Announcing a new partnership between
SCIO and Pusey House


SCIO is thrilled to announce a significant new partnership with Pusey House. Pusey House is an esteemed educational and church space which takes as its primary mission the welcome of students, offering deeply Christian spiritual formation and vision and encouraging such as integral to scholarly life. The house exists to promote theological study and holiness of life, and to provide spiritual counsel and comfort to those living and studying in Oxford. Located in the heart of Oxford, Pusey House is a marker of English history. As a chaplaincy, library, and social space at the very centre of Oxford, Pusey House provides a welcome space for students and members of the wider community to worship and study.

Located in central Oxford on St Giles Street, Pusey House was opened in 1884 as a memorial to Edward Bouverie Pusey (1800-1882), Regius Professor of Hebrew and Canon of Christ Church, who was for forty years a figurehead of the Oxford Movement and its de facto leader after Newman’s conversion in 1845.

Through this partnership, Pusey House will offer SCIO and its students:

  • Access to its library
  • Participation in Scriptorium, a weekly study group with Christian scholars studying in Oxford (further details below)
  • Chapel and chaplaincy with pastoral support
  • Teaching, lecture, and communal space
  • Participation in a varied and faithful Christian community
  • Friendships and collegiality with students and faculty from across the collegiate university

The Rev’d Dr George Westhaver, Principal of Pusey House, commented on the new partership:

Pusey House is delighted that its long-term connection with SCIO and its students is further strengthened as it formalizes a partnership which will see the House and its community even more engaged with the SCIO staff and students. We look forward to welcoming them to our daily worship and study, to our teaching spaces and to the Pusey House Library, as well as offering them our pastoral support. We hope also that our Scriptorium programme will create a shared space for research, Christian scholarly community, and prayer. Since its foundation 140 years ago, Pusey House has sought to ‘promote theological study and holiness of life’ and to ‘provide spiritual counsel and comfort’ to members of the University and to all who avail themselves of its work and ministry. We believe that this image of the life of the mind and the life of prayer belonging together deeply complements SCIO’s own Christian and scholarly visions and so this is a natural and authentic expansion of what SCIO students have sought out from us for many years.

Throughout the past 20 years, SCIO students have been visiting Pusey House – using its library, worshipping in the chapel, and finding a community of like-minded Christian scholars in Oxford. We share a common ethos and mission to promote rigorous study, holistic education, and spiritual growth, which has led to a natural friendship. The current partnership has evolved from this, and it provides a unique opportunity for students to study and worship in a stunningly beautiful, medieval place that fosters community of faith and education, providing an enhanced experience for SCIO students.

Further details on Scriptorium

We are excited to invite future students to participate in the Pusey House Scriptorium programme, offering a unique environment for study, research, Christian scholarly community, and prayer. Scriptorium meets on Tuesday’s through Thursday’s during the 8-week University of Oxford term. Students from a variety of academic disciplines come together to study and pray together. The programme provides a regular rhythm for students, with a typical daily schedule as follows:

  • 9:20 am: Pray together, and get to know each other

  • 9:30 am: 1st independent study block

  • 11:00 am: Free coffee and teas provided in the Hood Room

  • 11:30 am: 2nd independent study block

  • 1:00 pm: Lunch in the Hood Room*

  • 1:45 pm: 3rd independent study block

  • 3:15 pm: Free coffee and teas provided in the Hood Room

  • 3:45 pm: 4th independent study block

  • 5:15 pm: Meet to pray and reflect on the day. Students are welcome to stay for Evensong which begins in the Chapel at 5:30 pm.

*Student fees will cover at least four lunches during the term. Students are welcome to purchase more lunches themselves.


Alumni reflections on their experience with Pusey House and Scriptorium:

“Scriptorium at Pusey House means so much more than just a place to study, just as Pusey House is so much more than just a church or a library or the space where C. S. Lewis Society meetings take place. It is all these things, yes, but when I stepped into Scriptorium that first weekday I found a community. We joined together in rhythms of prayer, study, and fellowship (with food!). I was welcomed into lunch and spoke easily with a theology student training for the priesthood, then a DPhil student studying history, both of whom treated me as an equal colleague when I told them I was studying medieval literature. I experienced the glorious English and Scottish holiday of Burns Night, complete with “ode to the haggis” and candlelit meal. I got “stuck” in a theology conversation upstairs after an evening prayer service, contemplating the nature of the Eucharist with a friend and several Pusey interns. I entered into the full solemn cycle of Holy Week services with the church, walking with the community and with Jesus through the last moments of his life and into the glorious dawn of the resurrection. I curled up next to the diamond-paned windows and old shelves of church history books, working on my research project. I grew to know the Pusey “regulars” and greeted them in the library or noticed them around town and across the aisle during daily prayer services. And, as the term drew to a close, I knew that I had found more than my favourite study spot – I had found a precious place and a community of scholars who valued deep conversation, laughter, and a desire to love God with their minds as well as their hearts.” – Karah Snyder (Spring ’24)

“One of the biggest and hardest lessons I learned while in Oxford was the importance of rhythms of rest, and how detrimental to my health—physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual—it is to not take adequate breaks. That is exactly what Scriptorium is designed to help combat. The day starts with light conversation with fellow Scriptorium participants and a short liturgy and prayers; then we get to work, basking in the tender embrace of the sun pouring through the tall library windows. A few hours later, we break for tea. In this short break, we again say prayers and converse with our fellow scholars. It is a time of rest and encouragement. This pattern repeats a few times, and then the day concludes with scripture and prayer. The benefit of Scriptorium was two-fold for me. First, it provided built in breaks, which I otherwise would not have taken for myself. Second, and more importantly, through the liturgy and prayers, it brought my mind back to the reason I do what I do. It reminded me that when I relinquish my worries and stress to the One who promises to hold them, I am better able to focus my mind on the meaningful work at hand, and I am more inclined to offer the work up as worship.”  – Aimee Smith (Spring ’24)

“I can’t imagine my time in Oxford without Pusey House. It came recommended to me by one of my professors who studied abroad in Oxford during her college years as a perfect complement to my experience with SCIO. The academic fellowship I found in Scriptorium gave me the encouragement to finish many of my tutorial papers and to enjoy sharing the experience with others. It broadened my horizons and enriched my academic experience to learn more about the pursuits of other Oxford students from around the world.”  – Charlotte McNamee (Spring ’23)