Messiah University


Messiah University is a nationally ranked, private Christian university located near the state capital of Harrisburg, PA.

Contact information

Mailing address:
Messiah University
1 University Ave Ste 3010
Mechanicsburg, PA 17055




Organization details

EIN: 231352661

CEO/President: Kim S Phipps

Chairman: George A. Parmer

Board size: 29

Founder: S.R. Smith

Year founded: 1945

Tax deductible: Yes

Fiscal year end: 06/30

Member of ECFA: No

Member of ECFA since:


Messiah University is a Christian university of the liberal and applied arts and sciences. The University is committed to an embracing evangelical spirit rooted in the Anabaptist, Pietist and Wesleyan traditions of the Christian Church.

Mission statement

The mission of Messiah College is to educate men and women toward maturity of intellect, character, and Christian faith in preparation for lives of service, leadership, and reconciliation in church and society. The opening commitment of our mission statementto develop students' "maturity of intellect, character and Christian faith"reflects the integration of our community's shared faith into every aspect of the Messiah University experience. This holistic educational model was the bold vision of our founder S. R. Smith more than 100 years ago and remains a cornerstone of our identity. The other core components of Messiah's mission-service, leadership and reconciliation-are also firmly rooted in the context of our Christian faith. We don't just serve because it's the "right thing to do"; we serve because God calls us to open our hearts to the poor and needy and to work for justice wherever injustice prevails. We learn to lead believing that Jesus is our ultimate example of leading with compassion, respect and love. And, because of our faith, we are compelled to build bridges of understanding and peace to demonstrate the reconciling love of God to others.

Statement of faith

Messiah University affirms the historic Apostle's Creed as its central statement of faith. In addition, Messiah asks that all community members support the Confession of Faith which expresses the faith orientation of the College in a nonsectarian manner that highlights the specific emphases of the Anabaptist, Pietist and Wesleyan traditions of the Christian faith. It is included frequently in campus worship University educators are expected to support the University Confession of Faith and affirm the Apostles' Creed. Confession

Transparency grade

This ministry has not been assigned a transparency grade.

To understand our transparency grade, click here.

Financial efficiency ratings

Sector: Colleges/Universities

CategoryRatingOverall rankSector rank
Overall efficiency rating261 of 58613 of 53
Fund acquisition rating286 of 58629 of 53
Resource allocation rating118 of 58614 of 53
Asset utilization rating448 of 58620 of 53

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Balance sheet
Receivables, inventories, prepaids$6,389,519$8,264,739$8,537,729$8,253,568$7,427,052
Short-term investments$130,888,795$114,422,506$126,017,423$122,327,231$131,954,350
Other current assets$0$0$0$0$0
Total current assets$149,939,217$133,150,701$147,764,859$145,389,524$152,393,366
Long-term investments$15,793,633$29,633,206$20,666,411$22,217,070$0
Fixed assets$157,577,323$145,320,181$134,980,680$131,272,491$134,205,883
Other long-term assets$6,780,151$21,083,694$7,377,157$20,971,087$15,556,197
Total long-term assets$180,151,107$196,037,081$163,024,248$174,460,648$149,762,080
Total assets$330,090,324$329,187,782$310,789,107$319,850,172$302,155,446
Payables and accrued expenses$11,099,948$11,397,725$8,669,277$7,900,130$8,408,010
Other current liabilities$2,899,118$2,838,864$2,721,569$1,129,932$922,936
Total current liabilities$13,999,066$14,236,589$11,390,846$9,030,062$9,330,946
Due to (from) affiliates$0$0$0$0$0
Other long-term liabilities$7,501,706$9,950,384$11,734,424$14,016,077$12,689,778
Total long-term liabilities$72,373,304$76,865,919$55,106,751$60,854,924$58,148,680
Total liabilities$86,372,370$91,102,508$66,497,597$69,884,986$67,479,626
Net assets20172016201520142013
Temporarily restricted$13,045,825$13,877,672$14,896,032$15,218,852$11,568,505
Permanently restricted$36,717,544$34,337,139$32,583,238$31,533,628$27,604,812
Net assets$243,717,954$238,085,274$244,291,510$249,965,186$234,675,820
Revenues and expenses
Total contributions$6,398,511$8,428,745$7,509,276$9,920,021$7,668,414
Program service revenue$119,381,260$117,842,591$114,798,168$111,716,105$109,462,586
Membership dues$0$0$0$0$0
Investment income$16,351,621$5,831,309$5,169,768$3,820,797$4,317,096
Other revenue$948,322$547,413$631,688$573,637$899,059
Total other revenue$136,681,203$124,221,313$120,599,624$116,110,539$114,678,741
Total revenue$143,079,714$132,650,058$128,108,900$126,030,560$122,347,155
Program services$120,965,009$116,525,502$113,605,664$112,278,186$108,182,068
Management and general$14,098,139$14,356,510$12,740,748$11,419,863$10,971,412
Total expenses$137,024,723$132,744,339$128,577,501$125,820,288$121,222,641
Change in net assets20172016201520142013
Surplus (deficit)$6,054,991($94,281)($468,601)$210,272$1,124,514
Other changes in net assets$0$0$0$0$0
Total change in net assets$6,054,991($94,281)($468,601)$210,272$1,124,514

Response from ministry

No response has been provided by this ministry.


Messiah University received its charter in 1909. Founded by the Brethren in Christ Church, its orientation to Christian service is reflected in its first name-Messiah Bible School and Missionary Training Home. Originally located in Harrisburg, the school was moved to Grantham in 1911 following the construction of Old Main. This building is on land donated by the College's first president, Samuel Rogers Smith, whose house and various business interests were in the village of Grantham. In the early years, the school offered a high school curriculum and several Bible programs. By 1921 it had also become a junior college, making it the second junior college in Pennsylvania. To reflect this development, the school's name was changed to Messiah Bible School. By the early 1950s the school had developed four-year college programs in religious education and theology. Another change of name-to Messiah College-again intentionally reflected this academic advance of the College. During the 1950s, the College added degree programs in the liberal arts and in 1959 discontinued the secondary school program. Following accreditation in 1963, the College significantly increased the number of majors offered in the liberal arts and introduced undergraduate programs in professional studies. Messiah College now offers more than 85 academic majors. Growth in the student body and in facilities accompanied the growth in the academic program. Contributing to the increase in numbers of students was the College's policy, declared in its earliest official statements, of welcoming non-Brethren in Christ people as members of the student body. From a first-year total of 12 students, the student body has grown to nearly 2,800 undergraduate students, representing more than 60 denominations. Facilities have also increased from one building-Old Main-to a campus of 471 acres, offering students a breadth of well equipped, high-quality academic, cocurricular, and residential facilities. Other significant developments have occurred within the last 30 years. In 1965, Upland College, a Brethren in Christ school in California, merged with Messiah College. Three years later, Messiah College opened its Philadelphia Campus in collaboration with Temple University, the first cooperative arrangement in the United States between a church-related college and a nonsectarian university. In 1983, the College became the senior educational partner with Daystar Institute (now Daystar University) in Nairobi, Kenya. Messiah College played a leading role in the founding of the Christian College Consortium in 1971, and later, the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities. In 1972 the legal ties between the College and the Brethren in Christ Church were replaced with a covenant relationship in which legal ownership of the College was placed with a self-perpetuating Board of Trustees.

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