By Toya Richards Hill
Robinson’s graduation from Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary this past May, 2009, was the culmination of a ten-year journey of following God’s call to ministry. He began his process in 1999 when he first applied to several seminaries, including LPTS. However, he wasn’t sure he would be able to afford theological education at that time. For several years, Robinson worked in Dallas, Texas, getting involved in youth ministry at his church and participating in Presbytery ministries. In 2005, he reapplied to several seminaries and subsequently received a personal call from Louisville Seminary’s president, Dean K. Thompson, who inquired about Robinson’s ministry interests, which ultimately led to Robinson being offered the Norma Tate Rich Presidential Scholarship.
On Sunday, August 30, 2009, President Thompson will preach at the installation of Joshua Robinson as associate pastor at Raleigh Court Presbyterian Church in Roanoke, Va.
As a student at LPTS, Robinson served on the Seminary Council. He said among the many significant experiences he has had while at LPTS were the “first-rate” field education opportunities.
“I did not think I was going into parish ministry,” he added, noting that he was leaning toward chaplaincy. But during field practice it became clear “that God was calling me to (the) parish.”
Through his experiences at LPTS, Robinson said he has learned what gives him the most passion vocationally – worship. In his role as Chapel Coordinator Assistant, and working under the direction of the Rev. Dr. Claudio Carvalhaes, Assistant Professor of Worship and Preaching and the chapel coordinator, Robinson helped facilitate more than 70 unique and diverse worship services at the Frank H. and Fannie W. Caldwell Chapel on campus as part of a Worship Renewal Grant from the Calvin Institute of Christian Worship that was awarded to LPTS in 2008.
This past summer, Robinson also landed the job of liturgy writer for the 2009 summer worship series at Montreat Conference Center, a task that required him to write 11 liturgies. “I have grown so much academically in that experience of liturgy writing,” he said.
Now, as an associate pastor, Robinson’s duties will include providing pastoral care for youth and young adults, overseeing the church’s mission groups, pastoral administration and congregational communications, and preaching and teaching regularly.
“I love seeing others get excited,” he said, recalling the energy generated during weekly worship planning sessions of the chapel ministers’ team at LPTS. “The point is to help people get involved.”
“You do that by affirming the things people do well,” Robinson said. “I love to help people find what they do well, and then put it to use.”
“I feel ready!”