Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary

Pictured above: Teaching during a pandemic
The seminary has adjusted its teaching during the pandemic as necessary. Here President Earle Treptow teaches a class outdoors in the seminary’s newly renovated courtyard in fall 2020. In spring 2020, the seminary held its graduation and call day online. Twenty-five graduates received diplomas for successfully completing their seminary studies and received calls into the ministry.

In fall 2020, Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary (WLS), Mequon, Wis., began the school year with 134 students. WLS prepares men to begin pastoral ministry by providing them with spiritual, theological, and professional training. Students attend classes for two years, serve as full-time vicars during their third year, and then attend classes and write a thesis in their fourth year. Throughout their time at the seminary, students receive opportunities to serve in a variety of ministries and to experience other cultures to help prepare them for their future calls.

The seminary also provides pastors with opportunities for continued growth in all their callings through its institute, Grow in Grace. Grow in Grace offers continuing education courses, a mentoring initiative for new graduates, a clearinghouse of resources for pastors, and an annual retreat for pastors who are celebrating milestones in their ministries.

The Pastoral Studies Institute, a partnership between WLS and WELS Missions, guides and assists non-traditional students through their pre-seminary and seminary training so they can become pastors. This includes second-career students as well as cross-cultural students.
For more information, visit wisluthsem.org.



Many seminary students participate in Winterim, a two-week session in between the first and second semesters that gives students an opportunity to study in areas of personal interest not normally part of the curriculum. Pictured is John Jordan, who worked on an outreach project at Living Faith, Midlothian, Texas, in January 2020. Jordan and 16 fellow students participated in street evangelism, interviewing, and data gathering, as well as worked on a strategic planning process that showed different ways to begin or enhance a congregation’s outreach. Part of the students’ work was to assemble and distribute almost 3,000 reusable totes for a local food drive and then collect the donations several days later.

Winterim provides a nice change of pace for both students and faculty,” says Rev. Earle Treptow, president of Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary. “Students who go on a mission trip—and almost every student will during their time at the seminary—gain invaluable experience in engaging the community. Those who participate come back with an increased commitment to preparing themselves for service as pastors.”

Dialogue Education Conference

Eighteen participants spreading God’s Word on five continents attended a Dialogue Education Conference hosted by the Pastoral Studies Institute. In partnership with WELS Missions, the Pastoral Studies Institute of Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary guides and assists spiritual leaders around the globe through their pre-seminary and seminary training.


Mission and Ministry 2020

Each winter Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary hosts an event titled Mission and Ministry for its students. During Mission and Ministry, students learn about the various ministries that exist throughout WELS for them to participate in and take advantage of as they need them. Ministries bring displays and information for students, and speakers from Home and World Missions as well as Congregational Services lead sessions on topics pertinent to them in their future ministries.

Did you know?

The seminary’s library has more than 58,000 books, and almost all of them are theological.