The early Christian apologist and catechist Tertullian once asked, "What does Jerusalem have to do with Athens?" His own answer was that they could have nothing to do with each other. He believed the city that stood as a symbol of faith could have nothing in common with the city that stood for learning.
In the early days of Valparaiso University, President O.P. Kretzmann offered a vision for the University's future and mission by answering Tetullian's question differently. He proposed that Valparaiso University become a place where Athens and Jerusalem could exist simultaneously. That vision remains a vital part of the University community's sense of identity and mission. It conveys a sense of the creative tension that exists where people attempt to live out a commitment to truth as it is understood in an ancient and rich religious tradition, while at the same time searching fearlessly for truth along paths on which the tradition does not specifically send them. Its historic commitment to the church and its strong commitments to both faith and learning provide Valparaiso University with an opportunity and a readiness to be of special service to a new world, a world characterized by constant change, technological development, and increasing interdependence of all nations and peoples.Return to: A Lutheran Look