theology, Center for Latino Studies, Center for Global Education and Mission, and the Center for Spiritual Leadership and Life-Long Learning.
Since 2002, the seminary has received more than $11 million in charitable giving, grown their endowments by more than $8 million, and partnered with various national and denominational organizations.
During Land’s tenure as president, there have been consistent positive evaluations by accreditation teams from the regional Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) and the national Association of Theological Schools in the U.S. and Canada (ATS). At its October meeting, the Pentecostal Theological Seminary Board gave unanimous affirmation of Land’s personal commitment to the seminary, his leadership through difficult times, and his vision for the future.
The president is quick to insist that what has been achieved was due to the providential work of God and a lot of hard work by the dedicated members of the board, administrative officers, faculty, staff, donors and church leaders.
Land has requested his new role begin after the 2014 General Assembly of the Church of God where the new president will be officially appointed. The Seminary Board will carry out the selection of the new president in consultation with the International Executive Committee of the Church of God. Land was appointed through a similar process in 2002 when he became the first president to be chosen from the ranks of the faculty.
The international leadership of the Church of God has asked Land to continue to be an international ambassador for Pentecostal faith and ministry. While thinking about his many years of service, Land shared that he and his wife, Peggy, are “thankful for the opportunities for ministry that God and the church have provided over these past years.” They look forward to a future of continued service.