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Michael R. Fisher, Jr. (Ethics and Society):
 Will participate in the Center for Religious Wisdom & World Affairs' scholarly project on homelessness.  


Rachel Heath (Theological Studies):  
Article published in the Journal of Interreligious Studies (
"Lessons in Multifaith Chaplaincy and Feminist Thought: Making Room for Multiple Religious Belonging in Interfaith Praxis"


Carolyn Davis (Theological Studies):  
Will appear on PBS Religion and Ethics Newsweekly discussing the faith of the candidates and the morality of voting. Carolyn will also have columns out on November 1, 2016 in the Washington Post and Interpreter Magazine

Kate Lassiter (Religion, Psychology and Culture):  Kate will depart with a delegation from the Archdiocese of Cincinnati to make pilgrimage for the Year of Mercy and celebrate jubilee for prisoners.


Lauren Smelser White (Theological Studies):  
Article published in the Harvard Theological Review, volume 109, issue 02, pp. 159-177.


Casey Sigmon (Homiletics and Liturgics):  
2015-2016 Ann E. Dickerson Scholarship recipient.


Michael R. Fisher, Jr. (Ethics and Society):  Awarded the Make a Difference Scholarship from the United Church of Christ.


Michael R. Fisher, Jr. (Ethics and Society):  Selected as a 2015-2016 FTE Doctoral Fellow.


Myounghun Yun (Religion, Psychology and Culture):
 presents "The Contemporary Fatherhood Movements and Ministry to Korean/Korean American Fathers"


Richard Coble (Religion, Psychology and Culture):  
article "'You Try to Control Me': Yearning, Separation, and Protest in Teenage Male Spirituality" was recently published in the Journal of Childhood and Religion:


Jennifer Awes Freeman (Historical Studies):  Awarded the John Doran Essay Prize from the Annual Symposium on Medieval and Renaissance Studies at St Louis University.


Jennifer Awes Freeman (Historical Studies):   Awarded a Heckman Stipend to conduct short-term research at the Hill Museum and Manuscript Library at St. John's University in Collegeville, MN.


Peter Capretto (Religion, Psychology, and Culture):  Presented "Loved Objects, Manic-Depression, and Abjection:  The Truth of Pathology in Klein and Kristeva" at the Psychology and the Other Conference 2013, Cambridge, MA.


Casey Sigmon (Homiletics and Liturgics): Received the Ann E. Dickerson Scholarship for the 2013-14 academic year from the Higher Education and Leadership Ministries of the Disciples of Christ. 


Naomi Annandale taught an online class, "Disability Awareness," for United Theological Seminary's (Ohio) program in ministries with persons with disabilities, June, 2013.


Amy Allen (New Testament) successfully completed her Qualifying Examinations.

Jessica Bratt (Religion, Psychology and Culture): “More than an iPad: The role of technology in the spiritual care of children and families” at the Pediatric Chaplains Network’s National Conference.

Jin Choi (New Testament) successfully defended her dissertation: “Understanding as the Embodiment of Mystery in the Gospel of Mark”

Jin Choi (New Testament) accepted a Postdoctoral Fellowship from the Louisville Institute.

Jin Choi (New Testament) was invited into a tenure track position to be the Assistant Professor of New Testament and Christian Origins at Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School. This is a tenure track position. 

Jennifer Freeman (Historical Studies): Presented "Eva Lactans: Milk, Motherhood, and the Ashburnham Pentateuch" at the "Gender and Transgression in the Middle Ages" conference at St Andrews University in Scotland.

Jennifer Freeman (Historical Studies):  Received recognition from the Society for Medieval Feminist Scholarship's for best graduate student essay. The essay: "Theologizing Gender in the Rothschild Canticles" will be published in a forthcoming issue of Medieval Feminist Forum.

Jennifer Freeman (Historical Studies): Presented "The Good Shepherd and the Enthroned Ruler" at the North American Patristic Society annual conference.

Naomi Annandale presented a poster, "Disability, Care and the Family: A Model for Attentive Care for Families Facing Disabilities" at the Conference on Medicine and Religion, Chicago, May 2013

Sean Hayden (Theological Studies) graduated.

Gerald Liu (New Testament) graduated.

Gerald Liu (Homiletics and Liturgics): Appointed as visiting lecturer in Homiletics at Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary on a one-year appointment.

Brandon McCormack (Homiletics and Liturgics), received (and declined) a Postdoctoral Fellowship from the Louisville Institute.

Brandon McCormack (Homiletics and Liturgics), accepted a position Instructor of African American and Diaspora Religions at the University of Louisville. This is a tenure track position.

Lisa Thompson (Homiletics and Liturgics) successfully defended her dissertation: “The Caged Bird’s 2st Century Song: A Homiletical Practical Theology from the Preaching of African American Women”

Kelly Whitcomb (Hebrew Bible) graduated.



Jennifer Freeman (Historical Studies): presented "The Gospel Book in the Carolingian Liturgy and the Opus Caroli Regis" at the Medieval Academy of America's annual conference, also at UT Knoxville.

Jennifer Freeman (Historical Studies): Presented "The Function of the Gospel Book in the Liturgy: East and West," at the Sociology of Religion "Material Religion" conference at Durham University in the UK.

Lisa Thompson (Homiletics and Liturgics): Appointed Assistant Professor of Homiletics at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. This is a tenure track position.

Myounghun Yun: Successfully completed his Qualifying Examinations.



Jessica Bratt (Religion, Psychology and Culture): Presented “The Embodied Experience of Clergy Women” at Princeton Theological Seminary’s Koinonia forum.



Daryl Ellis (Theological Studies): Published “The Ambivalence and Lust of Marriage: With and Beyond Augustine towards a Theology of Marriage as Consecrated Sacrifice,” Scottish Journal of Theology,vol. 66, no. 1 (2013), 30-49.



Asante Todd (Ethics and Society): Appointed to a Faculty Position in Christian Ethics at Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary. This is a tenure track position.

Jennifer Williams (Hebrew Bible): Presented: “Exploring Individual and Group Identity and Power through Names in the Elephantine Contracts” in the Literature and History of the Persian Period section. Annual Meeting of the Society of Biblical Literature.

Myounghun Yun (Religion, Psychology, and Culture) presented: The Masculine Subject, the Confucian Self: Reconsidering Hegemonic Masculinity in a salvific ritual space of Confucianism in Men, Masculinities, and Religions Group. American Academy of Religion Annual Meeting


Amy Allen Writes Preaching Helps for Currents in Theology and Mission

Amy Allen, a third year Theology and Practice fellow, recently contributed the preaching helps for the August 2012 issue of Currents in Theology and Mission.  Currents is a journal published by the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, in cooperation with Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary and Wartburg Theological Seminary.  Currents aims to provide resources for mission, ministry, and theological growth for pastors, diaconal ministers, associates in ministry, and other church leaders.  Allen is an ordained minister in the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America (ELCA) pursuing a Ph.D. in New Testament and Early Christianity.


Amy Allen Receives Denominational Grant

Amy Allen, a third year Theology and Practice fellow, has been selected to receive a grant for advanced theological study in the 2012-2013 school year.  This grant is through the Educational Grant Program of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.  Grants are given to Ph.D., Th.D., and Ed.D. candidates in theological study appropriate to seminary teaching.  Allen is an ordained minister in the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America (ELCA) pursuing a Ph.D. in New Testament and Early Christianity.


Director Ted Smith accepted a position as Assistant Professor of Preaching and Ethics at Candler School of Theology at Emory University.

Jaco J. Hamman becomes the second Director of the Program in Theology and Practice at Vanderbilt Divinity School. He is the Associate Professor of Religion, Psychology and Culture. 



Katherine Lassiter Appointed to Faculty of Mount St. Joseph

T+P fellow Kate Lassiter has accepted a position as Assistant Professor of Religious and Pastoral Studies at the College of Mount St. Joseph in Cincinnati.  A member of the very first cohort of T&P fellows, Kate's work has centered in the area of Religion, Psychology and Culture.  She served her externship at the Institute for Pastoral Studies at Loyola University in Chicago.  She graduated this May.  Congratulations, Kate!


Casey Thornburgh Sigmon Receives Denominational Grant

Casey Thornburgh Sigmon, a second-year Theology and Practice fellow, has been selected to receive a grant through the Ann E. Dickerson Scholarship Fund for the 2012-2013 academic year.  The Ann E. Dickerson Scholarship is rewarded to  female members of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) working toward the Ph.D. degree in religion studies. Sigmon is an ordained minister in the Disciples of Christ pursuing a Ph.D. In Homiletics and Liturgics.


Michael Brandon McCormack receives Dissertation Fellowship

Michael Brandon McCormack received a 2012 Dissertation Fellowship from the Fund for Theological Education. The FTE Dissertation Fellowship is awarded to African American doctoral students who are writing their Ph.D. or Th.D. dissertations and intend to teach and do research in theological schools.


Michael Brandon McCormack to present paper at University of London, Birkbeck

Michael Brandon McCormack, a fifth year fellow in Theology and Practice will be presenting a paper entitled, “Black Activist Clergy and the Search for Justice in the Era of Hip Hop,” at the Black Church Activism and Contested Multiculturalism in Europe, North America and Africa conference at the University of London, Birkbeck. The conference, which meets May 28-30, 2012, is a part of the ongoing Transatlantic Roundtable on Religion and Race. The paper will be presented at the Plenary Panel on Churches and Black Youth Empowerment.


Angela Cowser appointed to Garrett-Evangelical

Sixth-year fellow Angela Cowser has been appointed to serve as Instructor in the Sociology of Religion and Director of the Center for the Church and the Black Experience at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary.  Located on the Evanston campus of Northwestern University, Garrett is affiliated with the United Methodist Church.  Angela will begin her work there in November 2012.  Congratulations, Angela!

Naomi Annandale completed a year-long internship in the Mayor's Office of Children and Youth, May, 2012, where she produced an extensive research report on the work of local faith-based organizations on behalf of children and youth, to be used for the implementation of Nashville's Child and Youth Master Plan, as well as doing other research work for the office.

Naomi Annandale completed the intermediate program in Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental Disabilities through Vanderbilt's Kennedy Center for Excellence in Disabilities, and received LEND certification, May, 2012.


Andover Newton website features T&P Fellow Gerald Liu

Theology and Practice fellow Gerald Liu will be serving his externship during the 2012-13 academic year at Andover Newton Theological School.  You can read more about Gerald and the placement here.

Naomi Annandale presented a paper on Wesleyan theology and religious pluralism to the Wesleyan Theological Society at their annual meeting, Nashville, TN, March 2012.


Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary story about T&P Fellow Sean Hayden

Sean Hayden, a sixth-year fellow in the Program in Theology and Practice, is serving his externship at Louisville Presbyterian Seminary.  Read more about his work here.


Lilly Endowment Renews Grant to Support the Theology and Practice Program

The Lilly Endowment has renewed its support for the Program in Theology and Practice with a $5 million grant.  This grant will extend the program by five years, making for a total of 15 cohorts and over 70 fellows.  Read the whole story here.


Jennifer Williams Writing for Oxford Handbook of the Prophets

Jennifer Williams has been invited to contribute an essay on Queer Readings of the Prophets for the forthcoming Oxford Handbook of the Prophets.   The invitation came following Jennifer's presentation of "A Feminist Reading and a Queer Re-reading of the "Cities' Destruction" in the Book of Jeremiahin the Writing/Reading Jeremiah section at the SBL's 2010 Annual Meeting.


Amy Allen Recieves Grant

Amy Allen, 2nd year fellow, received an educational grant from the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America for candidates in theological study appropriate to seminary training.


Amy Allen Presents Paper at SBL

Second-year fellow Amy Allen will be presenting a paper entitled "Towards a More Perfect Union: A Scriptural Reading of the Purpose of Marriage in Luke-Acts" at the Society of Biblical Literature's Annual Meeting in San Francisco this November.  The paper will be read in the Contextual Interpretation group and will call for a contemporary treatment of marriage and family life in service of God's mission rather than family concerns based on Luke-Acts.  

Towards a More Perfect Union: A Scriptural Reading of the Purpose of Marriage in Luke-Acts


Peter Kline C0-Presents at AAR

Second-year fellow Peter Kline will be co-presenting a paper entitled "God" at the American Academy of Religion's Annual Meeting in San Francisco this November. The paper will be discussed at the Theology and Apocalyptic Working Group session. It is a constructive statement on the doctrine of God that takes its bearings from an apocalyptic account of prayer.


Jennifer Williams presents at SBL

Fourth-year fellow Jennifer Williams will be presenting a paper entitled "The Book of Job: On Friendship, Bullying, and Sacrifice" at the Society of Biblical Literature's Annual Meeting in San Francisco this November.  The paper will be read in the Bible and Pastoral Theology section and will consider strategies for reading and teaching the Book of Job with high school youth in light of the contemporary issue of bullying.


First-year T&P fellows to offer panel at SECSOR

The entire cohort of first-year fellows collaborated to propose a panel to the upcoming SECSOR conference. Their panel - "Beyond the Boundaries? Theorizing (Liberative) Gendered Spaces at the Intersections of the Theological Disciplines and Christian Practice" - was accepted. It will be jointly sponsored by the Bible and Modern Culture and the Women, Gender and Religion sections.

The panel will feature the following five papers:

"Manly Men & Spirited Women: The (Paradoxical) Inclusion & Exclusion of Gendered Bodies in the Pulpit," Casey Sigmon (HL)

"Embodying Inferiority: Inadequate Interpretations of the Legacy of Eve," Yolanda Norton (HB)

"Belonging & Border Logic: Scripture, Theology, & LGBTQ Suicides," Brandy Daniels (TS)

"What God Hath Not Bound: Challenging Biological Essentialism by Re-reading Scripture in Conservative Stone-Campbell Congregations," Lauren White (TS)

"Shame and Redemption in the Genders of Young Adolescent Boys," Richard Coble (RPC)


Angela Cowser serving as Lead Organizer for POGO

Sixth-year fellow Angela Cowser works as Lead Organizer for POGO (People of God Organized) in East Nashville.  POGO currently involves 10 congregations from five different denominations (UMC, PCUSA, PCA, Episcopal, and Missionary Baptist).
On September 15, POGO held a District 6 Candidates' Forum.  100 people turned out to hear candidates Peter Westerholm and Dave Rich respond to questions derived from POGO members on public education, unemployment, entrepreneurship, and fresh food accessibility issues.  


T+P Fellow Peter Kline on theology and pop culture

Second-year T&P fellow Peter Kline recently wrote two essays offering theological reads of pop-culture. The first is a paper he delivered in March at Princeton Theological Seminary for their conference "Religion in Popular Culture." His paper was titled "Christ-Haunted Ohio: The Spiritual and Theological Vision of Over the Rhine." The second is a piece for the journal Gaga Stigmata titled, "A Religion Against Itself: Lady Gaga, God, and Love." It can be found online here: 


Oxford University Press has published "Twig and Tafash: HIV/AIDS, Hip Hop, and Ugandan Female MC’s”

Oxford University Press has published "Twig and Tafash: HIV/AIDS, Hip Hop, and Ugandan Female MC’s”, co-authored by 5th-year fellow Gerald Liu and Associate Professor of Musicology/Ethnomusicology Gregory Barz in the volume The Culture of AIDS in Africa: Hope and Healing Through the Arts The manuscript follows the recent release of the CD Kampala Flow. Both projects arise from Gerald's 2008 fieldwork in Kampala, Uganda as a fellow of the Center for the Study of Religion and Culture. 


First cohort of fellows begins their externships

The first cohort of Fellows in Theology and Practice began their externships with the fall semester.  The externships are designed for fellows in their final year of study.  They provide a capstone to the whole T&P curriculum.  Each fellow's externship involves a year-long immersion in the work of a school known for excellence in teaching for ministry.  Externs teach one course each semester and engage in limited service work as they finish their dissertations.  A complete list of placements for this first year is below.

Jin Young Choi is at Columbia Theological Seminary
Angela Cowser is at Memphis Theological Seminary
Sean Hayden is at Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary
Kate Lassiter is at Loyola Institute for Pastoral Studies (Chicago)
Asante Todd is at Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary


PC(USA) notice of Asante Todd's externship  (September 7, 2011)

The Presbyterian News Service featured a short story about T&P fellow Asante Todd's externship at Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary.


Jennifer Williams writing for Oxford Handbook of the Prophets

Jennifer Williams has been invited to contribute an essay on Queer Readings of the Prophets for the forthcoming Oxford Handbook of the Prophets.   The invitation came following Jennifer's presentation of "A Feminist Reading and a Queer Re-reading of the "Cities' Destruction" in the Book of Jeremiahin the Writing/Reading Jeremiah section at the SBL's 2010 Annual Meeting.


Jennifer Freeman presents paper for the South Eastern Commission for the Study of Religion

"In March, first-year fellow Jennifer Freeman presented her paper "Epitaphios: the Divine Liturgy embodied" for the History of Christianity panel at the conference for the South Eastern Commission for the Study of Religion, held in Louisville, KY."


T+P program featured in article by Michael Jinkins

Michael Jinkins, President of Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary, wrote an article on "The End(s) of Theological Education" for the Resources for American Christianity website.  The article locates the Program in Theology and Practice in wider currents for reform in theological education.

Naomi Annandale completed the Volunteer Advocacy Program and began working as a volunteer advocate for parents of children with disabilities in their negotiations with schools, November, 20010.


Peter Kline's article in IJST

First-year fellow Peter Kline recently wrote an article entitled "Participation in God and the Nature of Christian Community: Robert Jenson and Eberhard Jüngel" for the International Journal of Systematic Theology.

Four of the T&P fellows - Jin Young Choi, Carolyn Davis, Daryl Ellis and Natalie Wigg-Stevenson - recently presented papers at a conference on "Attending to the Other: Critical Theory and Spiritual Practice" held by the International Society for Religion, Literature and Culture at Oxford University.  

Jin presented a paper entitled “Transnationality, Transcorporeality, and Spirituality” in a session on Postcolonialism. After the conference she also made a presentation for the Society, Religion and Belief Research Group at the University of Derby. Carolyn presented a paper for the Higher Education panel that offered a discursive model of the relationship between institutional ethos and diversity in the classroom, with special reference to theological education. Daryl and Natalie both presented on Modern Theology panels. Daryl’s paper, “Divine Dissociation: A ‘Monstrous Compound’ or the Frailty of Love?” examined the phenomenological similarities of violent trauma and self-giving love while reading the drama of Jesus’ journey from Gethsemane to the Cross. Natalie’s paper, “Christology as Crucible: Practicing Wisdom at the Intersection of Church and Academy” examined the practice of ecclesial teaching to explore the performative and transformative nature of Christian doctrine.


Kampala Flow

In September 2010 third-year fellow Gerald Liu and Blair School of Music Professor Gregory Barz released their compilation of East African Hip-Hop, Kampala Flow, on Lime Pulp Records.  The compact disc is a compilation of recordings Barz and Liu undertook during Gerald's summer 2008 fieldwork as a Center for the Study of Religion and Culture Fellow.  Gerald's article exploring the theological dimensions of HIV/AIDS messages rhymed by two female MC's is forthcoming in a book from Oxford University Press.


Gerald Liu Hired at Trevecca University

Gerald Liu was hired as adjunct faculty at Trevecca Nazarene University to create and teach a required course for all worship arts majors. "The Contextualization of Worship" combines readings in congregational analysis and critical theory with assigned fieldwork in local religious communities to introduce to students a variety of methods and contexts by which to understand worship.


Gerald Liu @ Societas Homiletica

Third-year fellow Gerald Liu was selected to present his essay, "Chin Toy, Yong-Seen-Sang, and Charlie Soong: Chinese American Proclaimers of the 19th Century" at the meeting of Societas Homiletica held at Yale University August 1-5, 2010.  Gerald was also welcomed into membership of Societas Homiletica, an academic and international society for teachers and researchers of preaching and homiletics.


Third-year Fellow Gerald Liu ordained as UMC Elder

Gerald Liu was ordained as an Elder in the Mississippi Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church on June 13th, 2010.


Ordination of Carolyn Davis

Third-year fellow Carolyn Davis was ordained a deacon in the United Methodist Church (Texas Annual Conference) in May 2010.


Fourth year fellows Asante Todd and Natalie Wigg-Stevenson invited to participate in Inter-faith conference on Human Rights

Asante and Natalie participated in a conference on “Clergy Beyond Borders: Human Rights in Judaism, Christianity and Islam” held at American University in Washington D.C. December 14-15, 2009.  U.S. and international imams, rabbis, and ministers joined scholars of Islam, Judaism and Christianity at the nation’s capital to discuss the role of religious communities in response to human rights issues. The conference addressed issues such as human trafficking and slavery in the 21st century, prisoner treatment in peace and war, the role of religion in the public square of a pluralist democracy, human rights after 9/11, and civil liberties of immigrants and (perceived) others. 

Clergy Beyond Borders invited Natalie and Asante based on work the two did with the National Religious Campaign Against Torture (NRCAT).  In 2008 Asante and Natalie offered reflections on an Emerging Scholars panel at NRCAT’s “A National Summit on Torture.”  This summit assembled religious leaders, scholars and public officials for critical dialogue on American practices of torture occurring over the last eight years.  The emerging scholars’ presentations have been included in the collected volume of proceedings from this conference in the forthcoming book, Religious Faith, Torture and Our National Soul, due for release from Mercer University Press in Winter/Spring, 2010.


Third-year fellow Jin Young Choi invited to participate in Asian Theological Summer Institute

At ATSI held at the Lutheran Theological Seminary in Philadelphia, May 26-30, Jin Young Choi presented her paper, "(Mis)understanding and Mystery in Mark." She examined a way of knowing through the embodied experience of mystery in the Gospel and explored the possibility of affirming the subjectivity of people living in the margins of the existing power structure, while developing a model of Asian and Asian American biblical hermeneutics and employing interdisciplinary approaches. The Institute was initiated by the Henry Luce Foundation to promote cultural awareness and theological discourse of Asians and Asian Americans who are engaged in theological education at the doctoral level.


Third-year fellow Kate Lassiter interviewed by local media

Third year fellow Kate Lassiter was interviewed by local NPR and NBC affiliates and quoted in The Tennessean regarding the economic and health benefits associated with a local rezoning policy introduced by Councilman Jason Holleman. The Davidson County Code currently prohibits cultivation of agricultural products for commercial sale within the urban service district. Changes to the law would allow for the sale of fruits, vegetables, and ornamentals produced in commercial and industrial brownzones as well as backyards.


T&P Fellows hired for translation

Fellows Sean Hayden (Theological Studies) and Gerald Liu (Homiletics and Liturgics) were hired to translate Jürgen Moltmann's commentary on the encyclical, 'Salvi Spe' from Pope Benedict XVI. The translation, entitled 'Horizons of Hope: A Critique of 'Salvi Spe'' can be found in The Christian Century, 5/20/2008. Vol. 125 Issue 10, 31-33.


Third-year fellow Angela Cowser wins Fulbright Scholarship

Congratulations to Angela Cowser for her selection as a Fulbright Scholar to Namibia! Angela first traveled to Namibia with Vanderbilt Divinity School’s Global Immersion Seminar. She served as a Teaching Assistant in the seminar as part of her work for the Program in Theology and Practice. The program requires fellows to serve in an “integrative” T.A.ship, and Angela chose this one.

The seminar brought Angela into contact with a variety of leaders in the Namibian government, international NGOs, and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Namibia [ELCRN]. “At the end of our stay,” Angela said, “one of the ELCRN pastor-guides asked if I would consider returning to Namibia to teach English. I said that I would try. In the fall of 2008 I submitted a Fulbright application to return to Namibia to study as part of my dissertation research on the role of religion and religious institutions in postcolonial economic development.

Angela’s application was strengthened by courses in ethnography, qualitative research, practical theology and social theory for her home area – Ethics and Society – and the Program in Theology and Practice. A summer of fieldwork for Vanderbilt’s Center for the Study of Religion and Culture helped her develop her skills in these areas.

Recipients of the Fulbright are selected on the basis of their demonstrated leadership potential as well as their outstanding research and academic achievement. Administered by the U.S. Department of State, the Fulbright Program was established by Congress in 1946 with the intent to “enable the government of the United States to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries.”



T+P Fellow Ben Anthony selected as preacher for Day1

Ben Anthony, a member of the 2009 cohort of Fellows in Theology and Practice, will be featured as a preacher on the multimedia non-profit ministry Day1. His sermons entitled "Folding Screens and Forgiveness," "A Visitor, a Mapmaker, and a Banquet," and "Neither Heaven nor Hell" will be broadcast on April 26, May 3, and May 10, respectively. All are available in text and audio on the Day1 website . Congratulations, Ben!



Congratulations to the 2009 class of Fellows in Theology and Practice

Jennifer Pouya - History and Critical Theories of Religion
Ben Anthony - Homiletics and Liturgics
Bridgett Green - New Testament and Early Christianity
Myounghun Yun - Religion, Psychology, and Culture
Daryl Ellis - Theological Studies



Life Abundant: A Conference in Christian Practical Theology

On February 26-28, 2009 Vanderbilt Divinity School welcomed “Theological Education for Life Abundant: A Conference in Christian Practical Theology.” The conference was sponsored by the Valparaiso Project on the Education and Formation of People in Faith, a project of the Lilly Endowment based at Valparaiso University. The vision for theological education articulated in For Life Abundant (Bass and Dykstra, eds.) served as a starting point for the conference and as a regular touchstone in the proceedings.

The conference brought together scholars from a wide range of disciplines, institutions, and traditions to think together about the meaning, purpose, and practice of theological education. Charles Marsh of the University of Virginia offered a keynote address. Plenary panels featured presentations from Dorothy Bass, Brad Braxton, Charles Foster, Willie Jennings, Charles Marsh, Ted Smith, David Daniels, Edward Farley, Bonnie Miller-McLemore, Nadine Pence, John Witvliet, Craig Dykstra, Barbara Holmes, James Hudnut-Beumler, and Mary Ann Moman. Morning prayer was coordinated by Robin Jensen and led by Gerald Liu, Brandon McCormack, and Natalie Wigg-Stevenson, all fellows in the Program in Theology and Practice.

Workshops at the conference were offered by Thomas G. Long, Daisy L. Machado and Samuel Cruz, Barbara Rossing and Benjamin Stewart, Christian Scharen and Eileen Campbell-Reed, Mary McClintock Fulkerson, and Lynne Westfield. Conference participants also broke out into small groups organized by discipline for conversations around sample syllabi – a practice many participants named as the most valuable part of the whole event.

For more information on the conference, and a partial posting of the proceedings, please see the website of the Valparaiso Project on the Education and Formation of People in Faith.



T+P program featured in The Presbyterian Outlook's analysis of theological education (click title to view article)


Congratulations to the 2008 class of Fellows in Theology and Practice

Naomi Annandale - Religion, Psychology and Culture
Carolyn Davis - Theological Studies
Sarah Sanderson-Doughty - Theological Studies
Lisa Thompson - Homiletics and Liturgics
Jennifer Williams - Hebrew Bible and Ancient Israel



Gathering of practice-related doctoral programs
From Duke, Emory, and Vanderbilt
May 1-3, 2008

In May of 2008 Vanderbilt hosted a conference that brought together students and faculty from Duke’s Th.D. program, Emory’s Concentration in Religious Practices and Practical Theology, and Vanderbilt’s Program in Theology and Practice. Plenary conversations focused on syllabi for core courses and the role of “practice” and “practical theology” in each program. Small groups considered samples of writing from each student within the larger context of that student’s vocation.

People from each school reported learning more about their own program even as they learned about the programs from other schools. Participants followed up with individual essays and conversations with others from their home institutions that should help translate some of what they learned at the conference into concrete program developments. We had a great time – and so we hope to gather at least these three schools again in two years.

Participants included Mary McClintock Fulkerson, Randy Maddox, Laceye Waner, Jeff Conlin-Miller, Melanie Dobson Hughes and Heather Vacek (all from Duke); Elizabeth Bounds, Michael Brown, Letitia Campbell, David King, AnneMarie Mingo, and Joshua Thomas (from Emory); and Patout Burns, Nicholas Head, Bonnie Miller-McLemore, Ted Smith, Brad Daugherty, Brandon McCormack, and Natalie Wigg-Stevenson (from Vanderbilt).

Thanks to the Valparaiso Project on the Education and Formation of People in Faith, which funded the gathering. And special thanks to the Valparaiso Project’s Dorothy Bass and Doretta Kurzinski for wise and generous help in designing and putting on the conference.



Bonnie Miller-McLemore and Ted Smith describe the origins, substance, and hopes of the program in this essay for the Christian Century .

Copyright 2008 Christian Century . Reproduced by permission from the February 26, 2008 issue of the Christian Century . Subscriptions: $49/year from P.O. Box 378, Mt. Morris, IL 61054. 1-800-208-4097



Congratulations to the 2007 Fellows in Theology and Practice:

Brad Daugherty - Historical Studies
Gerald Liu - Homiletics and Liturgics
Brandon McCormack - Homiletics and Liturgics
Elizabeth Madden - Religion, Psychology, and Culture
Kelly Whitcomb - Hebrew Bible



The Association of Practical Theology holds its biennial conference at Vanderbilt University.