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CDSP News

Laurel Johnston mdThe Rev. Dr. W. Mark Richardson, dean and president of Church Divinity School of the Pacific, announced today that the Rev. Laurel Johnston (MDiv '06) will join Church Divinity School of the Pacific on October 1, as director of alumni affairs and major gifts officer.

"Welcoming Laurel home is a great joy for all of us at CDSP," said Richardson. "Her gifts in encouraging stewardship and forming networks will be a great complement to our strong new advancement effort, and her commitment to CDSP's distinctive approach to preparing students for ministry will make her a great addition to our team."

"I'm delighted to return to CDSP in this role," said Johnston. "As a seminarian, I experienced CDSP as a rich environment to explore and expand my sense of call. It was there I forged deep bonds of friendships in Christ and I look forward to supporting and strengthening the web of relationships that have grown out of the giftedness of this community—gifts that continue to bless the wider church."

Church Divinity School of the Pacific has been awarded a grant of $500,000 by the Patricia D. & William B. Smullin Foundation, a family foundation based in Berkeley, California. The funds will support CDSP's upgrading of information technology, human resources, accounting, student services, financial aid and registration systems.

"This extraordinarily generous grant makes it possible for CDSP to develop and implement systems that will make our life together more efficient, affordable, and consistent with the practices of 21st century institutions," said the Very Rev. W. Mark Richardson, CDSP's dean and president. "These new systems will permit us to participate in the Graduate Theological Union and the wider church in more sustainable ways."

William B. Smullin was a communications pioneer who introduced commercial radio, television and cable television to Southern Oregon and Northern California. He established the foundation, which supports higher education, health education and the Episcopal Church in Northern California and Southern Oregon, in 1990.

Church Divinity School of the Pacific/Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary

This Old Testament faculty position, housed at the Church Divinity School of the Pacific and shared by Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary, will address the evolving curricular needs of both schools while having primary administrative and advising responsibilities at the Church Divinity School of the Pacific. The successful candidate will teach foundational and elective courses at both the M.Div. and Ph.D. levels in the ecumenical and interreligious Graduate Theological Union, and enable students to draw from the wisdom of their particular traditions and articulate the distinctiveness of those traditions.

We seek a scholar in early career who bridges the line between the academy and the church, and an engaging, dynamic teacher who can draw students into the task of relating biblical texts to Christian life and ministry in the world. We seek candidates who employ hermeneutical methodologies that draw out the relation of sacred texts to living questions found in contemporary contexts, such as postcolonial, feminist, and secular post-Enlightenment understandings.

Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary/Church Divinity School of the Pacific

This faculty position in the area of social ethics, housed at Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary and shared by Church Divinity School of the Pacific, will address evolving curricular needs of both schools while having primary administrative and advising responsibilities at Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary. The successful candidate will teach foundational and elective courses that include students from both schools, as well from other schools and centers of the ecumenical and interreligious Graduate Theological Union (GTU), and enable students to draw from the wisdom and distinctiveness of their own traditions, with particular attention to Anglican/Episcopal and Lutheran emphases. In addition, there is the possibility of teaching in the PhD program of the Graduate Theological Union, contingent on time restrictions and invitation of the Core Doctoral Faculty.

Dear Friends:

Late last week, Professor Lizette Larson-Miller let me know that she will conclude her time at CDSP in January 2015 after teaching at the intersession. I am grateful to her for her 12 years of service, both in the classroom and as dean of All Saints Chapel, and I am glad that we will have the rest of the semester to appreciate her ministry and say goodbye.

I don't yet know who will assume Professor Larson-Miller's duties as dean of the chapel, but we feel confident that we can use the remainder of the semester to assess how best to continue her good work. I will keep you informed about our plans. As you know, Academic Dean Ruth Meyers and Professor Emeritus Louis Weil are both renowned liturgical scholars, and I have every confidence that CDSP will continue to be known as a center of excellent liturgical teaching and training.

We find ourselves in the midst of several faculty transitions this semester, and although we would not have chosen to bid farewell to anyone who is leaving, we now have several opportunities to invite new faculty to join us and to add expertise that will help us learn more about leading a changing church.

This fall, CDSP debuts a new online bookstore through Amazon. Visit the bookstore online to see books for Fall 2014 CDSP courses.

CDSP has a new Moodle site for students and faculty.