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Highlights from Fall 2017 Convocation

by Chris Wooton | Sep 12, 2017

On September 7, 2017, Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary kicked off its 164th academic year with its fall Convocation service. More than 120 people attended the event, which included the formal installation of Dr. Ashley Hicks White as assistant professor of marriage and family therapy.


Asjley Hicks WhiteHicks White's Convocation address, Toward a Relational Approach to Social Justice, drew on Mark 12:28-34 and centered on the ways in which the call to love one another can be carried out to affect change in our individual and collective lives. Hicks White contends that issues of injustice might be better addressed using an optional conceptualization that places the highest value on interpersonal relationships.


Hicks White is a specialist in couples/family therapy, a licensed marriage and family therapist, and an AAMFT Approved Supervisor Candidate. She joined Louisville Seminary’s faculty in 2016 and is a founding member of Louisville Seminary’s Upsilon Chapter of the Delta Kappa International Marriage and Family Therapy Honor Society.

During the fall Convocation service, four Louisville Seminary students were honored for their academic achievements.

Fall 2017 Convocation Awards

MDiv student Christiaan Faul received the E.L. Bell Memorial Prize for excellence in biblical studies.

MDiv student Jamil Grimes received the Burton Z Cooper Prize in Theology for demonstrating promise in constructive, philosophical, systematic or contemporary theology.

MDiv student Teresa Poole received the Dean K. Thompson Prize in Practical Theology for excellence in the study of practical theology and in their congregational field education placement

MAMFT student Shelby Oda received the James A. Hyde Marriage and Family and Pastoral Counseling Theory & Practice Award for demonstration of excellence in her first year in the MAMFT clinical and academic program.

Jonathan SoyarsThe Louisville Seminary community also welcomed Jonathan Soyars, a Louisville Institute postdoctoral fellow and visiting assistant professor of New Testament. His professorship comes as part of the Louisville Institute's Postdoctoral Fellowship program, which places top recent Ph.D. graduates in theological schools for two years, where they teach and also are mentored by a senior professor and a local pastor.

In light of the recent violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, and the upcoming anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Louisville Seminary President Michael Jinkins gave the Louisville Seminary community some "homework" for the fall semester. He asked that all take some time to read Martin Luther King Jr.'s Letter from Birmingham City Jail.

"Most people of my generation were taught by Dr. King that love without justice is merely sentimentalism, but justice without love is only vengeance," said Jinkins. "If we wish to see justice roll down like waters, and righteousness like a mighty stream, then our means must fit our ends, wrote Dr. King. Surely we must find the right levers of power if we are to bring meaningful and lasting change, but if love is not our means, we will find no love in our ends."


Prayers and well wishes to our Louisville Seminary community this academic year.
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