Inauguration of Lallene J. Rector

Lallene Rector A copyOn Saturday, March 1, 2014 Dr. Lallene J. Rector was inaugurated as president of Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary in a ceremony at First United Methodist Church in Evanston, Illinois. She is the first woman and first layperson to be appointed president of Garrett-Evangelical.

The two-day inaugural event started on Friday, February 28th, with the inaugural celebration. Scholars and activists, Dr. Matthew Sleet, Dr. Timothy Eberhart, Officer Loyce E. Spells II, Dr. Angela Coswer, Dr. Andrew Sund, and Dr. Luis Rivera, participated in a lively and thought-provoking panel discussion, Establishing Justice at the City Gate: A Public Theology Conversation. The panelists tackled three key public issues: violence, the environment, and immigration. Later that evening, the Inaugural Concert of Celebration featured Dr. Barry Wenger, organist at First United Methodist Church at the Chicago Temple, Rev. Dr. Cynthia A. Wilson, dean of students at Garrett-Evangelical, and the Second Baptist Church of Evanston Choir.

Inauguration Day, Saturday, March 1st, began with a Service of Blessing in the morning at First United Methodist Church in Evanston, Illinois, and was held in honor of Dr. Rector, the seminary's first layperson appointed as president. Rev. Dr. Molly T. Marshall, President of Central Baptist Theological Seminary, delivered the sermon, titled "Stewards of the Mysteries." Bishop Sally Dyck of the Northern Illinois Conference of The United Methodist Church, along with four other United Methodist Bishops, offered the blessing upon Dr. Rector as she began her presidency.

The Inauguration Ceremony took place Saturday afternoon, and featured a number of special guests. Past presidents of Garrett-Evangelical, including Dr. K. James Stein, President of Evangelical Theological Seminary (1972-1974), along with President Emeritus Neal Fisher, who served as president from 1980 to 2001, and President Emeritus Philip A. Amerson, president from 2006-2013, offered words of congratulations and blessings to President Rector during the Transfer of the Emblem. Dr. Morton O. Schapiro, President of Northwestern University, during his words of greetings said, "Garrett remains a beacon in the campus of Northwestern University." At the end of the ceremony, Dr. Schapiro offered a blessing Hebrew. Representatives from the community, local church, staff, academy at large, alumni and trustees, the general church, students, and faculty gave charges to the new president, offering words of support and encouragement while also listing their hopes and expectations of President Rector.

The inaugural ceremony also featured the Korean Student Choir at Garrett-Evangelical, who performed "Eoyadiya, Be Thankful" and the Celebration Choir, representing the combined talents of singers from Garrett-Evangelical, local churches, and the community-at-large, who sang "Order My Steps." Both groups received a rousing standing ovation for their spectacular performances.

In her inaugural address, titled, "A Place in God's Purpose," President Rector acknowledged that she stands on the shoulders of so many others. President Rector challenged the seminary to be a servant seminary to the church and world and to continue to strengthen its connection with Northwestern University, the Evanston and Chicago areas, and the wider church community. Recognizing the complexities of theological education in the 21st century and the need for the seminary to practice radical hospitality, President Rector also highlighted issues of justice and inclusion, "Let's get ourselves out of this lukewarm place of a legal, minimalist, non-discriminating stance. We can do so much better than that." President Rector concluded her address saying, "There is nothing else at this time to which I would rather give my life energy. We will do what we need to do along the way to protect the future. We will do it with God's help and wisdom and with a spirit of servanthood for the 160 year old school we love. The school we are privileged to serve.  May God guide and bless our efforts and may Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary continue to flourish."

Photo Album

 

  • Establishing Justice at the City Gate: A Public Theology Conversation
    Establishing Justice at the City Gate: A Public Theology Conversation
    Held in the Chapel of the Unnamed Faithful on February 28, the Inaugural Celebration began with a panel discussion on public theology and featured six experts who spoke on violence, the environment, and immigration.
  • Establishing Justice at the City Gate: The Environment
    Establishing Justice at the City Gate: The Environment
    Dr. Tim Eberhart, Assistant Professor of Theology and Ecology, speaking on the environmental challenges we are facing and how people of faith are to respond.
  • Firsts at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary
    Firsts at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary
    As the first woman and layperson to serve as president, Dr. Rector joins an impressive list of firsts in Garrett-Evangelical's 160 year-old history.
  • Inaugural Concert of Celebration
    Inaugural Concert of Celebration
    Held in the Chapel of the Unnamed Faithful on Friday, February 28, the Inaugural Concert featured Dr. Barry Wenger, organist at First United Methodist Church at the Chicago Temple, Rev. Dr. Cynthia A. Wilson, dean of students at Garrett-Evangelical, and the Second Baptist Church of Evanston Choir.
  • Inaugural Concert of Celebration
    Inaugural Concert of Celebration
    Dr. Charles Cosgrove on the trombone and Rev. Dr. Cynthia Wilson performing a medley of songs with the theme of hope.
  • Service of Blessing
    Service of Blessing
    The Service of Blessing was held in honor of Dr. Lallene J. Rector, the seminary's first layperson appointed as president, on the morning of Inauguration Day, March 1, 2014.
  • Service of Blessing
    Service of Blessing
    Rev. Dr. Molly T. Marshall, President of Central Baptist Theological Seminary, delivered the sermon, titled "Stewards of the Mysteries."
  • Service of Blessing
    Service of Blessing
    Bishop Sally Dyck of the Northern Illinois Conference of The United Methodist Church, along with four other United Methodist Bishops, offering the blessing upon Dr. Rector as she begins her presidency.
  • Service of Blessing
    Service of Blessing
    President Rector listening to the Choral Blessing performed by the choir from First United Methodist Church at the Chicago Temple.
  • Inauguration Service
    Inauguration Service
    Rev. Dr. Mark Fowler welcoming all to the Inauguration Service on behalf of the Inaugural Task Force and Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary.
  • Inauguration Service
    Inauguration Service
    The Korean Student Choir performing "Eoyadiya, Be Thankful." Directed by Chi-Yong Oh, the choir received a standing ovation for their performance.
  • Inauguration Service
    Inauguration Service
    Mr. Jerre Stead, Chairperson for the Board of Trustees, officially inaugurating Dr. Lallene Rector as President of Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary.
  • Inauguration Service
    Inauguration Service
    During the Transfer of Emblem, Dr. K. James Stein, President of Evangelical Theological Seminary (1972-1974), along with President Emeritus Neal Fisher, who served as president from 1980 to 2001, and President Emeritus Philip A. Amerson, president from 2006-2013, offered words of congratulations and blessings to Dr. Lallene Rector.
  • Inauguration Service
    Inauguration Service
    President Lallene J. Rector delivering her Inaugural Address titled, "A Place in God's Purpose."
  • Inauguration Service
    Inauguration Service
    Representing the combined talents of singers from Garrett-Evangelical, local churches, and the community-at-large, the Celebration Choir sang "Order My Steps." Directed by Dean Cynthia A. Wilson, the Celebration Choir received a standing ovation for their Anthem.
  • Inauguration Service
    Inauguration Service
    Dr. Morton O. Schapiro, President of Northwestern University, offering a blessing in Hebrew. During his words of greetings earlier in the service President Schapiro said, "Garrett remains a beacon in the campus of Northwestern University."
  • Inauguration Service
    Inauguration Service
    Bishop Linda Lee of The United Methodist Church, who is currently serving as Bishop-in-Residence at Garrett-Evangelical, offered the Benediction of the Inauguration Service.

Videos

 

Inaug Video
 
     

 

 

 

The Inauguration of Lallene J. Rector
March 1, 2014
First United Methodist Church
Evanston, Illinois

         
Service of Blessing2      

 

 

 

Service of Blessing
March 1, 2014
First United Methodist Church
Evanston, Illinois

         
     









Establishing Justice at the City Gate: A Public Theology Conversation

February 28, 2014
Chapel of the Unnamed Faithful
Evanston, IL

         
       










Inaugural Celebration Concert

February 28, 2014
Chapel of the Unnamed Faithful
Evanston, IL

 

#GIVINGTUESDAY Resources

Garrett-Evangelical has partnered with the organization #GivingTuesday to maximize giving this holiday season.  Every gift given to Garrett-Evangelical's annual fund on Tuesday, December 3rd will be matched dollar for dollar, up to $25,000!  This is great news but it's only great if people know about it.  This is where you can help!  Below you will find a variety of resources to share between now and December 3rd.  As we get closer to #GIVINGTUESDAY we will be addiing additional resources including a video of our students titled, "This is about . . ."  To get you started here are a few tips:

  1. There's no wrong way to share!  Cut and copy or customize the message.  The choice is yours.
  2. Be sure to use hashtags and tag Garrett-Evangelical:  #givingtuesday #GETSmatch @garrettseminary
  3. We encourage you to share these messages on any social media platform you use and to share often.

Thank you for your willingness to be an ambassador on behalf of Garrett-Evangelical!

Tweets

Facebook and Google+

  • While Black Friday and Cyber Monday may be good for the economy but here's a day that's good for the soul! Today is #GivingTuesday and you can support my beloved seminary, Garrett-Evangelical.  Every dollar given will be matched, up to $25,000!  Give online at www.garrett.edu/giving

  • A donor is matching every gift that’s given to my school today - up to $25,000! I know gifts to Garrett-Evangelical are important, without them I wouldn’t be able to fund my theological education! Support my school on Dec. 3 by making a gift of any size at www.garrett.edu/giving

  • Every year, my school, Garrett-Evangelical, trains people to be pastors and religious leaders who make a difference in their communities. This can only happen because of the vast network of people who support its mission.  Give today and your gift will be matched, dollar for dollar.  Give now at www.garrett.edu/giving.

  • Seminary education is very important to me, and I’m proud of the education I’m receiving at Garrett-Evangelical.  You can help support my school by making a gift of any size at www.garrett.edu/giving.  All gifts received today will be matched dollar for dollar, up to $25,000!

  • If it weren’t for my scholarship I wouldn’t be able to attend seminary. For that I am truly grateful! This year on #GivingTuesday, an anonymous donor has pledged to match every gift made to my seminary, Garrett-Evangelical. So if you make a gift, it’ll be automatically doubled! Give now at www.garrett.edu/giving.

Visual Aids

Status updates and tweets with photos get noticed more often then those without. See the webpage below for visual aids to accompany your tweet or status. 

http://www.garrett.edu/component/content/article/87-about-us/standalone/1474-givingtuesday-images

 

Board of Trustees

Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary is proud to have a diverse board of trustees tasked with ensuring the seminary fullfills its purpose as outlined in the bylaws.

The mission and purpose of the seminary is the share in the Church's task of equipping the whole people of God and providing leadership in Christ's ministry of personal and social transformation.  The seminary:

  • Prepares persons for ordained and lay ministries in and through the Church
  • Prepares persons for university and seminary teaching in theological disciplines
  • Provides theological research and reflection for the Church

Trustees

The Honorable John G.Baker
Dr. James B. Beddow
Mr. James B. Blue
Ms. Juanita Bryant, Esq.
Rev. Dr. Judith Bunyi
Dr. J. Robert Burkhart
Rev. Michelle A. Cobb
Mr. Roger H. Cummings
Rev. Bonnie E. Draeger
Ms. Anne Driscoll
Bishop Sally Dyck
Mr. Gregory J. Eaton
Rev. Laurie Haller
Mr. Lee Hoekstra
Dr. Marianne Inman
Rev. Sara L. Isbell

           

Rev. Ouk-Yean Kim Jueng
Rev. Dr. Byoung Sam Kim
Mr. James W. Lumberg
Rev. Dr. Tracy Smith Malone
Mrs. Harriet McCabe
Mr. Robert Merrilees
Ms. Kyle MacKenzie Nowell
Mr. Robert Phillips
Ms. Dorinda L. Pounds
Mr. John E. Sampson
Mr. Thomas C. Scott
Mr. Jerre L. Stead
Rev. Dr. Carlyle Fielding Stewart III
Bishop Julius C. Trimble
Mrs. Billie Wilbur
Mr. Theodore I. Yi



Affiliate Trustees

Rev. Philip Blackwell
Rev. Robert Fuquay
Mr. Andrew Vorbrich
Mr. William White
Rev. Dr. Joseph Keith Zimmerman



LIFE Trustees

Rev. Thomas E. Babler
Mr. Clifford O. Bath, Jr.
Mr. Donald N. Boyce
Rev. Jeanette S. Buys
Bishop Philip R. Cousin
Mrs. Judith V. Crain
Dr. Marjorie A. Engelman
Dr. James W. Hook
Ms. Chrys Hyde
Bishop Charles W. Jordan
Mr. William J. Lawson
Ms. Marilyn Magee
Mr. J. Michael McBride
Mrs. Barbara Milnor
Bishop Donald A. Ott
Bishop Sharon Z. Rader
Mr. Howard Steele
Rev. Phylemon D. Titus

The 157th Commencement at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary

Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary is excited to celebrate its 157th Commencement on May 16, 2014. This year's commencement speaker will be Rev. Dr. Justo L. González. Garrett-Evangelical will also be honoring two distiguished alums and over 90 graduates. Graduation events begin with Senior Chapel on May 15th at 7:00 p.m. in the Chapel of the Unnamed Faithful at Garrett-Evangelical. Commencement is on May 16th at 10:00 a.m. at First United Methodist Church with a reception to follow.

LIVE WEBCAST SCHEDULE
For those unable to be in Evanston, Illinois for Commencement a live webcast will be available at www.garrett.edu. The webcast will begin at 9:55 a.m. on Friday, May 16th.

Commencement Speaker

 

Rev. Dr. Justo L. González

Gonzalez“The seminary is absolutely delighted to have Rev. Dr. González as our commencement speaker this year,” said Dr. Lallene J. Rector, president of Garrett-Evangelical. “González has been an excellent scholar and theologian for The United Methodist Church and a pioneer for Latino/Latina theology within the UMC. His unwavering commitment to providing theological education is an inspiration to all of us here at Garrett-Evangelical.”

A native of Cuba, Dr. González is a retired professor of historical theology. For the last 30 years, González has focused on developing programs for Hispanic theological education, resulting in the founding of the Asociación par la Educación Teológica Hispana (AETH), the Hispanic Summer Program (HSP), and the Hispanic Theological Initiative (HTI). He also helped found the first academic journal related to Latino/a theology, Apuntes. Jointly, these efforts seek to strengthen Latino/Latina leadership in the church and the academy.

After completing his Ph.D. in historical theology at Yale University in 1961, Dr. González went to Puerto Rico, where he taught at the Evangelical Seminary of Puerto Rico for eight years. He then taught for another eight years at Candler School of Theology. An ordained United Methodist minister, González has published over a hundred books, mostly in the field of history, but also on various books of Scripture and on theology. His books have been translated into multiple languages. The best known include, The Story of Christianity (2 vols.) and A History of Christian Thought (3 vols.). In addition to his Ph.D., González has received five honorary doctorates.



Distinguished Alums

Each year, Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary chooses two alumni to be honored as Distinguished Alumni at our Commencement Ceremony. One alumnus is chosen from the most recent 25 years of graduates and one alumnus is chosen from all those alumni who graduated over 25 years ago. For our 157th Commencement, Garrett-Evangelical is pleased to honor Dr. Rita Lester and Dr. M. Franklin Dotts as our Distinguished Alumni.

Rita Lester Dist. AlumRita Lester

Rita Lester pursued the study of religion and religions as exemplary of the liberal arts, including methods and data from humanities and social sciences.  She holds two degrees from Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, a master of theological studies conferred in 1991 and a doctor of philosophy conferred (jointly with Northwestern University) in 1997. 

Lester has taught at Nebraska Wesleyan University (NWU) in Lincoln, Nebraska since 1998.  She currently serves as professor of religion and is also the faculty president, a member of the board of governors, and was chair of the philosophy and religion department (2006-2012). In addition to undergraduate courses, Lester has taught religious diversity in NWU’s master of arts in historical studies program.  Lester is a strong advocate for a comparative approach to religious study.  Lester teaches courses such as World Religions, Understanding Religion: Christians and Muslims, Women and Religion, and Contemporary Religious Studies.

Students and colleagues of Lester say she is known for her rigorous courses. In the same breath, they are quick to point out that her courses are so intriguing and engaging that students want to come back for more. “It is one thing to teach information, but it is really something else to inspire,” wrote one of Lester’s NWU students.  She is celebrated by her colleagues for her ability to stretch students’ minds, stay current on best teaching methods, her countless hours spent helping students with their prestigious scholarship applications, and work with students outside of the classroom.

It is because this continued dedication that Lester has earned recognition and unique career opportunities.  She spent 2007 on sabbatical in Toronto where she studied and conducted research at the Encounter World Religions Centre. She served as a Fulbright Program adviser during the 2009-2010 academic year and continues to contribute to prestigious scholarship programs such as Fulbright, Boren and Critical Languages.   In 2010, she was one of 12 professors in the nation selected to attend the “Teaching About Islam and Middle Eastern Culture” seminar in Jordan.  That same year she won NWU’s 2010-2011 Margaret J. Prouty Faculty Teaching Award.  In 2012, Lester was named the Nebraska Professor of the Year and was honored on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the Council for Advancement and Support of Education. She was selected from nearly 300 top professors in the country.

Lester was one of the 150 authors who contributed to the Encyclopedia of Women and Religion in North America (Indiana University Press, 2006), which was edited by Rosemary Skinner Keller and Rosemary Radford Reuther, both former faculty of Garrett-Evangelical. Lester's most recent publication is a chapter on tradition in Voices of Feminist Liberation (Equinox Press), which was published in the fall of 2012.

While her academic department is small, many agree that her reach is wide. “I went to school back when one could get a degree in religion, but really only study one religion, or even just a part of one religion,” said Lester. “The study of religion is more like the study of languages these days; people should know more than one. And knowing other ones may even help you to better know your own and yourself.”



M. Franklin DotsM. Franklin Dotts

After teaching high school English in Pittsburgh for six years, M. Franklin Dotts received a call from God to move from public education to Christian education. He pursued this call by attending Garrett Biblical Institute and received a master of divinity (M.Div.) degree with a specialty in Christian education in 1961. In this same year, he was certified in Christian education and ordained an elder in the Nebraska Annual Conference of The Methodist Church. In 1969, he received a doctor of education (Ed.D.) degree in religious education with a specialty in curriculum planning from Teachers College, Columbia University, through its joint program with Union Theological Seminary in New York City.

While pursuing his doctoral degree, Dotts began his long tenure at the United Methodist Publishing House (UMPH) and the General Board of Discipleship (GBOD) of The United Methodist Church.  He started there as an editor of church school curriculum resources for young children and early elementary children in the Department of Children’s Publications. After six years, he became the Director of Curriculum Planning, which meant working with the entire editorial staff in long-range planning of curriculum resources for all ages.  From 1986 until his retirement in 1990, Dotts served as Executive Editor of Children’s Publications, with responsibility for all church school resources for children from birth through Grade 6.  Throughout his time as editor on the national staff, Dotts was widely known for his encouragement and leadership. He served as a professional and personal mentor, setting an example for countless colleagues through whom his work continues today.

Dotts retired as an elder in the Nebraska Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church in 1991 but continued to share his editing gifts in free-lance work with both The United Methodist Church and the United Church of Christ. He also served the church through consulting and leadership training in local church, district, and annual conference Christian education.

For the past 28 years, Dotts has also served as a children’s consultant in the Committee on the Uniform Series of the National Council of Churches, which produces the International Lesson Series curriculum outlines for numerous denominations and publishers.  His work there exhibits Dott’s deep commitment to ecumenical Christianity as he has brought his wisdom and wealth of theological and biblical expertise to such a diverse ecumenical setting.

Dotts currently serves on the Board of Directors of Sacred Traditions and Rituals (STAR.), an inclusive worshipping community at Central United Methodist Church in Spartanburg, South Carolina. In recalling Dotts’ impact on STAR, The Rev. Susan E. Perrin writes, “In ordinary things done, one can experience extraordinariness. That is what Franklin has done, does, and will continue to offer his family, friends, community, church, STAR, and his alma mater… That is why the Rev. Dr. M. Franklin Dotts is worthy of this recognition from his beloved institution.”
           

Directions and Parking

Directions

For campus map and directions to Garrett-Evangelical click here.

For directions to First United Methodist Church click here.

Parking

Parking for Senior Chapel on Thursday, May 15, 7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.

  • We have arranged for a moratorium on parking tickets after 4:30 p.m., which means people will be able to use the NU lot to our south free of charge.

Parking for Commencement on Friday, May 16, 10:00 a.m.

  • Across the street from First Church Evanston is the Church St. Self Park, a multi-level garage at the intersection of Church St. and Chicago Ave. Parking is free for the first hour.  For a city map and pricing information for public garages, go to Lots & Garages on the City of Evanston's website.

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The United Methodist Church, welcomes
students from a wide range of faith traditions.