December 2014 | In This Issue
On Being a God-bearer
Partnership Brings Seminary Expertise to Minnesota
January 2015 Intensive Courses in Chicago
Comments? Feedback?
Spring Convocation in Chicago
January Deadlines for DMin Study Beginning June 2015
Register Now for June 2015 Leadership Institute
Apply Now for Spring 2015 at Bexley Seabury
Community News
Join Our Mailing List
Join Others Supporting the 2015 Annual Fund
On Being a God-bearer
An Advent Meditation from President Ferlo 

To be a God-bearer: that has been a challenge for all of us in the past several weeks, where we have seen the most vulnerable among us targeted in the streets, where stories of torture, cover-up and vicious bureaucratic incompetence have made us wonder whether humanity is even redeemable. Who are the God-bearers among us? To be a God-bearer: that is the identity that every Christian in this season is being challenged to embrace, an identity mirrored in the image of the Virgin Mother who, in the ancient prayer, puts down the mighty from their thrones, raises up the humble and meek, and shows us the fruit of her womb in this Jesus, the source and goal of all our desires.


Read the entire meditation 


Partnership Brings Seminary Expertise to Minnesota

Collaborating on faith formation and leadership development


On Nov. 19, 2014, the Episcopal Church in Minnesota (ECMN) and Bexley Seabury announced a partnership to bring the resources and expertise of the seminary to parish communities in Minnesota. The program includes the following:

  • Formation and leadership development initiatives among Ojibwe and Dakota communities
  • Scholarships for ECMN participants to attend the Bexley Seabury Leadership Institute, a three-day program on nonprofit management in collaboration with Northwestern University in Chicago
  • An initiative to learn from the experiences of emergent congregations in the Episcopal Church and to nurture the development of new congregations in Minnesota

President Ferlo noted that both ECMN and Bexley Seabury share a "willingness to work collaboratively, to try new approaches, and to find ways to ensure that the best in Christian formation and training are available to people and communities that are sometimes overlooked."


January 2015 Intensive Courses in Chicago

Registration deadline: Dec. 26, 2014 







Anglican Liturgy & Music: Development and Theology 

January 12-16, 2015

Milner Seifert and Elise Feyerherm offer an introduction to the principles and practices of Anglican worship with particular focus on the Episcopal Church.


Anglican Theology and Ethics

January 5-9, 2015

Ellen Wondra teaches a course on the breadth and variety of theologies and ethics in the worldwide Anglican Communion as well as "classic" Anglican theologians and moral theologians.


Congregational Systems 

January 12-16, 2015

Emlyn Ott of Trinity Lutheran Seminary teaches an introduction to systems and organizational theory in relation to congregations and other church groups. Students will explore issues in organizational and ministry development as well as strategies for systemic change.


Diversity & Context

Jan 19-23, 2015 

Eric Law of the Kaleidoscope Institute will help students increase their intercultural competency for congregational development in a diverse and changing world.


Non-profit Management and Community Development:
January 5-9, 2015

Suzi Holding and Jody Kretzmann will explore how asset-based community development and greater neighborhood involvement can breathe new life into congregations at a time when many lay and ordained leaders are struggling with shrinking budgets and exploding social needs in their communities.


As always, all Bexley Seabury courses are open to anystudent for academic credit, continuing education credit or personal enrichment (no credit/audit). Learn More and Register 
Comments?  Feedback?
Your views are always welcome

Bexley Seabury Seminary is accredited by the Commission on Accrediting of the Association of Theological Schools, 10 Summit Park Drive, Pittsburgh PA 15275-1110. The following degree programs are approved by the Commission on Accrediting: Doctor of Ministry and Master of Divinity. We are receiving a comprehensive visit from the Association of Theological Schools from February 22-27, 2015. As part of our visit, we welcome and comments or feedback concerning the school's qualifications for accreditation. Please send any comments to at Academic Dean Tom Ferguson 

Spring Convocation in Chicago

Save the date: April 29, 2015


Seabury-Western and Bexley Seabury alumni, faculty and friends will gather at St. James Common in downtown Chicago on Wednesday, April 29, 2015, for Spring Convocation. The one-day celebration of our journey, as Christians and as a learning and leadership community, is an opportunity to reconnect through prayer, study and fellowship. Highlights include:

  • A rare opportunity to view historic prayer books and Bibles from the collection of Michael Morgan, including the 1661 Jeremy Taylor volume of the Book of Common Prayer, which substituted the Beatitudes for the Nicene Creed as the standard of Christian belief.
  • Afternoon workshops leading into keynote address, Evensong and reception.
Keynote Speaker Scott Gunn
The keynote address by Scott Gunn, executive director of Forward Movement, "From Sinai to Cupertino: Technology, Social Media and Evangelism," will consider how people of faith
have always used advances in technology to communicate, study God's word and share
the Gospel. 

Talk to Conrad Selnick, vice president for advancement and church relations for more information.

January Deadlines for DMin Study Beginning June 2015

Programs in congregational development, preaching


Apply now for June 2015 admission to Bexley Seabury's doctor of ministry programs in congregational development and preaching. The flexible programs combine independent study, online work with fellow students and instructors, and intensive courses in Chicago.

DMin in Congregational Development
The three-year program enables students to develop the exceptional leadership skills and theological grounding necessary for innovative and effective congregational ministry. The priority admission deadline, with a waiver of the application fee, is Jan. 15. Learn more and apply online 

DMin in Preaching

This ecumenical program fosters the curiosity, openness to the Holy Spirit, and synthesis of imagination and reason needed to proclaim the Word of God. It is offered in collaboration with six other Chicago-area seminaries as the Association of Chicago Theological Schools (ACTS) DMin in Preaching Program. The deadline to apply is Jan. 31. Learn more and apply online  

Register Now for June 2015 Leadership Institute

Leading change, understanding cultural shifts, building effective teams  


Our fifth annual Leadership Institute, a three-day program with the Center for Nonprofit Management, Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, will take place June 15-17, 2015. This seminar trains clergy and lay leaders to apply best practices in nonprofit management to congregational programs, leadership and services.  


Apply now for this popular course. Space is limited and the course has filled quickly in past years.  Learn more and register

Apply Now for Spring 2015 at Bexley Seabury

Courses offered in Chicago, Columbus, Indianapolis


Classes are offered as a semester-long course, an intensive one-week session, or a three-weekend series. As always, all Bexley Seabury courses are open to any student for academic credit, continuing education credit or personal enrichment (no credit/audit). Register for courses by Jan. 28, 2015.


Strategies for Teaching the Bible

March 6-7, April 17-18, May 8-9 in Indianapolis

John Dally will present strategies for translating knowledge of the history and content of the Bible in ways that are accessible and that lead to personal and communal transformation. Learn More


Anglican Theology and Ethics

Feb. 13-14, Mar. 6-7, Apr. 17-18 in Columbus

In this course Jason Fout will focus on the breadth and variety of theologies and ethics in the worldwide Anglican Communion as well as "classic" Anglican theologians and moral theologians. Learn more

 Global Anglicanism 

 Feb. 27-28, Apr. 10-11, May 1-2 in Chicago

Through the Anglican tradition of thoughtful theological reflection and dialogue, Ellen Wondra will help students explore how baptismal living informs the response of individuals and the church to contemporary issues. Learn more  


Anglican Liturgy and Music: Theology and Practice

Mar. 13-14, Apr. 24-25, May 15-16 in Columbus

Victor Conrado and Milner Seifert will lead an examination of the theology, principles and practices of worship in the Episcopal Church, according to the 1979 Book of Common Prayer and other resources. The course includes a practicum through which students learn how to conduct worship. Learn More


Christ and Atonement

Semester course: Tues. and Thurs., 10:45 a.m.-12:00 p.m. in Columbus

Jason Fout will lead a study of classic and contemporary Christian perspectives on the person and work of Jesus Christ, including the historical development of the doctrine of the two natures of Christ; the meaning of Christ's life, ministry, suffering on the cross, death resurrection and ascension; and the shape and meaning of the "good news" of Christ for today. Learn More

Community News


Nikki Elizabeth Louise Seger (Bexley '14) was ordained to the priesthood on Dec. 13 by Bishop Wendell Gibbs, Episcopal Diocese of Michigan. The ordination was at the Cathedral Church of St. Paul in Detroit. (Dioc of Michigan photo)




Rod Reinhart (Colgate Rochester, Bexley Hall Crozer '75) is the 2014 recipient of the S. Michael Yasutake Peace and Justice Award presented by the Episcopal Diocese of Chicago Peace and Justice Committee. The award acknowledges an individual's contributions to a mission of peacemaking, human rights and social justice. Rod is vicar of St. Clement's Episcopal Church in Harvey and St. Joseph and St. Aidan's Episcopal Church in Blue Island - both southern suburbs of Chicago. His leadership in these communities includes services for homeless military veterans, an effective anti-hunger pantry and community garden program that feeds as many as 300 families monthly, support of fair and honest community business practices, and advocacy for safe neighborhoods. Mike Yasutake (Seabury-Western '50), who died in 2001, was a priest in the Diocese of Chicago for 51 years and a voice of conscience for the Episcopal Church as well as many national and international communities. Mike's life work of justice ministries was greatly influenced by his family's internment during World War II. 

In Memoriam 
Former Trustee Dan Panshin Dies 

Dan Panshin Former Seabury-Western Trustee Daniel A. Panshin, 76, of St. Paul, Minnesota, died Nov. 17 in St. Paul.   

His obituary can be found here


Bishop Bill Wiedrich Dies in Michigan

The Rt. Rev. William Wiedrich (Bexley Hall 1956, DD 2003), retired Suffragan Bishop of Chicago, died Wednesday, Nov. 26 in Michigan. He served as Bishop Suffragan from 1991 to 1996. He is shown here at an Ecumenical HIV/AIDS Service in Chicago in the mid 1990's.



Join Others Supporting the 2015 Annual Fund

A message from Conrad Selnick, vice president of advancement and church relations


In Chicago the altar, font and lectern in our chapel bear evergreen sprigs. In Columbus classes have ended for the semester. We are preparing for the January term. We also steadily receive gifts to the Annual Fund.


I am gratified to report that significantly more people have contributed to Bexley Seabury since the 2015 Annual Fund opened last July. Compared to last year at this point, we have heard from about twice as many alumni. Trustees, former trustees, other friends, and congregations are also well represented. Thank you to everyone who has been a part of this.


We had a chance to visit with many of you in the last few months as we attended diocesan annual conventions and made trips to various cities. It is a delight to see you and hear about your lives and ministries.


Whether the sign for you is a swaddled newborn, a super nova over Bethlehem or truths you ponder in your heart, may the grace of the Incarnation, Emmanuel, be with you in this holy season.


As you plan for year-end gifts, please consider a donation to the 2015 Annual Fund.  

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