Evelyn Parker in South Africa
Evelyn Parker, Susanna Wesley Centennial Professor of Practical Theology, is in South Africa as a 2019-2020 U.S. Fulbright Scholar. She’s based at the Desmond Tutu Centre for Religion and Social Justice and the Department of Theology and Religion at the University of Western Cape in Cape Town, working on a project titled “Role of Religious Leaders in Preventing and Intervening in Teen Dating Violence in South Africa.” As Parker gets to know the young women studying there, she says, “Their stories weave a beautiful tapestry of characteristics that include sassiness, savviness, tenacity, courage, resistance, and persistence.” Read more of her early impressions in her blog post, Unshouted Courage in South Africa: The Young Women of the University of the Western Cape.
Rebekah Miles Receives Hendrix Award
Rebekah Miles, Professor of Ethics and Practical Theology at Perkins, has been named one of three Odyssey Medal Recipients by Hendrix College. The medals are presented by the Hendrix College Board of Trustees to individuals whose life achievements exemplify the Hendrix Odyssey Program. Miles, a 1982 Hendrix graduate, was honored for her research; the other two recipients, T. Patterson Clark and Michael Mills, were honored for artistic creativity and leadership and professional development, respectively.
Established in 2004, the Odyssey Program requires all Hendrix College students to complete three Odyssey experiences or projects during their undergraduate careers and helps ensure that students look beyond the classroom to experience educational opportunities in the liberal arts and sciences.
A reception and medal presentation with Hendrix President William M. Tsutsui will take place on November 14 in the Great Hall of the Clinton Presidential Center in Little Rock. Read the Hendrix press release here.
Hendrix College has a longstanding relationship with the United Methodist Church and receives support from the Arkansas Annual Conference, and numerous United Methodist congregations and lay persons from throughout Arkansas. In 2018, Hendrix and Perkins signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) providing special admissions consideration to Hendrix grads considering a seminary education.
Ted Campbell Film Premiere
Ted A. Campbell’s film, Five Waves Over Dallas, premiered on October 23 at Crum Auditorium in the Collins Center. The documentary tells the story of the overlapping migrations that shaped the Dallas area over the past 250 years—from the earliest native-American tribes to today’s global diversity. After the screening, Campbell led a discussion of the movie and answered audience questions.
Campbell, who is Professor of Church History at Perkins, wore many hats in the creation of this production.
“I researched and wrote the script, directed the video, and took almost all of the still shots and drone shots that are used in the documentary,” Campbell said. “I also wrote the orchestral background music and performed one background song on guitar.” A team of undergraduate film students helped with the interviews and other video, and a group of undergraduate acting students handled the voiceovers and transitional scenes.
The film also deals with the religious cultures that waves of migrants brought with them, including Presbyterian, Methodist, Baptists, and the movement that would lead to Churches of Christ and Disciples of Christ for the “Second wave” of settlers that included British-American and enslaved African-American settlers. Then, in the late nineteenth century, Catholics and Jews were part of the wave of Europeans that came to the Dallas area. The final (fifth) waves from the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965, brought newer religious traditions (for instance, Islam) to the Dallas area.
A separate, Spanish-language premiere is tentatively planned for November 12. View the video online at by clicking here.
Robert Hunt Speaks – Often
October has been a busy month for Robert Hunt, whose speaking schedule included: completing the final session of a multi-part program on Global Methodism at FUMC Richardson on October 7; moderating the discussion for Dialogue Matters, featuring Dr. Charles Kimball on “Truth over Fears” at the Richardson Civic Center on October 10; speaking at “Stemming the Tide of Hate,” a daylong conference hosted by CAIR-DFW on the campus of SMU on October 12; speaking on “The Intellect in Christian Tradition: at Faiths in Conversation at Thanksgiving Square on October 14, and finally, moderating and hosting the 2nd annual Religious Freedom Summit at SMU on October 24. In addition, Hunt was quoted in a column by Robert Wilonsky in the Dallas Morning News in response to comments by Robert Jeffress, pastor of First Baptist Church in Dallas, who denounced efforts to impeach President Donald Trump. Hunt’s quote was also cited in this column in the Baptist News Global.
Mental Health and Faith
Jeanne Stevenson-Moessner recently attended “A Dialogue on Mental Health and Faith,” an October 23 gathering of faith leaders and mental health professionals hosted by The Center for Integrative Counseling and Psychology.
Participants pictured (right to left) are Right to left: Sister Maria Gomez, Chaplain Methodist Health System; the Rev. Beatriz Pacheco (M. Div. ’03), Certified ACPE Educator, Methodist Dallas Medical Center; Jeanne Stevenson-Moessner; the Rev. Willacin “Precious” Gholston (M. Div. ’09), Manager of CPE Programs, ACPE Certified Educator, Methodist Health Systems; the Rev. Donny Marandure, Manager of Pastoral Services, Methodist Richardson; Rabbi Michael Cohen; the Rev. David Impwi (M. T. S. ’02), Chaplain, Methodist Health System; and the Rev. Dr. Elias Lopez (M. Div. ’10, D. Min. ’18), Director Methodist Health Systems.