Stories of Transformation


Nathaniel BoydMA (Biblical and Theological Studies), Class of 2017

Shortly after completing my undergraduate studies, I began working at a residential refuge in northern California called Christian Encounter Ministries, where struggling youth can receive counseling and discipleship. One day my boss and mentor told me graduate degrees are keys that open doors for ministry. Immediately I recognized the Lord prompting me to follow His guidance. As I began looking into seminaries, I felt drawn to the ministry culture of Western and its dedication to Gospel-centered transformation, starting with the lives of faculty and students.

From my first experiences on campus, the Western community exhibited a beautiful combination of knowledge, intelligence, humility, and love. It’s common to fi nd knowledge and intelligence at seminaries. But to see these accompanied by humility and love is far from common, and that combination is worth dedicating not just a few years, but a lifetime to pursuing.

My studies immediately began to influence my ministry. From helping anxious young people begin to discover answers to haunting questions about the brokenness of their souls and the faithfulness of God, to training our team of intern leaders to follow in the path of Jesus, to preaching from the pulpit; what I do and say has been shaped by what I learned at Western.

Recently I was appointed Director of Christian Encounter Ministries. As I’ve come to understand how insufficient I am for this, I’m very grateful for my mentor’s encouragement: graduate studies can do much more than unlock ministry doors; they can nurture the gospel-centered transformation that’s essential to be able to walk through them. I’m forever grateful God used Western to shape my heart, my mind, and my path through life.


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Western Seminary is an accredited graduate school founded in 1927. It offers trustworthy and accessible training for gospel-centered transformation at both the graduate credit and personal enrichment levels for those currently serving, or aspiring to serve, in key ministry leadership roles. The Western system consists of four campuses (Portland, OR; San Jose and Sacramento, CA; and Online) and a teaching site (Seattle, WA) that together serve approximately 950 credit students annually.