News November 2020 Perspective Online

Faculty Updates Nov. 2020

New Preaching Series

The Center for Preaching Excellence is launching a new series of video interviews in November. Called Mustreads, the series will feature interviews of authors of homiletical books of interest to preachers. Authors scheduled for initial interviews include Karoline Lewis, Joni Sancken, Jerusha Neal, Dave Ward, and Lisa Thompson.

“In this time of Covid social distancing we are pivoting to providing more online resources for preachers,” said Rev. Dr. Alyce McKenzie, director of the Center. “Mustreads is our way of publicizing authors’ recent work and letting preachers know of its importance to their pulpit ministries in these difficult times.

The videos will be available on the Center’s YouTube channel; look for book covers and bios of the authors at the Center’s website.

This is the third in a series of videos launched by the Center during the pandemic entitled “What’s a Preacher to Do?” The first focused specifically on Preaching During the Pandemic and the second on Preaching in a Pandemic of Racism.

Extension Ministers Gathering

Mark W. Stamm, Professor of Christian Worship, was one of four speakers at a recent gathering of extension ministers in the North Texas Annual Conference. Extension ministers are deacons and elders who serve in positions other than the local church, including hospitals, academic settings, overseas missions and social service ministries. Typically, the group meets at a breakfast during Annual Conference, but this year’s gathering was called by Bishop Michael McKee and held via Zoom.  The speakers each shared an update of their work during 2020 in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. The speakers were Janet Collinsworth (M.T.S. ’09), a deacon who serves at Agape Resources Assistance Center; Wes Magruder (M.Div. ’96), an elder teaching pastors in South Africa in a General Board of Global Ministries program; Ugonna Onuoha (Master of Religious Education ’98), a deacon and chaplain at Children’s Medical Center in Dallas; and Stamm, who talked about how his work as a professor, liturgical scholar and chapel elder at Perkins have transitioned to online. As the extension ministers looked back at 2020, Stamm said, “We have found that grace has abounded, even in the middle of the pandemic, in ways that have been surprising.  We’re doing what we’ve always done, and that’s been good.”  

An Unconventional God

Baker Academic has published a new book by Jack Levison, An Unconventional God, “a fresh take on the Holy Spirit through a careful reading of every reference to the Spirit in the Gospels.” This is a companion volume to Levison’s earlier work, A Boundless God, and analyzes key aspects of Jesus’s experience of the Holy Spirit.

In commending the book N.T. Wright, former Bishop of Durham, writes: “Whatever Jack Levison writes about the Spirit is worth reading. When he now takes us through the familiar territory of the story of Jesus, alerting us to Spirit-filled dimensions we have missed before, our eyes are opened, our minds glimpse fresh truth, and our hearts are once more set on fire.”

Levison is W. J. A. Power Professor of Old Testament Interpretation and Biblical Hebrew and is known for his groundbreaking work on the Holy Spirit and topics both biblical and theological.

Read an excerpt of the book here.

Wabash Grant

Dr. Jeanne Stevenson-Moessner, Professor of Pastoral Care and Pastoral Theology, has received a Wabash Grant to participate in a research project, “Innovations in Chaplaincy Education: Redesigning Chaplaincy-Focused Courses.” Dr. Shelley Rambo of Boston University and Trace Haythorn, CEO of the Association for Clinical Pastoral Education, will be leading the research and Stevenson-Moessner will be collaborating. The Henry Luce Foundation is funding the grant through the Wabash Center. “Our chief goal is to support the design and redesign of courses in chaplaincy and spiritual care,” said the co-chairs in a letter. “We believe that the conversations happening right now around chaplaincy point to the need for our schools to support chaplaincy courses and degree programs that can match the innovation happening on the ground.” Perkins’ faculty just approved an M.Div. with a concentration in Healthcare Chaplaincy, and Dr. Stevenson-Moessner’s grant will further strengthen this new initiative.

Women’s Voices, Women’s Votes

Dr. Jeanne Stevenson-Moessner developed an interest in women’s suffrage in the early 1980s, when she stumbled upon a cardboard box filled with “a bunch of pamphlets” at the Princeton library; one of these was an original but undiscovered document written by Elizabeth Cady Stanton. Later, after her daughter introduced her to eBay, she began collecting postcards, newspapers, other ephemera related to women’s suffrage, and an actual calling card of Sojourner Truth.

Many of those materials are available via a centennial exhibit titled “Women’s Voices, Women’s Votes” now on view at the website of the DeGolyer Library at SMU in Dallas. The display features more than 100 objects from the collections of Stevenson-Moessner, Helen LaKelly Hunt, and the DeGolyer Library, in a wide-ranging show curated by Samantha Dodd.

Read the story in Rare Book Monthly click here.

To view the exhibit, which will remain online permanently, visit: Introduction · Women’s Voices, Women’s Votes · DeGolyer Library Exhibits