AUSTIN, Texas — Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary has added two new trustees to its governing board: James B. Crawley of Norman, OK, and the Hon. Lyndon L. Olson Jr. of Waco, Texas. Each board member is invited to serve a term of three years, and eligible to serve two additional consecutive terms.

Crawley, an elder at First Presbyterian Church of Norman, is the founder and chairman of Crawley Petroleum Corporation, Crawley Ventures, LLC and the Crawley Family Foundation. Reared in the east Texas oilfields, Crawley obtained his degree in mechanical engineering at Texas A&M University before going on to get his MBA from Harvard Business School.

Olson, an elder at Waco’s Central Presbyterian Church, is an active member of the Council of Foreign Relations and the Council of American Ambassadors. He served as U.S. Ambassador to Sweden from 1998-2001 and before that as the president and CEO of Travelers Insurance Holdings. A graduate of Baylor University and Baylor Law School, he is a former member of the Texas State House of Representatives serving from 1973-1978.

DECATUR, Ga. — Columbia Theological Seminary’s Center for Lifelong Learning has released the electronic version of its JOURNEYING TOGETHER newsletter. 

Beginning with the fall 2009 issue, the newsletter will be published several times a year and content updated between issues. This electronic version completely replaces the paper version.   

“We are excited about the new format, which allows us to update content between issues, and gives us a ‘green’ way to share information,” said Sarah Erickson, director of lifelong learning.  Featured in the first issue is seminary president Steve Hayner’s reflection, “The Call to Discipleship is Big, Broad, and Deep.”

The newsletter is available online. To receive the publication, by email, click the "join" button on the top right corner of the front page of JOURNEYING TOGETHER, or email.

RICHMOND, Va. — A group of faculty, students and friends from Union Theological Seminary and Presbyterian School of Christian Education will travel to the Middle East May 7-27, 2010. It is open to all Union-PSCE alumni/ae and friends. 

The group will go to Syria, Jordan, Lebanon, Israel, and Egypt and will include visits to the Great Pyramids, Damascus, the Old City of Jerusalem, and many more historic sites.  

The group will be led by Samuel Balentine, professor of Old Testament; Andreas Schuele, professor of Biblical theology; and Samuel Adams, assistant professor of Old Testament. For more information, contact Andreas Schuele by email.

Union-PSCE sponsors annual travel seminars to foster international exchanges in four regions: the Middle East, Ghana, Korea and China, and Latin America.

PRINCETON, N.J. — Princeton Theological Seminary will present three musical services of carols from around the world for the seminary and Princeton communities on Dec. 9 in Miller Chapel on the Seminary’s campus.

This annual Christmas tradition has continued for more than 12 years and offers a counterpoint to the more traditional Service of Lessons and Carols. The service includes readings, choral anthems, and congregational carols led by the Princeton Seminary Choir, and international students and staff of the Seminary. After each identical service, everyone is invited to carol by candlelight outside of the chapel on the seminary quadrangle.

The wide array of carols and anthems from different nations and cultures reflects the diverse representation of students at the Seminary. Of the 615 students enrolled for the 2009–2010 academic year, 27 are international students who come from 17 countries, including Singapore, Japan, Denmark, Germany, Ghana, Mexico, Scotland, Brazil, Nepal, and Malaysia. As part of the service students, faculty, and staff will read Advent and Christmas Scriptures in their native languages, including Spanish, Russian, French, Taiwanese, Chinese, and Dutch.

The event is free and open to the public.

CHICAGO — On Nov. 2, McCormick Theological Seminary welcomed a new cohort of 11 Doctor of Ministry students, who joined 63 others currently pursuing a D.Min. degree through the seminary.

These new students represent six denominations including the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), Presbyterian Church of Korea, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, Mennonite, Baptist, and non-denominational traditions.

Two students are denominational staffers, one is a hospital chaplain and eight are currently serving congregations; five are women and six are men and their ages range from 29 to 56. Two are African-American and one is South Korean serving a church in the U.S. Members of the cohort hold Master of Divinity degrees from nine seminaries.  Two are McCormick alumni. 

The D.Min. Program’s profile of diversity and ecumenism as well as its collaborative, group-oriented learning model convinced Kimberly Lymore (Class of 2009) of the Faith Community of Saint Sabina in Chicago to seek her advanced training at McCormick.

Designed to offer pastors the opportunity to refresh, retool and revitalize their ministries, the D.Min. Program has itself been refreshed, retooled and revitalized during the last 18 months through curriculum changes designed to better meet the needs of today’s pastors and the implementation of a proactive recruiting strategy.

While the cohort model continues as one of the strengths of the program, it has been modified to move students through the five courses of the core curriculum as a cohort composed of persons interested in any of the three concentrations: Building Beloved Community, Parish Revitalization, and Pastoral and Spiritual Care.

New students begin study in either June or November and all start with the core course, “Where Three or More are Gathered: Leadership and Groups.” Core Courses also include “The Church in the World Today,” a Bible course focusing on new methods of biblical interpretation and an in-depth student of a particular portion of Scripture, “Culturally Attentive Pastoral Leadership,” and “Research Methods.” Core courses are offered in October and January/February. The two-week thesis residency continues in January. Electives specific to each concentration are offered in May or June of each year.

SAN ANSELMO, Calif. — San Francisco Theological Seminary has announced the appointment of the Rev. David Dolan as associate vice-president for development and director of major and capital gifts.

Dolan, who received his M.Div. from SFTS in 1996, was previously associate executive presbyter for resource development, mission interpretation and social justice for the Presbytery of Los Ranchos. During his tenure there, Dolan led two successful capital campaigns raising more than $5.3 million.

In addition, he assisted in the founding of two orphanages, eleven health clinics and eight water wells in Kenya. He also led several "climb-a-thons" to 19,340 foot high Mt. Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, raising thousands of dollars to alleviate poverty in Africa through the Presbyterian Hunger Program.

Dolan’s ministry has included positions in Northern and Southern California. His Northern California positions include Hunger Action Enabler and CROP Walk coordinator for the Presbytery of San Francisco (1993-97). In Southern California, he served as minster of mission and community outreach/director of stewardship (1987-93) at Trinity Presbyterian Church in Santa Ana and was director of mission and evangelism at Bel Air Presbyterian Church in addition to his work for the Presbytery of Los Ranchos.