December 2022 News Perspective Online

Faculty News

New Book by Bill Lawrence  

Wipf & Stock Publishers recently released When the Church Woke, a new book by William B. Lawrence, professor of American Church History and former dean of Perkins. The book examines “the combination of racism and white supremacy that has been woven into the fabric of the church to the degree that one cannot discuss the church in America apart from this sin,” in particular, in American Methodism and The United Methodist Church. “When the Church Woke is critical but not cynical,” writes Susan Henry-Crowe, General Secretary of the UMC’s General Board of Church and Society. “In this extraordinary theological and historical critique of the United Methodist Church in the U.S., Lawrence presents a church that stands at the crossroads of a deeply rooted racist past and a future with the possibility of exercising judgment and forgiveness to overcome the racial crisis that the church has too long ignored.”

George Mason Op-Ed

The Dallas Morning News recently published an essay titled “Religion and science must come together to fight climate challenges,” written by the Rev. George A. Mason. He’s adjunct professor at Perkins and senior pastor emeritus of Wilshire Baptist Church. The op-ed highlighted the global ecological crisis as an existential threat that calls for all sectors of society to work together, including religious leaders and scientists. “The global ecological clock is ticking, and we are running out of time to reverse the devastating effects of human behavior on the planet,” Mason wrote. “Every religion must draw upon its own spiritual teachings to contribute to this effort to bend the curve of opinion toward ecological conservation.” The op-ed was published in conjunction with the Nov. 1 event at Perkins that gathered faith leaders for a symposium, “Confronting Our Global Ecological Crisis,” sponsored by the Museum of World Religions. Dallas Morning News subscribers may read the column online here.

David Wilson Elected Bishop

Photo by Sam Hodges, UM News.

The Rev. David Wilson was elected as bishop in The United Methodist Church’s South Central Jurisdictional Conference on Nov. 2, becoming the denomination’s first Native American bishop.

Wilson has been the assistant to the bishop for the Oklahoma Indian Missionary Conference (OIMC) since 2021, following 19 years as a conference superintendent. He was lead coordinator for the North Oklahoma City Native American Ministry for eight years, following eight years as a pastor of a church in Norman, Oklahoma. He served seven years as director of promotions/interpretations for the Oklahoma Indian Missionary Conference, after serving as pastor of a church in Tahlequah, Oklahoma, and campus minister for the Native American Campus Ministry program at Northeastern State University. Wilson has served as a long-time instructor with Perkins’ Course of Study School (COSS) at the conference.  Read the story here.

Hunt on International Zoom

The Rev. Dr. Robert Hunt, Director of Global Theological Education, was part of an international Zoom on “Indigenous Christian Art: Building Bridges Between Gospel and Culture,” held November 26. The program was co-sponsored the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry (GBHEM), the International Association of Methodist Schools, Colleges, and Universities (IAMSCU) and the Asia Pacific Association of Methodist Educational Institutions (APAMEI.)