Wycliffe College is an Anglican Church of Canada seminary federated with the University of Toronto. It is evangelical and Low church in orientation. On the other hand, the University of Toronto’s other Anglican college, the University of Trinity College is Anglo-Catholic in outlook. While being an Anglican seminary, Wycliffe College attracts students from many Christian denominations. As a founding member of the Toronto School of Theology, students are free to participate in the wide range of courses from Canada’s largest ecumenical consortium. It trains those pursuing ordination as well as those preparing for academic careers of scholarship and teaching.
Wycliffe College is colloquially referred to as “Yale North” due to the high number of tenured professors who were trained at Yale Divinity School.
The Anglican seminary was founded in 1877 as the Protestant Episcopal Divinity School, by the Church Association of the Diocese of Toronto, a lay Evangelical group at the Cathedral Church of St. James. The name Wycliffe College, inspired by the English theologian John Wycliffe, was given first to the college’s building and then to the college itself.
To ensure its long-term viability, Wycliffe College began considering various forms of union with the University of Toronto towards the end of the 19th century. Wycliffe College became affiliated with the University of Toronto in 1885 and federated in 1889.
In 1969 the Toronto School of Theology (TST) was created as an independent federation of 7 schools of theology, including the divinity faculties of Wycliffe college. Within its own federation, the University of Toronto granted all but theology or divinity degrees. Since 1978, by virtue of a change made in its charter, the University of Toronto has granted theology degrees conjointly with Wycliffe College and other TST’s member institutions.
An Act respecting Wycliffe College, being chapter 112 of the Statutes of Ontario, 1916, was repealed and the Wycliffe College Act, 2002 was substituted. Wycliffe College’s Arms were registered with the Canadian Heraldic Authority on March 15, 2007.
The Wycliffe College Chapel sancturary features several stained glass windows including: `Our Lord“, `St. Paul`, `St. John` and `Timothy` by Robert McCausland Limited.