News

Beargrass Christian Church Honored as Congregational Partner

Lexington, Ky., June 16, 2014 – Lexington Theological Seminary’s 2014 Congregational Partner Award recipient is Beargrass Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Louisville, Ky.

Since 1966, Beargrass Christian Church has funded a generous scholarship to assist ministerial students. Since that time, over 70 students have received the award including Jan Ehrmantraut, former Regional Minister of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Kentucky; LTS Lilly Grant Director and local church pastor Kris Bentley; Christian Church in Kentucky Associate Regional Minister Linda Jones; former Week of Compassion Executive Director Johnny Wray, and Clark Gilpin, former dean of the Disciples Divinity House at the University of Chicago.

Current scholars include Anna Hope Curwood, Joseph Pusateri, Steven Straub, Vernon Bolden and Julia Cory.

Dr. Leigh Bond, Beargrass Christian Church Senior Minister, and Leslie Geoghegan, LTS Trustee and advancement committee chair, will receive the award at the 148th commencement ceremony June 20 at Crestwood Christian Church in Lexington.

“Beargrass Christian Church has been a faithful partner in ministry with Lexington Theological Seminary through congregational care of our students in their ministries,” Dr. Gillett said. “We are thankful for their generous gifts of finances, time, resources, teaching and partnership in the process of equipping students for ministry.”

Past recipients are Crestwood Christian Church (2012) and First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Frankfort (2013).

For more information about Beargrass Christian Church, visit http://beargrass.org/

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Lexington Theological Seminary is an accredited graduate theological institution of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ).  Consistent with the Disciples’ historic commitment to Christian unity, the Seminary is intentionally ecumenical with students, faculty, staff and trustees of various denominations. The Seminary has been preparing leaders for the church since 1865. For more information, visit www.lextheo.edu.

Edwards Featured Speaker at 148th Commencement

Lexington, Ky., June 12, 2014 – The Rev. Dr. William Edwards, Regional Pastor and President of the Christian Church in Ohio (Disciples of Christ), will deliver the keynote address at Lexington Theological Seminary’s 148th graduation service on Friday, June 20, at Crestwood Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Lexington.

Dr. Edwards offers an energetic and unique perspective of transformational ministry from both the broader Church as well as the congregational level.

“His experiences will no doubt serve to inspire meaningful words of encouragement to our graduates as they prepare for ministry as freshly-equipped leaders in the church,” said Dr. Charisse L. Gillett, LTS President. ”We are pleased Dr. Edwards will be able to join us as the 2014 Commencement speaker.”

Prior to the past 10 years as Regional Pastor and President, Dr. Edwards served as Associate General Minister and Vice President in the Office of General Minister and President. He served as pastor of the Disciples Center in Cincinnati, Ohio. The Disciples Center was a unique joint ministry of two congregations.

Dr. Edwards served as Executive Pastor of Mississippi Boulevard Christian Church of Memphis, Tenn., the largest congregation in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) with a membership of 8,000 members. He was also Senior Associate in the Center for Congregational Growth and Vitality, a division of Homeland Ministries.

Dr. Edwards has served as Interim Pastor of First United Christian Church in Xenia, Ohio, and East Second St. Christian Church in Lexington, Ky. He was associate minister of University Park Christian Church in Indianapolis, Ind.

An Ohio native, Dr Edwards is a graduate of Hiram College, Christian Theological Seminary (M.Div.) and McCormick Theological Seminary (D.Min.) and holds an Executive Masters of Business Administration from the University of Memphis.

The Seminary’s graduation service will take place at 10 a.m. as 12 students will be conferred graduate and terminal degrees including Doctor of Ministry and Master of Divinity, with some students receiving certificates in ministry.

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Lexington Theological Seminary is an accredited graduate theological institution of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ).  Consistent with the Disciples’ historic commitment to Christian unity, the Seminary is intentionally ecumenical with students, faculty, staff and trustees of various denominations. The Seminary has been preparing leaders for the church since 1865. For more information, visit www.lextheo.edu.

Upcoming Events at LTS

For more details or to register for an event, please check for the event registration on the events page.

LTS Golf Scramble
June 6

Webinar
June 7 | 1:30 – 3:30 p.m. Lifting Your Congregation from “Good to Great” – Re-Framing Church
Growth in the Missional Era with Rev. Matt Rosine

LTS Homecoming
June 19

Commencement
June 20
Crestwood Christian Church, with the Rev. Dr. William Edwards, Regional Minister of The Christian Church in Ohio, delivering the commencement address.

On-Campus Intensives (for students)
June 20-29

Webinar
October 11 | 1:30 – 3:30 p.m.
Help! I’m a Sunday School Teacher? with Dr. Claire Bischoff

Board Welcomes Kirkland and McManis as New Trustees

Lexington, Ky., March 28, 2014 – The Lexington Theological Seminary Board of Trustees welcomes William Kirkland and the Rev. Elizabeth McManis, both of Frankfort, Ky.

Elizabeth Gilbert McManis is a lifelong Disciple of Christ. She holds a B.A. in Sociology from Western Kentucky University, a Master’s of Public Affairs from Kentucky State University, completed all but her dissertation for a Ph.D. in Sociology at the University of Kentucky, and earned an M.Div. from Lexington Theological Seminary. As a lay person, she co-created and implemented Elders’ retreats at National City Christian Church, Baltimore region; Kingsway Christian Church, Memphis, Tenn.; and Mt. Sterling Christian Church. At First Christian Church in Frankfort, she has served as a deacon, an elder, and chair of the board, as well as chair of numerous committees, co-creator of Small Group Ministries, and director of Lay Ministry.

She served Kentucky state government as: Executive Director of the Office of Public Employee Health Insurance, Deputy Commissioner in the Personnel Cabinet, Director of Administration and Financial Management for Dept. for Mental Health Mental Retardation, Director of Finance for the Dept. of Fish and Wildlife, and Director of the Community Development Block Grant Program in the Department of Local Government.

Following her retirement from State Government, McManis answered her call to ministry and was ordained upon completion of her M.Div. She served the Pleasureville Christian Church as Minister, First Christian Church in Frankfort as Associate Minister, and Arlington Christian Church as Interim Minister.

William D. Kirkland is an attorney and partner in the firm McBrayer, McGinnis, Leslie & Kirkland. He is a Centre College graduate with a B.A. in Economics and holds a J.D. from Vanderbilt University. Kirkland attended Lexington Theological Seminary for professional study from 1977 to 1979.

Kirkland practices general litigation in the areas of insurance defense, administrative law, contract law and commercial law. He also frequently handles wills, trusts and estates along with related issues of guardianship and conservatorship. He also works with contractors and vendors in the areas of state and local procurement law and construction disputes. He frequently handles administrative litigation involving state and federal agencies.

He is a former Assistant U.S. Attorney and state government attorney and has devoted much of his time to pro bono activities, including several years as a former chair of the Frankfort Housing Authority and the Paul Sawyer Public Library, Vice Chair of the Frankfort Arts Foundation, and as a member of the boards of many organizations, including the Frankfort

YMCA, Governor’s Task Force on Education, Kentucky State Board of Elections, Kentucky State Historical Society, and South Frankfort Presbyterian Church, where he currently attends and has served as an elder, deacon and Sunday School teacher, among other roles.

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Lexington Theological Seminary is an accredited graduate theological institution of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). Consistent with the Disciples’ historic commitment to Christian unity, the Seminary is intentionally ecumenical with students, faculty, staff and trustees of various denominations. The Seminary has been preparing leaders for the church since 1865. For more information, visit www.lextheo.edu.

Webinar series

Here’s a great opportunity for church leaders, church groups, Sunday School classes, and more! A webinar series you can attend online or on site in Lexington. Register online and get full details here:  http://www.lextheo.edu/webinars-workshops-for-church-leaders/

Financial Impact on Ministry Team Grows

AinsleLexington, Ky., Jan. 24, 2014 – Lexington Theological Seminary’s work to improve the economic well being of future pastors will include team member Deena Ainslie.

Ainslie, who previously worked as an assistant to President Charisse L. Gillett, will serve as project assistant, beginning in February. The program is funded by a $250,000 grant as part of Indianapolis-based Lilly Endowment Inc.’s Theological School Initiative to Address Economic Issues Facing Future Ministers.

Ainslie is a Murray State University alumnus with a Bachelor of Arts degree in education. Additionally, she is experienced in the fields of business and finance. Prior to her recent relocation to Lexington, she worked with Union County Public Schools in Morganfield, Kentucky.

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Lexington Theological Seminary is an accredited graduate theological institution of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). Consistent with the Disciples’ historic commitment to Christian unity, the Seminary is intentionally ecumenical with students, faculty, staff and trustees of various denominations. The Seminary has been preparing leaders for the church since 1865. For more information, visit www.lextheo.edu.

LTS Tour of Turkey and Greece: Ephesus

House Room Fresco 2Our group is well into their tour of “Churches of the Revelation and the Footsteps of Paul” in Turkey and Greece. The latest post describes their journey to Ephesus.

Read more at:

http://lextheo.blogspot.com/

LTS Alumnus joins Seminary’s Lilly-Funded Financial Impact Project

Bentley Lexington, Ky., Jan. 22, 2014 – The Rev. Kris Bentley joins Lexington Theological Seminary this week as project director for LTS’ part in the Lilly Endowment Inc.’s Theological School Initiative to Address Economic Issues Facing Future Ministers.

The Lilly Endowment awarded LTS $250,000 as part of an initiative to encourage theological schools to examine and strengthen their financial and educational practices to improve the economic well-being of future pastors. Personal financial pressures are severely limiting the ability of seminary graduates to accept calls to Christian ministry and undermining the effectiveness of too many pastoral leaders.

Bentley has an undergraduate degree from UK with a major in English (1979),  Master of Science Degree in Education from IU-Bloomington (1981) and a Master of Divinity from LTS (1996).  She has held administrative positions in higher education at Midway College and the University of Kentucky and currently also serves as the pastor of Newtown Christian Church, near Georgetown, Kentucky.

“LTS is fortunate to have the Rev. Bentley leading this project.  Her wisdom and the insights gained from her work in higher education and the local church make her the ideal person to give leadership to this important work,” said LTS President Charisse L. Gillett.

LTS will use its funding to address financial literacy of ministry students, improve institutional practices, and to fuel research on bi-vocational ministers.

For the purposes of this grant, LTS will partner with the Council of the Colleges and Universities of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Phillips Theological Seminary and The Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Kentucky.

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Lexington Theological Seminary is an accredited graduate theological institution of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ).  Consistent with the Disciples’ historic commitment to Christian unity, the Seminary is intentionally ecumenical with students, faculty, staff and trustees of various denominations. The Seminary has been preparing leaders for the church since 1865. For more information, visit www.lextheo.edu.

Seminary launches blog series on clergy health and well-being

Lexington, Ky., Jan. 21, 2014 – Clergy health and well-being are the focus of a new blog series launching this week via Lexington Theological Seminary’s Ministry Life Choices Initiative (MLCI).

LTS Advancement Associate Julie Richardson Brown is editing the series, with contributions from pastors and church leaders from a variety of denominations and seminaries.

Each segment of the series will focus on a particular area of concern for clergy, including physical, emotional, spiritual and financial well-being.

The MLCI will assist those in the first five years of ministry to develop habits and practices for sustainable ministry. The relationship will span the first few years of theological education and the introductory years as a congregational minister. The MLCI is a ministry of the Pension Fund of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in partnership with Lexington Theological Seminary.

To follow the blog series, go to http://www.lextheo.edu/category/mlci_blog/. To learn more about MLCI, visit http://www.lextheo.edu/ministry-life-choices-initiative-2/.

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Lexington Theological Seminary is an accredited graduate theological institution of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). Consistent with the Disciples’ historic commitment to Christian unity, the Seminary is intentionally ecumenical with students, faculty, staff and trustees of various denominations. The Seminary has been preparing leaders for the church since 1865. For more information, visit www.lextheo.edu

Lexington Theological Seminary receives Lilly Grant

Lexington, Ky., Dec. 9, 2013 – LTS has received a $250,000 grant as part of Indianapolis-based Lilly Endowment Inc.’s Theological School Initiative to Address Economic Issues Facing Future Ministers. It is one of 67 theological schools across the country to receive this funding.

Personal financial pressures are severely limiting the ability of seminary graduates to accept calls to Christian ministry and undermining the effectiveness of too many pastoral leaders. To help address this issue, Lilly Endowment created the initiative to encourage theological schools to examine and strengthen their financial and educational practices to improve the economic well-being of future pastors.

All theological schools fully accredited by the Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada were invited to submit grant proposals. LTS will use its funding to address financial literacy of ministry students, improve institutional practices, and to fuel research on bi-vocational ministers.

For the purposes of this grant, LTS will partner with the Council of the Colleges and Universities of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Phillips Theological Seminary and The Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Kentucky.

“The Seminary and these institutions have a mutual and targeted interest in exploring issues that permit the successful implementation of this project,” said the Rev. Gary Kidwell, LTS Board of Trustees chairman.

LTS President Charisse L. Gillett said that the Seminary is working to address the impact of financial challenges on ministry.

Prior to applying for this grant, the Seminary was already at work to understand and address these challenges by, among other things, requiring students to take a financial literacy course, enhancing mandatory counseling for all borrowers, targeted scholarship and tuition policies to those engaged in preparation for congregational ministry, and nurtured partnerships with the Pension Fund and The Center for Faith and Giving of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ).

“In light of these conversations and the Seminary’s efforts related to institutional and financial sustainability, we believe this grant is well-timed and ideal,“ Gillett said.

“Pastors are indispensable spiritual leaders and guides, and the quality of pastoral leadership is critical to the health and vitality of congregations,” said Christopher L. Coble, vice president for religion at the Endowment.

“Theological schools play a critical role in preparing pastors and are uniquely positioned to address some of the economic challenges they face,” Coble said. “The Endowment hopes that these grants will support broad efforts to improve the financial circumstances facing pastoral leaders so that pastors can serve their congregations more joyfully and effectively.”

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Lexington Theological Seminary is an accredited graduate theological institution of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ).  Consistent with the Disciples’ historic commitment to Christian unity, the Seminary is intentionally ecumenical with students, faculty, staff and trustees of various denominations. The Seminary has been preparing leaders for the church since 1865. For more information, visit www.lextheo.edu.