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Seminary Gal is the moniker of Barbara Shafer and dates back to the one of the worst winters in Minnesota history. The previous spring, I had finished my first year of seminary at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School and pulled up stakes so that our family could move from Chicagoland to Minnesota. I waited to see if God would call me to resume my seminary education there. I waited through the summer…and through the fall. And I waited into the winter…which began in October that year. Instead of sending me back to seminary, God put my formal education on ice. Finally in January, God gave me a chance to answer Bible questions on the Internet through AllExperts and provided a way through the long winter of my discontent. Barbara became Seminary Gal.

Presently, I am engaged in civic affairs and spiritual formation retreats, having recently retired from regular guest preaching at Plymouth Congregational Church in Racine, Wisconsin.

Prior to that, I did 3 years of volunteer ministry, organizing and conducting Sunday morning worship services at Advocate Condell Medical Center in which I was a regular preacher in rotation with other church leaders.

Other current activities include researching and preparing curricula on spiritual formation and church revival to minister to the 80% of American churches presently experiencing decline.  Watch for the announcement of spiritual formation retreats.

It is the joy of my heart to bring the Gospel to those in need of hope and encouragement through biblical preaching and genuine worship of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

I invite you to contact me on my website if you have Bible questions or if you would like to give me private feedback on any of my writings.


I am an Evangelical Christian whose heart is to make the theological understandable, particularly for those who need answers regarding suffering and those seeking to reconcile the Christian faith with the field of science.

I have a Masters of Divinity degree from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. I particularly enjoy apologetics (defense and explanation of the Christian faith) and systematic theology (understanding how the Bible itself supports various aspects of Christian doctrine). Both of these play a vital role in the “nuts and bolts” of evangelism… but the heart of Christian evangelism is love and compassion.

A turning point for me was when I experienced the loss of my daughter Julia at birth in 1998. This event triggered my desire to know God in a new way and compelled my enrolling in seminary. My faith grew stronger as Jesus walked with me through cancer in 2003. With the comfort I have received from God, I have endeavored to help people who struggle to understand the Christian faith (and those who may be questioning the goodness of God) in light of the problem of evil and suffering. Thank you for blessing me with these opportunities over the past decade.


Master of Divinity, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School

Master of Science in Horticulture, Texas A&M University

Bachelor of Science in Landscape Management, Purdue University

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Seminary Gal Barbara and her husband Warren live in Chicagoland. They have been married since 1982 and have two grown children. Outside of volunteer activities at church, Barbara enjoys gardening, cooking, and creative arts.