Rick Barger, president, spoke about Trinity at Preston Meadow Lutheran Church, Plano, Texas, on Nov. 22; represented Trinity at the inauguration of President Louise Johnson at Wartburg Seminary on Dec. 4; participated on Dec. 19 in the commissioning of the Rev. Dr. Erin Swenson-Reinhold at Lord of Life Lutheran Church, Fairfax, Va.; led a J-Term immersion trip to Abiding Hope, Littleton, Colo., and to Haiti, January 3-16, for 12 students and four adults; co-taught Theology of Mission with Dr. Jim Childs for the Spring 2016 semester; spoke about Trinity at Salem Lutheran, March 16, in Orlando, Fla.; spoke about the mission and viability of Trinity at the State of the Community night for the city of Bexley on March 31; taught on Capital University’s campus on April 19; spoke at Prince of Peace Lutheran Church, Loveland, Ohio on April 24; represented Trinity and spoke at the annual conference for senior pastors of the ELCA’s largest congregations, May 10-13, in Rancho Mirage, Calif.; addressed the Southeast Michigan Synod assembly on May 14; addressed the Indiana/Kentucky Synod assembly and gave a Spark Talk, June 9-11; and has traveled throughout 14 different states advancing the mission of Trinity for the sake of the world. President Barger will lead a leadership conference for Texas-Louisiana Gulf Coast clergy and leaders August 17-19.
Trinity faculty are regularly engaged with the church and society. Recent faculty news includes:
Brad Binau, academic dean, spent the first part of his spring sabbatical gathering, organizing, and uploading evidence to assure the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association that Trinity is meeting the standards needed to deserve continuing accreditation. He taught two adult education sessions at Broad Street Presbyterian in March on “Rabbi Jesus: The Teller of Uncomfortable Stories,” and in April he traveled to Germany, where he gave a talk in a Wiesbaden congregation on U.S. immigration policy and the ELCA’s positions on it; preached at a conference in Bad Segeberg to honor the role of music in the Reformation; and delivered a lecture to students at Trinity’s partner seminary in Ratzeburg titled “Proclaiming The Good News: Ideas About Preaching From The USA That Should Be Helpful To Preachers Everywhere.”
Seth Bridger, director for recruiting and admissions, represented Trinity at the God’s Idea discernment retreat in the Nebraska Synod this past November and led several “skill shops” in December during the Michigan Youth Winter Gathering in Lansing, Michigan. During January, he participated with a one-day discernment event in Austin, Texas, and a weekend retreat with Texas A&M’s Lutheran Campus Ministry. He preached and participated in worship at Immanuel Lutheran, Marion, Ohio; First English Lutheran, Columbus, Ohio; and St. Phillip Lutheran, Columbus. In March, he participated in the Region 6 Spring Discernment Retreat held at the Proctor Center in London, Ohio.
Teddy Ceasar, recruiter for Central Ohio,has taken on a new role and turned his attention to building relationships and recruiting in the Central Ohio Region. He preached at Capital University, hosted Shadow-A-Seminarian Day on campus, and attended several community events. As a result, new relationships with community partners have been forged and some relationships with area churches have been enhanced. He also participated in the Northwest Columbus Clergy Cluster and Explore Trinity.
Brad Gee, vice president for Advancement, in November preached and led an adult forum at Grace Lutheran Church, Palo Alto, Calif. (Matt Smuts ’96); preached at a Thank Offering service at St. Paul, Lancaster, Ohio; participated in the Florida-Bahamas Synod Conference on Ministry; and preached at Salem Lutheran Church, Orlando, Fla. (Derek Hoven ’10). In January, he participated in the ELCA College, University and Seminary Vice Presidents for Advancement conference; attended the annual Martin Luther King Jr. breakfast in Columbus; participated in the Tri-Synodical Theological Conference (Northern Texas-Northern Louisiana; Texas-Louisiana Gulf Coast Synod; Southwestern Texas); hosted an alumni breakfast and preached at Texas Lutheran University (Kara Joy Stewart ’02); and participated in a discernment retreat with students from TLU. In April, he hosted the Team of 50 pastors on Trinity’s campus.
Tim Huffman, retiredJohn H.F. Kuder Professor of Christian Mission, preached at the installation of Betsy Williams, pastor of St. Paul Lutheran Church, Newark, Ohio. Pastor Williams’ installation marks the completion of the transition from all male clergy to all female clergy in the ELCA in the Newark-Granville-Heath metropolis. Huffman’s article, “Theological Journals: Bridges over Troubled Waters,” appeared in the January issue of Currents in Mission and Theology. His “Luther: Forgotten, But Not Gone,” is the concluding chapter in the forthcoming book, The Forgotten Luther: Luther and Economic Reforms, to be published later this year by Lutheran University Press. This is the product of a major symposium held on Capitol Hill at Reformation Lutheran Church last November. He also has been elected to the Board of the Freedom School of Licking County, which is organized according to the principles of Paulo Freire, Brazilian educator and author of Pedagogy of the Oppressed.
Diane Hymans, acting academic dean and professor of Christian Education, attended the ELCA Seminary Dean’s meeting in Chicago on February 26; attended the annual meeting of the Covenant Cluster at the Carol Joy Holling Center in Ashland, Neb., March 17-19; and attended the third ELCA Faith Formation Summit at Techny Towers in Chicago, April 7-9.
Henry J. Langknecht, Haman-Pfahler Professor of Homiletics and Christian Communication, in February received certification in online teaching from the University of Wisconsin. He also taught an adult forum, “The Nine Quirks of Lutheranism,” at All Saints Lutheran Church in Worthington, Ohio, and presented that same material at American Lutheran Church, Clinton Township, Mich. He was the keynote speaker at the rostered leaders’ event in the Northern Great Lakes Synod and preacher in residence at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church in Upper Arlington.
Paul D. Numrich, professor or world religions and interreligious relations and Professor in the Snowden Chair for the Study of Religion and Interreligious Relations, Methodist Theological School in Ohio, made the following presentations: “Sacred Assemblies under the Same Roof: How Groups Share Common Space for Religious Purposes,” Religion and the Social Sciences Section, AAR Annual Meeting, Atlanta; “Understanding Islam” (two sessions), Trinity Lutheran Church, Columbus; and “Buddhism,” First Community Church, Columbus. He was cited in the story, “Opposition to Suburban Mosque Predictable and Sad, Muslims Say,” Chicago Tribune (Feb. 23, 2016). His article, “Space-Sharing by Religious Groups,” was published by Practical Matters Journal (Spring 2016) and online at http://practicalmattersjournal.org/2016/04/08/space-sharing/.
Emlyn Ott, associate professor of ministry and pastoral leadership and dean of Leadership Formation, taught a D.Min. course, “Congregational Systems,” during the January term for the Bexley Seabury Federation in Chicago. She also traveled to Iowa to co-teach the J-term course, “Flourishing in the Parish,” with Pastor Peter Marty at his congregation, St. Paul Lutheran Church in Davenport. She provided transition consultations with congregations in Ohio, Kentucky, and Minnesota; represented Trinity students at the ELCA First Call Assignment Process and Candidacy Manual Training; produced two articles and blog posts for the “Living by the Word” section of the April issue of The Christian Century; offered training for Presbyterian Ruling Elders in the Scioto Valley Presbytery; and attended the Midcareer Theological Educator Conference in Phoenix, Ariz. She led 19 Trinity and Bexley Seabury students and spouses in the Spring Semester Family of Origin groups on campus, and offered worship and preaching support throughout the spring and summer at Broad Street Presbyterian Church.
Julie Faith Parker, assistant professor of Old Testament,presented on her book, Valuable and Vulnerable, at the Society of Biblical Literature meeting in November 2015 in Atlanta. In January, she gave a talk at the Larchmont Mamaroneck Interfaith Council (Larchmont, N.Y.) entitled, “Shoes, Jews, and Junior High Blues: Personal and Scriptural Reflections on Jewish Christian Relations.” In February, she presented on the Jewish origins of Christian Scriptures at Messiah Lutheran Church, Reynoldsburg, Ohio. In April, she presented “The Bible behind Bars: How Teaching at Sing Sing Maximum Security Prison Changed My Understanding of Scripture” at Faith Lutheran Church, Whitehall, Ohio. This spring, she led Bible studies on Genesis at two Equipping Leaders for Mission and Ministry weekend retreats for the North/West Lower Michigan Synod (held in Wyoming and Frankfort, Michigan). In March, she presented on her paper, “Something New Under the Sun: Introducing Childist Biblical Interpretation,” at the meeting of the Hebrew Bible Seminar of Columbia University. Recent publications include the essay “Preaching with the Enemy” in Tell the Truth, Shame the Devil, edited by James Ellis. Macon, Ga.: Smyth & Helwys, 2015; and a book review of The Power of Children by Margaret MacDonald, in the Review of Biblical Literature 2 (2016).
Cheryl M. Peterson, associate professor of systematic theology, co-presented with Dr. Walter Taylor for the Southern Ohio Synod’s Annual Bishop’s Theological Convocation on March 14, on the topic of Christology. Her article, “The Church” was published in Lutheran Quarterly v. 30 (2016): 43-59. She will be speaking at two Synod Assemblies this coming spring and summer: Southern Ohio Synod and Northeastern Pennsylvania Synod.
Denise Sager, vice president for Leadership Formation, accompanied the students in the January Term course, “Intensive Spanish for Ministry,” to Cuernavaca, Mexico, for Spanish language and cultural immersion. She has been visiting different congregations weekly on a mission to re-acquaint herself with area churches and ministries. As editor of Trinity Seminary Review, she is soliciting articles and (recent) book reviews from alumni.
Joy A. Schroeder, professor of Church History and Bergener Professor of Theology and Religion with Capital University, presented a paper entitled “Retrieving the Voices of Female Biblical Interpreters in Early Christianity: Methodologies, Possibilities, and Limits” at the Society of Biblical Literature Annual Meeting in Atlanta, in November 2015. In April 2016, she led a workshop at the Institute of Liturgical Studies at Valparaiso University on the topic “Vocation and Call at the Time of the Reformation.”
Walter F. Taylor Jr., Ernest W. and Edith S. Ogram Professor of New Testament Studies, completed the second half of his fall sabbatical “thank you tour” with the following stops in October and November: Zion, Comstock Park, Mich.; Christ United, DeWitt, Mich.; and Peace, Gaylord, Mich., where in each place he spoke on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict and led a day-long preaching workshop; St. John, Grayling, Mich., where he taught on Apocalypticism; and St. Luke’s Hospital, Maumee, Ohio; Grace Lutheran, Elkhart, Ind.; and St. Paul’s Lutheran, Waldo, Ohio, where he presented on “Paul as Leader.” He also spoke on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict at the Northeastern Ohio Bishop’s Gathering at Holy Trinity, Canton, Ohio, and at a first-call event in Indianapolis. In addition, he spoke at Advent in Solon, Ohio, and led a pericope workshop at Zion in Tipp City, Ohio. In December, he preached and taught at Trinity in Kalamazoo, Mich., preached at First English in Columbus, and taught at Messiah in Reynoldsburg, Ohio.