Special Event


Ash Wednesday Retreat with Bishop Linda Lee

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Lent flyer

Garrett-Evangelical Black Alumni Reception

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February 25, 2015 | Loder Lounge | 7:00 p.m.

To learn more about this event and all events during Black History month, click here.

Deacon Dialogue 2015

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Deacon Dialogue WPB 2.0 copy

Deacon Register Now
Wednesday, April 15 | 7-9 p.m.
Thursday, April 16 | 9-11:30 a.m.

A deacon candidacy formation workshop, for people who are in candidacy on the deacon track, will precede the Deacon Dialogue.

For more information about this workshop, click here

April 16-18, 2015

Welcome to the 2015 Deacon Dialogue!
Our churches and communities are being enlivened everyday by deacons inspired to new forms of ministry, yet many challenges remain. This year's conference will focus on ministries of Compassion and Justice and will feature three remarkable keynote speakers. Additional information and registration can be found in the tabs below. Don't miss this unique continuing education opportunity and the chance for renewal and networking with fellow deacons!

Featured speakers include:

Romal    Louise Williams   Darryl Stephens
 Rev. Romal Tune    Deaconess E. Louise Williams    Rev. Dr. Darryl Stephens

Welcome to Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary!
Since the creation of the order of deacon in 1996, Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary has been at the forefront in deacon studies offering programs at the masters and certificate levels. Founded in 1853, Garrett-Evangelical is a graduate school of theology related to The United Methodist Church. Located on the campus of Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois, the seminary serves more than 500 students from various denominations and cultural backgrounds, fostering an atmosphere of ecumenical interaction. Its 4,500 living alumni serve church and society around the world.


Registration Information

Individual or Group Online Registration (Credit card)
The registration fee is $150 per person and includes dinner on Thursday, lunch and dinner on Friday, and all snacks. To register now, click the "Register (Individual)" or "Register (Group)" button below.

Student Online Registration (Credit Card)
If you are a student you will need a coupon code to receive the 50% discount ($75). Please contact Dr. Virginia Lee at virginia.lee@garrett.edu and a coupon code will be emailed to you within 1 - 2 business days.

Registration by Check
To register by check please print and mail the Registration Form along with your check, payable to Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, to:

Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary
ATTN: Virginia Lee
2121 Sheridan Road
Evanston, IL 60201

Registration is limited to 125 people. If you have special needs or dietary restrictions while on campus please contact Dr. Virginia Lee, Deacon Studies Coordinator, by April 1st so we can plan accordingly. If you have additional questions or needs you may also contact Dr. Lee at 847.866.4549 or virginia.lee@garrett.edu.

***Garrett-Evangelical is pleased to offer 0.5 CEU Credit for any person who attends all sessions of the conference. For more information, please contact the Office of External Programs at 847.866.4547 or External.Programs@garrett.edu.

Speaker Biographies

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Rev. Dr. Darryl W. Stephens is an ordained deacon of the Texas Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church (UMC) and holds a PhD in Christian Ethics from Emory University. Currently, he serves as Director of United Methodist Studies at Lancaster Theological Seminary and teaches as an adjunct professor at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary. He is former Assistant General Secretary for Advocacy and Sexual Ethics at the General Commission on the Status and Role of Women in the UMC, co-editor of Professional Sexual Ethics: A Holistic Ministry Approach (Fortress Press, 2013), and author of a number of articles on ethics and ministry, for church and academic audiences. He is in the final stages of a book manuscript on the United Methodist Social Principles and is currently researching practices of healing for congregations affected by clergy sexual misconduct.

Romal 300

Romal Tune is the embodiment of living beyond the label. After overcoming the setbacks of his upbringing and the destructive choices of his youth, he is now a sought out communicator, community strategist, and education consultant. His platform, one of the most potent and rich stories of hope you’ll ever hear, is REDEMPTION. If it is true that a story must be lived before it is told, Romal’s story of redemption is as genuine as it is moving. With every opportunity he has to impact decision makers or crowds of people around the world, Romal is a cultivator of hope and dignity, moving individuals from setbacks to success, something he knows full well.

Since growing up in the trauma of poverty, violence, and the inner-city landscapes void of opportunity, he has triumphed to the heights of a Magna Cum Laude graduate of Howard University and Duke University School of Divinity, an ordained minister, and the author of an Award-Winning Book entitled, “God’s Graffiti: Inspiring Stories for Teens”. What is different about Romal Tune is that when he takes the stage or sits down at the conference table, its as if he’s speaking only to YOU. With his own unique style that has won over international audiences, Romal leaves an impression on rooms full of people that are moved to action, compassion, and systemic change. By sharing his own powerful story and teaching strategies to move past pain and regret, Romal delivers a message of redemption with every opportunity to share.

Romal not only asks the question of WHY for many of the broken systems and structures in our world- education, poverty, community engagement, and more-- he is also answering the HOW question, empowering others to create solutions and responses, currently in four continents around the world. Whether it is speaking with officials at an embassy, preaching from a pulpit amidst thousands, or motivating a convention room full of inner-city high school teachers, Romal will show you and tell you, your tomorrow doesn’t have to look like your today.

Romal, the tangible evidence of his message, will proclaim that redemption is still possible, even for the least of these around the world, or those right on your city block.

Bishops installation

Deaconess E. Louise Williams, is Executive Director Emeritus of the Lutheran Deaconess Association and is an adjunct part-time assistant professor in theology at Valparaiso University.  She served as Executive Director of the Lutheran Deaconess Association in Valparaiso, IN, for 33 years and is a past president of Diakonia, World Federation. Williams is a member of Spiritual Directors International and has written topic studies on women in the church and prayer/spirituality. She holds a BA with honors in Theology from Valparasio University and an MA in Religious Studies from Mundelein College.




Thursday, April 16, 2015

1:00 p.m. Opening Worship (Word and Table) Bishop Sally Dyck

2:30 p.m. Break

3:00 p.m.  Welcome Rev. Dr. Virginia A. Lee and Rev. Victoria Rebeck

3:15 p.m. Plenary Diakonia: Five Images with Deaconess E. Louise Williams 

5:15 p.m. Break

6:00 p.m. Dinner Conversation groups to continue the discussion about images of Diakonia

8:00 p.m. Evening prayer

8:30 p.m. Networking groups

Friday, April 17, 2015

9:00 a.m. Morning prayer

9:15 a.m. Plenary   Healing Congregations: Where Compassion Meets Justice with Rev. Dr. Darryl Stephens
Clergy sexual misconduct is a debilitating factor for vitality in many congregations. Absent an intentional process of healing, a prior incident of ministerial sexual abuse can create system-wide dysfunctions hampering the ministry of a church for decades. Together, we will explore how the Deacon is often in a crucial position to identify, name, and address the symptomatic evidence of this problem, creating opportunities for healing within the congregation.

10:15 a.m. Break

10:45 a.m. Workshop 1

12:00 p.m. Break

12:15 Lunch

1:30 p.m. Gathering

1:45 p.m. Plenary with Rev. Romal Tune

3:15 p.m.Break

3:45 p.m. Workshop 2

5:00 p.m. Break

6:00 p.m. Dinner

7:30 p.m. Rev. Romal Tune (public invited)

Saturday, April 18, 2015

9:00 a.m. Morning prayers

9:15 a.m. Workshop 3

10:30 a.m. Break

11:00 a.m. Closing Worship



Discounted accommodations are available at the Hilton Garden Inn of Evanston (Evanston.HGI.com). Please reserve using the words "Garrett-Deacon Dialogue" or referencing reservation number 678735.  Please make your reservations on or before March 16, 2015.



The links below will help you make your way to Garrett-Evangelical and help you find your way around once you arrive.



Admissions Open House

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Welcome to the next step in your journey to fulfill your calling . . .

Attending an Open House is a good way to get a lot of information in a short period of time. So we designed the following Open House schedule with your needs in mind.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

The day will begin at 9 a.m. and end by 3 p.m.
Free parking is available for the day.

To let us know that you're coming, register now!

Conversations with the President

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4:00 p.m. | Room 205

UMC Logo Garrett-Evangelical, a seminary related to
The United Methodist Church, welcomes
students from a wide range of faith traditions.