St. Gregory Nazianzen Orthodox Institute for Faith and Learning is a free-standing, not-for-profit, private, religious institution of higher learning governed by an independent Board of Trustees. The Institute's raison d'être is the preparation of men and women for service and leadership roles in the Church, (i.e., its academic programs are directed towards the preparation of students for religious vocations as clergymen, monastics, professionals, and laypersons in the disciplines of theology and ministry, administration, counseling, education, fine arts, media communications, music, social work, etc.). The Orthodox Studies programs of the Institute are accredited by the Department of Education of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Mexico, Central America, Colombia, Venezuela, and the Islands of the Caribbean, (Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople), and are thereby certified to train and prepare candidates for ordination and other ministries in the Orthodox Church.
Notwithstanding, as an academic unit of Universidad Rural de Guatemala, St. Gregory Nazianzen Institute has entered into a wide range of cooperative agreements, (including, memoranda of understanding, partnerships, and other alliances), with other Christian and secular institutions, societies, associations, and organizations in order to promote and enhance the acquisition of the experience, knowledge, and skills needed to undertake and support service/ministry in the Church and to the wider community. In the present economic environment, those who serve cannot always rely on local Church communities for financial support, and therefore cooperative agreements with non-religious institutions that can lead to secular professional qualifications, and ultimately, gainful secular employment, very often compliment the work of the Church by providing a means of support for those who serve in these vital ministries. In short, such agreements provide the Institute’s students with opportunities to acquire the secular professional qualifications, which are not offered by the Institute, enabling them to follow in the steps of the Holy Apostle Paul and his ‘tent-making’ ministry, (cf. Acts 18:3). For additional information regarding accreditation, memberships, and cooperative agreements, see Facts at a Glance.