One foot in the classroom and one foot in the locker room. Advanced theological training to engage the people and culture of sports in an authentic Christian community.
Truett Seminary’s Sports Ministry Program sponsors graduate degrees that allow seminary students to develop a theologically-informed and practically-designed program of study that engages, appreciates, critiques, and connects with sports. We offer two different degree paths: a Certificate of Studies in Sports Ministry/Chaplaincy (MDiv) and a Concentration in Sports Ministry/Chaplaincy (MA).
Students in the Sports Ministry Program will:
- Cultivate theological competence and cultural literacy
- Interact with theological resources to interpret and to make their faith meaningful in sports
- Learn how to mentor, communicate, and integrate faith into sport as part of public life
- Develop leadership intelligence and skills
- Gain the specific knowledge and practices of Christian sports ministry that other forms of chaplaincy require for accreditation and certification purposes
- Learn how to live virtuously and work wisely in various contexts of sports ministry
"The sports ministry program gave me a lens through which I could see sports, zoomed out with a clearer perspective, filtered through Scripture and theology. It has impacted the way I build relationships in sports, view competitors/competition, and value the responsibility of coaching. Every day, through word and action, I notice that I have the chance to empower image bearers of God to authentically grow into who they were created to be."
—Dani Price, Assistant Softball Coach, Georgia Southern
"The sports ministry program is unique because it forces the student to apply the gospel story in ways that are critical to examining not only sports but society, life, and culture. During my time at Baylor there was no better opportunity for me to evaluate the intersectionality of faith, race, and class than through participating in the Sports Ministry Program. I am a better theologian and executioner of the biblical text because of my time in the program."
—Cameron Friend, Minister, Speaker, and Writer, Working for The King Center in Atlanta
"The sports ministry program at Truett was challenging but rewarding. I have been involved in sports, particularly in sports chaplaincy, all my adult life, but I felt I needed to experience the academic component. I'm glad I did it. Although I still serve many athletes, my focus now is on creating sports ministry/chaplaincy training materials and teaching in Portuguese- and Spanish-speaking countries."
—Arménio Anjos. Sports Chaplain, International Sports Ministries
Meet the Program Director
JOHN B. WHITE, PHD., is a native of the Midwest, and in particular, he is a Hoosier. One of his sports highlights came when he raced in the legendary cycling race "The Little 500" at Indiana University on Team Cutters (dramatized by the film Breaking Away). Along with his involvement with Team Cutters, John managed to make time for school, receiving a B.S. in Business with his favorite subject being Economics.
After college John sensed God's call to sports chaplaincy and ministry. His work included serving and ministering on various college campuses, at the Olympic Training Center, and in Europe. While serving in ministry, he also completed an M.Div. and an M.A. at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. He graduated summa cum laude for both of his graduate degrees.
John eventually moved with his wife Cindy and three children to Scotland to study moral theology and to earn a Ph.D. from The University of Edinburgh. After graduating, he came to Baylor University to assume the position of Harold and Dottie Riley Associate Professor of Practical Theology and Director of the Sports Chaplaincy Program. John’s publications have appeared in Sport, Ethics and Philosophy, Implicit Religion, Studies in Christian Ethics, Practical Theology, The Oxford Encyclopedia of Bible and Ethics, and he recently co-edited books with Routledge Press (2016, 2018), Cambridge Scholars, and Mercer Press (2017).
He is grateful to serve at a research university like Baylor University where his scholarship and leadership can integrate faith and sports in order to contribute to the transformation of the people and culture of sports.