March 2020 News Perspective Online

Ministry Monday: Agape Clinic

On a visit to Agape Clinic during the February 24 Ministry Monday, students, faculty and staff were treated to an inspiring glimpse of the clinic’s operation and a chance to meet with Executive Director Stephanie Bohan, who is a Perkins student.

Started in the basement of nearby Grace United Methodist Church, the Agape Clinic provides quality health care services to underserved people and welcomes all who come for help, with no questions asked about income or documentation.

Barbara Taylor, an M.T.S. student, was one of the participants. Having worked for 23 years as a registered nurse in a Dallas hospital, she says the clinic is helping to meet a desperate need that she sees every day in her job.

“As we’re discharging patients, we often hear that they have problems getting their meds and doing follow-up visits,” she said. “They can’t afford insurance and don’t have doctors. As a result, they don’t come to the hospital until they are critically ill. Many of these are people who are working and have jobs.”

The clinic offers dentistry, dermatology, women’s health, exercise equipment, physical therapy and more, and distributes fresh fruits and vegetables through the North Texas Food Bank a few times each month.

“I truly felt the presence of God within that place,” said Taylor. “The clinic embodies that unconditional love, agape.”

Ministry Monday is a program of the Office of Community Engagement.

March 2020 News Perspective Online

Student News

Kay Smeal Authors Devotional

Kiersten “Kay” Smeal has written a new book, Anxious Devotions for Anxious Christians: A 30-Day Devotional. Smeal, a first-year M.Div. student, hopes the book will serve as a resource for those struggling with mental health issues. This devotional begins each day with a passage of Scripture and ends in prayer. The book is available on Amazon.

March 2020 News Perspective Online

Faculty Updates

Wes Allen “Day 1” Sermon Online

The Rev. Dr. O. Wesley Allen Jr., Lois Craddock Perkins Professor of Homiletics at Perkins, was the featured preacher February 16 on “Day 1,” the nationally broadcast ecumenical radio program also accessible online at and by podcast.

Allen’s sermon, “Hey! Who’s on Trial Here?” based on Micah 6:1-8, is available online.


Gingles Op-Ed in DMN

Adjunct faculty member Dallas Gingles’ op-ed on Dietrich Bonhoeffer appeared in

The Dallas Morning News on February 9, titled, “By making so much of politics, Christians are at risk of shifting their focus away from God; Dietrich Bonhoeffer doesn’t teach us to be extremists, but to lead good everyday lives.” Read the column here.


Jack Levison on Podcast

Jack Levison was interviewed by George Mason, pastor of Wilshire Baptist Church in Dallas, for the Good God podcast in February. Listen or watch the interview at

March 2020 News Perspective Online

Alumni/ae Update

James Howard Hill Jr. Wins Award

James Howard Hill Jr. (M.T.S. ’16) is the winner of the 2020 Rubem Alves Award for Theopoetics. Given by ARC: Arts | Religion | Culture, the award acknowledges the contributions of an emerging artist, scholar or activist whose work reflects a commitment to the role of imagination, art and embodiment in faith and reflection on religion. Hill is the fourth recipient of the award since it was established in 2016 in honor of the Brazilian theologian, author and teacher, Rubem Alves. Hill will speak and receive the award at the 2020 Theopoetics Conference in Chicago, March 20-22, 2020. ARC is a nonprofit organization founded in 1962 to support individuals and organizations that cultivate embodied and just ways of knowing and being through artistic and spiritual practices. Read more about the award here and about James Hill here.


Friends We Will Miss

Rev. Vernon Snider

Rev. Vernon Snider (M.Th. ’53), retired Great Plains Conference clergy, died February 18, 2020, at the age of 91. A United Methodist minister for more than 50 years, Rev. Snider served more than 20 churches. Survivors include his wife, Shirley, of Mankato, Kansas; sons Tim (Rita) Snider; Peter David (Milly) Snider; daughter Deb (Dave) Warne; 10 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren. Funeral services were held February 22 at Harmony United Methodist Church in Mankato, Kansas. The family suggests that in lieu of flowers, memorials be made out to Harmony United Methodist Church or Mitchell County Resident Care Center in Beloit, Kansas, in care of the funeral home. Read the full obit here.


Dr. Earl Allen

Dr. Earl Allen (M.Th. ’63), a Perkins alum and civil rights leader, passed away February 16, 2020, at age 86. Allen was involved in Houston’s first lunch counter sit-in that helped integrate public places in Houston. He leaves behind his wife, Jeanette, sons and daughter, several grandchildren and a host of loving relatives and friends. A celebration of life for Dr. Allen took place February 22 at Windsor Village United Methodist Church. Read his full obit here.



Travis Eugene Jordan

Travis Eugene Jordan (M.Th. ’56, M.Div. ’70) passed away February 14, 2020.  His career, which began in SMU’s Bridwell Library, spanned from June 1965 until he retired in October 1997. During his time as a theological librarian, teacher and administrator at SMU he established the Center for Media and Instructional Technology, which helps faculty members become better teachers through the use of technology. A service was held in February at Northaven United Methodist Church in Dallas.