Hope's Christian Identity

Hope College is a Christian community that invites all its members into a holistic and robust engagement with the historic Christian faith and a personal encounter with the living Christ through the Holy Spirit. Our Christian identity is described by the following three aspirations: 

Hope Aspires to be Faithful

The college’s board, faculty, administration and staff are committed to the historic Christian faith as expressed in the ecumenical creeds of the ancient church, especially the Nicene and Apostles’ creeds, which Protestants, Catholics and Orthodox hold in common. The variety of expressions of the Christian faith we hold in common contributes to the vitality of Hope College.

Hope Aspires to be Welcoming

Hospitality is a hallmark of the Christian faith. Hope seeks to be a community that affirms the dignity of all persons as bearers of God’s image. We are a community where all come together to offer their gifts of understanding to one another. Students of all faiths — or no faith at all — are welcomed at Hope. We invite our students to join a vibrant, caring academic community where the Christian faith and the pursuit of knowledge intersect and where the full humanity of all may flourish. All at Hope are invited to experience the love and good news of God’s forgiveness found in Jesus Christ.

Hope Aspires to be Transformational

Hope was established as a college in the Reformed tradition, which affirms the centrality of Scripture and the importance of learning. We are committed to freedom of inquiry in the pursuit of truth and knowledge in every field of study, confident that all truth is God’s truth. We also affirm that knowledge is not an end in itself. Scripture urges us to “be transformed by the renewing of your minds, so that you may discern what is the will of God — what is good and acceptable and perfect” (Romans 12:2). The whole Hope community is encouraged in a life-long commitment to grow in God’s grace and to pursue vocations through which the world so loved by God is renewed.

This affirmation of Hope College's Christian identity was approved by the Board of Trustees on May 2, 2018. A few months later, on August 23, 2018, President Dennis N. Voskuil reflected upon Hope's role as “The Aspirational Christian College.” His message, delivered as part of the annual President's Address, discussed the development of the college's Christian identity and provided a context for the aspirations to be faithful, welcoming and transformational.