Meet Diamond Pate
Degree program: Master of Divinity
Hometown: Las Vegas, Nevada
I majored in religion at Pfeiffer University in Misenheimer, North Carolina. After college, I served as a US-2 missionary through the General Board of Global Ministries of The United Methodist Church. As a missionary, I spent a couple of months in New Jersey recruiting volunteers for Superstorm Sandy Recovery work. I spent the rest of my two years as a missionary working at Hinton Rural Life Center in Hayesville, North Carolina. At Hinton, I worked with volunteer teams to participate in-home repairs for low-income families in the Appalachian Mountains. I fell in love with the mountains and the wonderful people. Even though I am a west coast girl, I love southern culture, especially the food! I also love to cook and paint. I just got a sewing machine, so I am excited to start working on some sewing projects.
Why did you choose Garrett-Evangelical:
I chose Garrett-Evangelical because of its emphasis on pastoral care and counseling. I think it is vital for church leaders to learn skills in pastoral care and counseling because being a pastor is much more than just preaching. Garrett-Evangelical is also an environment that is actively pursuing new ways of connecting what we are learning to public theology and justice concerns around the world. I didn’t want an education that revolved around just reading books and writing papers; I wanted an education that pushed me outside the classroom and into practical learning and social engagement.
How has your faith been strengthened since attending Garrett-Evangelical:
Being in the community has really strengthened my faith. I am on this journey with some wonderful classmates who provide tremendous support to each other. After class, we continue to wrestle with what we have been learning, and we push each other to apply the lessons we have learned. I enjoy having this space to have open dialogue about difficult issues and to know that whenever I am in need, one of my classmates will be there for me. We share our joys and our struggles; we really are like a family.
Why would you recommend Garrett-Evangelical:
Garrett-Evangelical has a strong commitment to engaging students spiritually and intellectually. My theological education has helped me take what I am learning in the classroom and use it in the world to increase God’s beloved community.
I am working toward ordination in The United Methodist Church as an elder. I plan on going back to my home conference (Desert Southwest) and taking the valuable lessons I have learned here to nurture congregations toward intentional outreach ministry.