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Contact: Nicole Burdakin
Horwood donates one million for theological education
By Marcie Smeck
Lifelong United Methodist, Stan Horwood made a one million dollar gift to theological education in memory of his wife, Elizabeth. Horwood has designated the gift for theological students from the Rio Texas Conference who attend Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist University or Asbury Theological Seminary.
Horwood, son of a United Methodist pastor, said, “I fell in love with United Methodist education, first as an undergraduate student at Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas, and later at Perkins.” Circumstances caused Stan to drop out of Perkins after studying for a year and a half, and he then moved to Sterling City to be a part of the Elizabeth’s family’s ranching business.
“With deep gratitude, we announce this very significant gift to theological education. Stan and Elizabeth have been pillars, not only at First United Methodist Church in Sterling City but also in the district and their entire annual conference,” said Bishop James Dorff, resident bishop of the Rio Texas Annual Conference.
“I want to thank them on behalf of all the students in this annual conference who will benefit from their generosity,” Dorff continued. “Stan not only gave a very generous gift, but he took the opportunity to help send a message to others that theological education and training of leaders is so important to the church.”
The gift is split, $500,000 to the scholarship endowment at each school. Income from the endowments will provide scholarships to students from the Rio Texas Conference who are called to ministry and seek theological education. Horwood has asked that students be selected by each school’s scholarship committee based on need and demonstrated academic ability.
“What a great churchman Stan is; making this gift to the new conference shows he is aware of the strength in the connection and how he loves The United Methodist Church on every level,” said GBHEM General Secretary, Dr. Kim Cape.
Bishop Dorff also thanked Horwood on behalf of the GBHEM board of directors, where the Bishop is president of the board for this quadrennium. Cape thanked Horwood for offering GBHEM the opportunity to help him plan the gift, “and reclaim our roots as the General Board, promoting generosity towards theological education.”
The General Board of Higher Education & Ministry leads The United Methodist Church in educating, nurturing and preparing leaders for the church and the world.
Smeck is interim director, Office of Communications, General Board of Higher Education and Ministry