A Message from the President
Dear Phillips Community:
After I sent the messages a few weeks ago to the community regarding safe-enough space and addressing the event from last Fall that utilized several elements of Hawaiian culture, I received some feedback. The feedback was thoughtful and critical. The feedback was sent both to me and the members of the 2044 Council. The Council discussed the feedback at a recent meeting. In light of the feedback, the Council discussion, and my own wrestling with the best way to provide leadership and perspective on the matter of the seminary’s conversations and educational program related to diversity-inclusion-justice, I have a few additions to make to my previous messages.
First. Some persons in the Phillips community believe any use of elements from a colonized culture by persons not of that culture is wrong, on the face of the matter. Others believe that, if you ask permission from a member of that culture (which was done preceding the event last Fall), and the person gives permission, then an event such as the one last Fall could proceed.
Up until now, the seminary’s policies offered no explicit guidance in such a situation; there was no rule but there were conflicting moral assumptions. I’ve appreciated Robert Kegan and Lisa Lahey’s insight that, in organizations, conflicting moral assumptions can lead to creating rules in order to create clear violations rather than assumptions about violations (in their book, How the Way We Talk Can Change the Way We Work).
So, I am now going to add the following to the seminary’s policies:
Consistent with the priorities of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Phillips Theological Seminary seeks to be an anti-racist/pro-reconciliation organization, both in the seminary’s community life and its educational programs. One expression of that commitment is that the seminary, which is historically a predominantly white institution, shall avoid appropriating elements from non-white cultures. Seminary-sponsored events may use culturally-themed elements from cultures that have been colonized, oppressed, and/or commercially exploited only if the events include: 1) leadership by justice-conscious representatives from that culture; and 2) a substantive element of education about the culture.
Second. I am aware that both the Student Senate and the Faculty Senate have recently expressed the desire for a broader conversation, especially between students and faculty, regarding diversity-inclusion-justice at the seminary. Good.
You can expect to see two initiatives from my office that I trust will contribute to a broader and more open conversation at Phillips. One initiative begins this Spring and the other this Fall.
- The Fall initiative is that the seminary will begin using the Intercultural Development Inventory for all students and employees. I am eager to employ this instrument, which is used broadly in higher education and across a theological spectrum of seminaries.
- The Spring initiative is the preparation, distribution, and initial interpretation of a Campus Climate Survey. The elements of climate I want to know more about here include the perceptions of conversations, arguments, and practices concerning diversity-justice-inclusion. It will likely be after Easter when the survey is ready to distribute.
Third. There are statements regarding diversity and non-discrimination on the seminary’s website and in handbooks. There is not, however, more pointed language in policies that embody a commitment to be an anti-racist/pro-reconciliation institution. Such policies need to be developed and will be.
Gary Peluso-Verdend, President
You can find these and more important Seminary dates online on our Academic Calendar
|Mar 24 || ||Withdrawal Deadline |
|Mar 27 || ||Registration for Summer/Fall 2017 Opens |
|Apr 7 || ||Registration for Summer/Fall 2017 Closes |
|Apr 24|| ||New Student Registration Fall 2017 Opens |
Education Awareness Weekend
During this weekend and beyond, congregations and non-profits across Tulsa and the state will draw attention to the teacher pay crisis in Oklahoma and its impact on communities, schools, students, and educators.
The National Association of Social Workers OK will share facts and proposed solutions to this issue with its members across the state.
An Education Show and Tell following the service with speakers and small group discussion will be held this Sunday, March 26 at Fellowship Congregational UCC (2900 S. Harvard). All are welcome to attend the presentation, discussion, and lunch, all sponsored by ACTION Tulsa.
This event is free and open to the public, including families, and no reservations are needed.
For more information on other local events this weekend, visit ACTION Tulsa.
Miss Chapel? No problem!
Chapel podcasts are available from 2009 to present on the seminary's website. Listen here. These podcasts can assist all students stay connected to the heart of Phillips when not on campus or unable to attend services or activities.
Chapel Schedule for March/April/May
Holy Week Recess--No Chapel
To Be Determined
To Be Determined
Phillips Alum presents Spiritual Care at End of Life
Phillips alumna, the Rev. Sharyn Cosby, will give a free presentation on a myriad of elements to providing spiritual care that can be integrated into diverse settings, including hospice and long-term care. Rev. Cosby leads the RoseRock Healthcare chaplains and bereavement counselors to ensure exceptional pastoral care for patients and their families. Rev. Cosby is also the founder and pastor of In the Spirit Christian Church in Tulsa.
|When|| ||April 4 |
11:30 am 1:30 pm
| || Where ||Ti Amo Restaraunt |
6024 S. Sheridan Road
This is presented by RoseRock Healthcare, sponsored by Phillips Theological Seminary, The Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Oklahoma and the Oklahoma Family Empowerment Center. The lunch and presentation are free but you must register by March 29. Email your name, organization, and phone number to firstname.lastname@example.org
CEU's: Attendees will receive a certificate for attending 1 hour training plus .5 hour ethics.
The Rise of American Christendom
The seminary is hosting a two-part lecture series, which is FREE and open to the public:
March 30, 7-8:30 pm
Seminary President, the Rev. Dr. Gary Peluso-Verdend
, and Associate Dean and Professor of Theology, Dr. Joe Bessler
, will explore the historical roots and rise of the Christian Right. They have studied and written on the transformation of the Republican Party from a white collar, Northern, traditionalist Christian party to counting on a base of very conservative Southern and Western Christians.
April 6, 7-8:30 pm
Assistant Professor of Theology, Dr. Sarah Morice Brubaker
will show how reproductive issues became a rallying point for the Christian Right, while offering creative options to the usual rhetoric surrounding reproductive justice. She is a sought-after writer on reproductive health and Christianity and has been published in Religion Dispatches, The Christian Century, Geez Magazine, and Salon.
Read the full description here.
Please consider attending one or both of the lectures.
Join Dr. Sharon E. Watkins (alumna) and Rick Lowery(former Phillips professor) on a Lenten journey that will remind you of the role God calls us to play in the world. Remember the sacrifices Christ made and consider where your own sacrifices may lead you. Look at Lent, Holy Week, the Crucifixion, and the Resurrection through the lens of loving others and serving our God together.
-Excerpt from the publisher's description
There are copies of the new Lenten devotional placed around the seminary, including the library and Student Commons. May these devotionals be a companion on your Lenten journey.
Phillips Study Tips
Review your Degree Audit Form
All degree-seeking students have been sent a Degree Audit form last week by our Registrar. Be sure to review it when considering what courses to enroll in for the Summer/Fall 2017 semesters.
Anytime Phillips receives a job posting both in the Tulsa area and beyond, Student Services posts the opportunity on the bulletin board in the Student Commons. When you're on campus, please be sure to check the board. Jobs are posted for one month.
If you are a distance student and are interested in learning about current job postings, please contact Yadenee Hailu.
Scholarship Applications Due SoonBe sure to check your student email for information on how to apply for the Matthew Thompson Fellowship and Peak Scholarship. Applications are due April 16.
Social Justice Summer InternshipCheck out this awesome internship opportunity here in Tulsa with OK Poilicy Institute here. You can learn more about their non-partisan policy work here. Applications are due May 26.
Step on the Path to ReconciliationWalk from Reconciliation Park to the Greenwood Cultural Center with Phillips on Wednesday, May 31 at 5:30 pm. This event is part of the annual John Hope Franklin Symposium. More info coming soon.
Calling All Disciples Seminary Students!
Every other year, Disciples of Christ clergy and lay leaders gather for a General Assembly. This year, the Assembly will be held in Indianapolis July 8-12.
To learn more about General Assembly, please visit the Disciples of Christ website
or watch this short video.
If you are planning to attend and would like more details about the event or information about how to serve as an usher and earn extra money, please contact MaryAnn Morris
News from the Library
Welcome to the NINTH week of classes!
Find our contact information and hours of operation on the Phillips website:
About the Library
Call anytime: 918.270.6437
The Second Library Badge has Launched!Test your information literacy skills by attempting to earn the badges in the Resources for Success course in Moodle. The library lessons are self-paced and allow for multiple attempts (low pressure!). In the second lesson you will learn how to evaluate sources and select authoritative information.
Buttercup's Bookcover Feature
Confronting a Controlling God
This little book, coming with high praise from Brian McLaren and Denny Weaver, asserts the Christian humanist tradition as an approach to facing and challenging controlling elements in politics, society, and theology. This understanding of God-talk as being symbolic is presented in a cut-to-the-chase, easily understood language. The author makes clear that the Christian humanist tradition’s understanding is both biblical and conservative; it should not be confused with such arguments in opposition to fundamentalism that would conceive of God as a failed causal impulse. Find this and more in Catherine Wallace’s series: Confronting Fundamentalism in the Library Catalog.
Library SurveyHere is a link to our survey about your vision how you view (or don't!) library materials!
Library Journal News
Journal for Preachers is the featured publication this week. It is published quarterly, and issues are thematically structured and timed for release in advance of Lent, Easter, Pentecost, and Advent. PTS library has bound holdings of the journal beginning in 1983. Current and past issues back to 1977 are indexed and available in full text in the ATLA Religion Database.
The current issue on the shelf is devoted to Lent. “Lenten Preaching among Distressed Lives: Five Assists for Lenten Preachers from Intersections between Martin Luther’s Homiletical Theology and a Political Theologian’s Vigil through a Tumultuous US Socio-Political Season,” by Jan Schnell Rippentrop, offers some sermon suggestions for Lenten preaching.
Also in this issue, “Crafting a Sermon Series: Contemporary Approaches to Structuring Preaching Over Time,” by Scott Black Johnson, offers practical suggestions for organizing sermons over the long haul of a clerical career.
Drop by the library and take a look!
Reserves and Serials Librarian
Weekly Library eBook Feature from Amanda
Sex Difference in Christian Theology: Male, Female, and Intersex in the Image of God
By Megan K. DeFranza
‘How different are men and women? When does it matter to us -- or to God? Are male and female the only two options? In Sex Difference in Christian Theology Megan DeFranza explores such questions in light of the Bible, theology, and science. Many Christians, entrenched in culture wars over sexual ethics, are either ignorant of the existence of intersex persons or avoid the inherent challenge they bring to the assumption that everybody is born after the pattern of either Adam or Eve. DeFranza argues, from a conservative theological standpoint, that all people are made in the image of God -- male, female, and intersex -- and that we must listen to and learn from the voices of the intersexed among us.’
Synopsis the publisher
Find this and all our electronic books through the Library Catalog.
Richard D. Greene Memorial Lecture
University Congregational Church and College Hill United Methodist Church, both in Wichita, Kansas are delighted to announce they are hosting Rachel Held Evans, a New York Times best-selling author and popular blogger who writes about faith, doubt and life in the Bible Belt.
Her books include Faith Unraveled (2010), A Year of Biblical Womanhood (2012), and Searching for Sunday (2015). Tickets are $20 each or $50 for all three, purchase them online here.