Christian Colleges in Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania is a state with a lot of history. It was one of the first thirteen colonies that started the United States. A big part of its history is about freedom, friendship, and letting people practice their religion without any trouble. William Penn, who started the state, was a Quaker, and he wanted to make sure everyone could worship in their own way. This cool history makes Pennsylvania a great place to learn about religion and how it shapes our lives.

Now, let’s talk about studying religion. It’s like opening a big treasure chest of knowledge. There’s a lot to explore, from understanding different beliefs to figuring out why people have followed them for so long. It’s not just about reading old books; it’s also about thinking deeply and learning how religion helps societies tick.

As you read through this article, think of it as a treasure map. We’re going to take you on an adventure through Christian colleges in Pennsylvania. These colleges are special places where you can learn a lot and also grow as a person. We hope this journey helps you find exciting things that make your brain happy and your heart full.

List of Christian Colleges in Pennsylvania

As we move along this compilation of Christian colleges, it’s essential to appreciate the diversity in size, programs, and environments. From the peaceful countryside to the dynamic urban areas, each college has a unique character and a set of offerings that cater to various preferences and career goals.

What binds these institutions together is a shared commitment to nurturing the whole person. Beyond the classroom, students are given opportunities to engage in community service, spiritual development, and other activities that foster personal growth and social responsibility.

One must not rush through this list, for it is more than just names and locations. Each college represents a potential path for students seeking a meaningful education grounded in Christian principles.

Messiah University (Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania)

Image from Messiah University’s official website

Tuition: The initial amount of financial aid received was $53,220, which decreased to $23,560 after considering all relevant assistance.

Graduation Rate:  79%

Acceptance Rate: 77%

Messiah University, situated in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, is a private Christian institution that has a reputation for delivering a holistic education rooted in Christian faith. With its religious affiliation to the Anabaptist, Pietist, and Wesleyan traditions of the Christian Church, Messiah University is committed to integrating faith and learning, aiming to prepare its students for service and leadership roles in both the church and society. 

Additionally, Messiah University is Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE) accredited, and various programs within the university also have specialized accreditation. For example, the School of Business, Education, and Social Sciences holds accreditation from the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP). 

In summary, Messiah University offers students a faith-based education, facilitated by a low student-faculty ratio, and holds accreditation that ensures the quality and integrity of its programs.

Admission Requirements

You can find information about admissions at Messiah College by visiting their website:

Courses Offered

Bachelor of Arts in Biblical and Religious Studies

The Biblical and Religious Studies program offers a selection of courses that effectively prepare students for careers in related fields. Through a combination of hands-on experiences and classroom learning within the context of Christian faith, students acquire the necessary skills and knowledge to achieve their goals. The program provides a diverse range of courses that not only enhance future career prospects but also foster a deeper understanding of the field of study.

While serving as a primary field of study, the Biblical and Religious Studies major also serves as an excellent complement to other departments for students seeking to be responsible members of the church and society. 

This university also has the flexibility of the BRS major, which allows students to pursue electives in other departments, opt for a double major, or even customize an individual major based on their personal career goals.

Bachelor of Arts in Christian Ministries and Leadership

In this program, you will delve into foundational Bible and theology courses while exploring various Bible texts in depth, including the Pentateuch, Historical Books, Poetical and Wisdom Literature, Gospels, Paul and His Letters, and Revelation. For those interested in missions, there are a range of courses available in missions training, world religions, and world Christianity.

Within the Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) Christian Ministries and Leadership program, we offer two concentrations: Community Engagement and Congregational Leadership. Additionally, there are numerous specialized courses available to enhance your learning experience.

Lancaster Bible College (Lancaster, Pennsylvania)

Image from Lancaster Bible College’s official website

Tuition: Initially, the average annual cost amounts to $41,924, but with aid factored in, the cost decreases to $22,475.

Graduation Rate:  70%

Acceptance Rate: 96%

Lancaster Bible College, located in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, is a private Christian institution deeply committed to providing education grounded in biblical principles. The college is interdenominational, which means that it does not align with a specific Christian denomination but instead embraces a diverse spectrum of Christian traditions and beliefs.

When it comes to accreditation, Lancaster Bible College is regionally accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE), ensuring the quality and integrity of its academic programs. 

Additionally, it holds accreditation from the Association for Biblical Higher Education (ABHE), which specifically attests to the college’s adherence to standards of excellence in biblical and theological education. Lancaster Bible College, through its interdenominational stance and dual accreditation, seeks to offer an academically sound and spiritually enriching environment to its students.

Admission Requirements

For information about undergraduate admissions, please visit the following website:

Courses Offered

Bachelor of Arts in Biblical Studies

With a total of 122 credits, the program follows a semester-based schedule lasting 16 weeks. The delivery method is traditional on-campus learning at the Lancaster campus.  As part of the bachelor’s degree program, students can also choose a minor that equips them with practical skills for their future lives and ministries beyond LBC.

The program emphasizes hands-on experience, offering internships and practicum requirements to apply classroom knowledge in professional settings. Additionally, students have the flexibility to select 40 credits from any professional department, enabling them to customize their training for various types of ministry.

Clarks Summit University (Clarks Summit, Pennsylvania)

Image from Clarks Summit University’s official website

Tuition: Before considering financial aid, the average annual cost of attendance amounts to $36,700. However, after applying financial aid, the cost significantly reduces to $15,633.

Graduation Rate: 75%

Acceptance Rate: 85%

Affiliated with the Baptist tradition, Clarks Summit University places a strong emphasis on integrating Christian faith and values into its academic programs, and it aims to equip students with the knowledge and skills necessary for service and leadership within the church and society. In terms of accreditation, Clarks Summit University is regionally accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE), which attests to the quality and rigor of its academic offerings. 

Moreover, the University’s seminary and several of its religious programs are accredited by the Association for Biblical Higher Education (ABHE), reflecting the institution’s commitment to excellence in theological and ministerial education. Clarks Summit University, through its Baptist affiliation and credible accreditation, strives to provide an education that is both academically robust and rooted in Christian values.

Admission Requirements

To explore admissions information, please visit the following website:

Courses Offered

Bachelor of Science in Bible and Theology 

Discover the educational experience at CSU and the valuable skills and knowledge you will acquire. With small class sizes and dedicated professors who are invested in your growth, you’ll receive not only a quality academic education but also guidance in discipleship to equip you for life beyond college. 

As a Bible and Theology student, you will have the opportunity to immerse yourself in the study of God’s Word. Through in-depth exploration, you’ll learn to investigate the Bible using the original biblical language of Greek. This program offers dual-enrolled classes with master’s programs at Baptist Bible Seminary, allowing you to engage in advanced theological studies.

The program provides flexibility for you to pursue your specific interests and goals. With over 50 credits of elective studies, you can gain specialized skills that align with your career aspirations. Furthermore, the Bible and Theology degree offers high credit transferability, enabling you to seamlessly continue your studies if you have prior college credits.

Bachelor of Science in Pastoral Ministries 

For those interested in the Pastoral Ministries Degree, you’ll have the chance to study and teach the Word of God. Through effective Bible study skills and an in-depth exploration of the biblical language of Greek, you’ll develop a solid understanding of Scripture to effectively communicate its message. 

The program also emphasizes reaching out to the world around you. You’ll learn from experienced professors who have served in teaching and local church ministries, gaining practical ministry experience and mentorship.

Highlights of the program include gaining experience through preaching at a local church and the opportunity to earn academic credit through a summer apprenticeship program. Additionally, the Pastoral Ministries Degree will prepare you for further academic studies, such as pursuing seminary education at institutions like Baptist Bible Seminary.

Grove City College (Grove City, Pennsylvania)

Image from Grove City College’s official website

Tuition: After considering grants and scholarships from the institution, state, and federal governments, the average annual cost for attendance amounts to $31,840.

Graduation Rate:  83%

Acceptance Rate: 73%

While not directly affiliated with a specific denomination, the college maintains a strong commitment to the Christian faith, particularly to the teachings of the Reformed tradition. It aims to encourage intellectual, moral, and spiritual development within its students, integrating Christian perspectives into all areas of study. 

The Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE) has regionally accredited Grove City College, which attests to the institution’s commitment to upholding high academic standards and constant improvement. This accreditation guarantees that other colleges, universities, and employers will widely recognize the degrees and credits that students have earned.

Admission Requirements

For admissions and financial aid information, please visit the following website:

Courses Offered

Bachelor of Arts in Biblical and Religious Studies

Grove City College offers a Bachelor of Arts degree in Christian Ministries, providing a comprehensive program to prepare students for a life of service in building the Kingdom of God. Under the guidance of renowned faculty, students explore Scripture and learn to apply biblical principles, developing wisdom, boldness, and humility to share the love of Christ with others. The program equips students for non-ordained professional ministry roles within churches, para-church agencies, and mission organizations, both nationally and internationally.

Program highlights include personal access to faculty mentors who are accomplished scholars and experienced ministry professionals, offering valuable education and faith enrichment. 

Moreover, students have opportunities for internships with local churches, educational ministries, and faith-based organizations, as well as engaging in research and independent study alongside faculty. The curriculum consists of 36 major credit hours, providing a strong foundation in Scripture, with the flexibility to choose from various electives that align with students’ interests and goals.

Bachelor of Arts in Christian Ministries

Noteworthy program highlights include exceptional preparation for seminary studies, including the opportunity to learn biblical languages such as Hebrew, Greek, and Aramaic. Through partnerships with leading seminaries, students can earn advanced placement credits and enter seminary at an advanced level. Faculty mentors, who possess extensive expertise and experience, provide personal guidance and enhance students’ education and faith.

The program also offers valuable internship opportunities in local churches, educational ministries, and mission organizations, allowing students to gain practical experience and conduct research. Students have the flexibility to tailor their studies by choosing from a range of courses totaling 36 major credit hours. 

Elective categories, such as practical theology, biblical studies, historical studies, and theological studies, provide options for specialization. In addition, students can pursue a pre-seminary concentration in biblical languages, biblical interpretation, or historical and theological studies, giving them a competitive edge in graduate school.

Resources and Christian Organizations in Pennsylvania

Now, whether you are seeking Christian literature, data, community services, fellowship, or enriching experiences that resonate with your faith, this guide aspires to become your go-to resource.

Each entry in this guide has been thoughtfully included to cater to the diverse needs of Christian college students. From faith-based data repositories to Christian organizations that offer volunteer opportunities, mission trips, and spiritual mentorship, the selections are varied and comprehensive. The intention is to empower students to make informed choices and make the most of their college years while remaining firmly grounded in their faith.

Coalition for Christian Outreach: The Coalition for Christian Outreach (CCO) is a dynamic organization that greatly benefits Christian college students in Pennsylvania. With a vision to empower students to transform the world, CCO offers a wide array of programs and resources tailored to meet the unique spiritual and developmental needs of Christian students.

Small group Bible studies, mentorship opportunities, retreats, and conferences are just a few examples of the enriching experiences that CCO provides, allowing students to dive deeper into their faith, gain a profound understanding of Scripture, and foster authentic relationships. 

In addition to spiritual growth, CCO places emphasis on equipping students with practical life skills, encouraging them to integrate their faith seamlessly into their academic and professional pursuits. With its holistic approach to ministry, the Coalition for Christian Outreach empowers Christian college students to thrive spiritually, academically, and personally, enabling them to make a positive and lasting impact on their campuses and beyond.

InterVarsity Christian Fellowship:InterVarsity Christian Fellowship goes beyond just hanging out and having fun. They’re all about equipping students for leadership roles, because they believe students aren’t just the future, but the now of the church. With their Catalyst program, they invest in students’ leadership development through specialized training, mentorship programs, and real-life ministry experiences. 

But that’s not all. InterVarsity Christian Fellowship also hooks students up with tons of resources to help them grow spiritually. We’re talking inspiring books, devotionals, and even online platforms with mind-blowing content. They make sure students have access to valuable tools that deepen their understanding of the Christian faith and empower them to live out their beliefs in a way that really matters. 

Christian Campus Fellowship: Christian Campus Fellowship is an incredible student-led organization that makes a big impact on campuses across Pennsylvania. Their mission is simple but powerful: to create a supportive community for Christian college students. They understand the unique challenges and opportunities that college life brings, and they’re there to walk alongside students every step of the way.

One of the ways Christian Campus Fellowship builds this community is through regular worship services. They create a space where students can come together, lift their voices in praise, and encounter God in a meaningful way. Through worship services, Bible studies, and social events, they provide a supportive and uplifting environment where students can grow spiritually, find encouragement, and build lifelong friendships. It’s a community where students can truly thrive and experience the transformative power of their faith.

Frequently Asked Questions About Studying in Pennsylvania

Are Christian colleges in Pennsylvania only for students of the Christian faith?

Christian colleges in Pennsylvania welcome students from diverse religious backgrounds. While their educational programs often incorporate Christian values and perspectives, they create inclusive environments that embrace students of all faiths. These colleges strive to foster an atmosphere of respect, understanding, and spiritual growth for students to explore and develop their own beliefs.

Do Christian colleges in Pennsylvania offer programs beyond theology and religious studies?

Absolutely! Christian colleges in Pennsylvania offer a wide range of academic programs across various disciplines. In addition to theology and religious studies, you can pursue majors in fields such as business, psychology, education, science, arts, and humanities. These colleges provide a comprehensive education that combines strong academic foundations with a Christian worldview.

What kind of campus life can I expect at a Christian college in Pennsylvania?

Campus life at Christian colleges in Pennsylvania is vibrant and diverse. You’ll find a variety of student clubs, organizations, and extracurricular activities to engage in. These colleges often foster a sense of community through regular chapel services, spiritual retreats, volunteer opportunities, and mission trips. Whether it’s joining a worship band, participating in community service projects, or taking part in student-led Bible studies, you’ll have numerous opportunities to grow spiritually and connect with like-minded peers.

Are there support services for students exploring their faith or spiritual journey?

Yes, Christian colleges in Pennsylvania prioritize supporting students in their faith and spiritual journeys. They offer resources such as campus ministries, chaplaincy services, and spiritual counseling to help students navigate their beliefs, ask questions, and find guidance. These colleges aim to create a nurturing environment where students can deepen their faith, explore theological concepts, and build a strong spiritual foundation.

How do Christian colleges in Pennsylvania prepare students for future careers?

Christian colleges in Pennsylvania prioritize academic excellence and the development of skills necessary for successful careers. They offer career services, internships, and networking opportunities to connect students with potential employers. Additionally, these colleges emphasize values such as ethics, leadership, and service, preparing students to make a positive impact in their chosen professions while upholding Christian principles.