The Chapel of the Good Shepherd was packed with dignitaries, faculty, the Board of Trustees, current seminarians, alumni and friends. The 2019 Paddock lectures were concluding not only by conferring Honorary Doctorates to former Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams and our Presiding Bishop, Michael Curry. Anticipation was building to witness a sermon by Curry, whose preaching has made him beloved to a worldwide audience.
The Director of Marketing, Recruitment and Admissions is the external face of General Seminary among prospective students of all types. The right person for this position must be energized by theological education, the work of the church, and the education and formation of Christian leaders, lay and ordained.
Two primates of the Anglican Communion made a historic visit in New York City yesterday on the campus of General Seminary. The Most Reverend Rowan Williams, former Archbishop of Canterbury and the Most Reverend Michael Curry, Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church both attended the seminary’s Convocation, receiving the degree of honoris causa. Williams lectured to the community earlier in the day and Curry preached at Evensong.
A few years ago, I saw a woman falling down on her knees in a church’s thrift shop as she found a pair of trainers on sale. She cried loudly, “thank you Lord! I needed a pair of shoes and here they are! Oh thank you, thank you Jesus!” seeing this, another woman shopper said, “I used to be able to pray like that.”
Nobody about to be baptized promises to make regular retreats. Neither does anybody about to be ordained. The annual parochial report wants to know your Average Sunday Attendance, the number of children in your church school, how your number of baptisms stacks up against your number of funerals, and the vector of your balance sheet, but it does not demand to know whether or not the parish schedules retreats or quiet days for its members, or keeps them informed about opportunities for these experiences in other communities.
Rowan Williams, the former Archbishop of Canterbury, will lead “45 Years of ‘Being Christian’: Rowan Williams at General Seminary” in the seminary’s annual Paddock Lectures. The presentation will feature his bestselling catechetical work, Being Christian: Baptism, Bible, Eucharist, Prayer in addition to his reflections on a life of ministry, academia, and ecclesiastical leadership.
When asked about the importance of this conference, Stace responded, “Religious institutions have an opportunity to save lives.” She went on to cite several studies that indicated the significant decrease of depression and suicide rates among transgender people and discovering a genuinely affirming religious community.