April 11, 2022
Dr. Christopher Bellitto, Professor of History, Kean University, author of 101 Questions and Answers about Popes and the Papacy suggests that the resignation of Pope Benedict and the election of Pope Francis had few if any precedents to follow. It will encourage future popes to do the same because of age or infirmity, but we’ve learned that some mistakes must be addressed to avoid uncertainty over who is true pope: dress and insignia, name and forms of address, publishing or being interviewed on controversial topics.
Dr. Bellitto is the author of ten books, including most recently Ageless Wisdom: Lifetime Lessons from the Bible (Paulist Press, 2016), along with 101 Questions and Answers on Popes and the Papacy (Paulist Press, 2008), and the companion volumes, The General Councils: A History of the 21 Church Councils from Nicaea to Vatican II and Renewing Christianity: A History of Church Reform from Day One to Vatican II (Paulist Press 2001-2002).
October 11, 2021
Dr. Grafton, Academic Dean and Professor of Christian and Islamic Studies, Hartford Seminary, discusses his newest book which he edited, More Than a Cup of Coffee and Tea which was published this year. The book explores some of the important documents and themes that have emerged over the years in the area of Christian-Muslim relations. The book is accessible to both church leaders and laypersons. The global perspective of the book highlights programs and experiences around the world where Lutherans and other Christians encounter and build on the experiences of their Muslim neighbors. In his reflections on seminaries and Muslim issues, Grafton was enthusiastic about the number of seminaries who are including Islamic studies in their courses of studies. He feels that such additions to the curriculum help rostered church leaders to educate congregational members against Islamophobia.
May 10, 2021
Susan Tarr, retired librarian from the Library of Congress and active layperson discusses her activities in the church during Covid-19. The pandemic prompted a number of changes in providing Christian education for members at The Church of the Covenant (Presbyterian) in Arlington, VA. As an active layperson in the congregation, she described her interest in Christian education. With the development of the Covid-19 she was challenged to expand her familiarity with technology. She talked about involvement with two classes within the congregation: the adult Bible class and the confirmation class with youth. Her particular concern was for the youth. After her retirement from the Library of Congress where she was the Executive Director of the Federal Library and Information Center Committee for the last 10 years of a 30 year career in the system, she completed a Theological Studies degree at Wesley Seminary in D.C. In the program she discussed how that educational experience prepared her for the challenges of teaching during this pandemic.
December 28, 2020
Dr. Charles Leonard, Professor of Practical Theology at United Lutheran Seminary; pastor of St. Marks Lutheran Church, Philadelphia, PA talks about the top story for religion in 2020. COVID-19 and its effect on congregational life. The conversation included the pandemic and church membership, connecting members with each other in this virtual environment, difficulties in Christian education, and post pandemic changes to church culture as we have known it in the past.
May 4, 2020
Rev. Peter Kuhn, Director of Spiritual Care and Education, WellSpan Health joins The Seminary Explores for a conversation about spiritual care in some of South Central Pennsylvania’s hospitals. Like all hospital departments right now they are rapidly adapting to how they provide care and education in changing circumstances. Kuhn is an ACPE Clinical Educator and a Board Certified Chaplain. He studied Theology at the University of Heidelberg in Germany. His Supervisor training is from Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem, N.C.
March 9, 2020
Dr. Darlis Swan, the Ecumenical Representative of the Lower Susquehanna Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), details the ecumenical movement in the United States. She defined “ecumenical” and went on to share her interest in ecumenism from her seminary studies to her work in the Office of Ecumenical Affairs of the ELCA. She also discussed:
- The transition from the ecumenical movement from the U.S. to the global context.
- Suggested readings on the ecumenical movement
- The involvement of congregational members in ecumenical work
- Ecumenical relationships of the ELCA
February 24, 2020
Interfaith Connection’s executive producer and host Jackie Fuller joins Katy Giebenhain for a conversation about Fuller’s interfaith work in the Washington, D.C. Metro area and the upcoming Religion Communication Congress 2020 which is sponsored by The Religion Communicators Council.
The March 17-21 Religion Communication Congress 2020 includes speakers:
- Wajahat Ali, CNN Contributor and Contributing Op-Ed Writer to The New York Times
- Rabbi Rick Jacobs, President of the Union for Reform Judaism
- Amelia Kegan, Legislative Director, Domestic Policy at the Friends Committee on National Legislation
- Dr. Simran Jeet Singh, Senior Religion Fellow for the Sikh Coalition and a Visiting Scholar at NYU’s Center for Religion and Media and others.
Thank you to the Church of the Epiphany for kindly providing our interview site.
January 13, 2020
Pastor Andrew Geib, Associate Pastor, St. James Lutheran Church in Gettysburg, identified nine top stories in religion for the year 2019: ELCA Church Sanctuary issue, United Methodist possible split, Women in the Church, Collapse of Christianity, the burning of Notre Dame in Paris, and more. While the stories were mostly grim, he ends with word of hope for listeners.
November 18, 2019
Gettysburg C.A.R.E.S. is a local, inter-church, homeless initiative with no national affiliation, but can serve as a model for churches everywhere who want to serve their communities in an area of dramatic need: overnight accommodations for the homeless. Founded by Pastor Michael Allwein, Senior Pastor, St. James Lutheran Church, Gettysburg, C.A.R.E.S involves a dozen churches and volunteers who host, supervise and serve breakfast to dozens of individuals every night from October to April. Individuals and families are housed overnight in churches and provided with breakfast, and in a Resource House next to St. James, given access to showers and computers. They are also served by a medical clinic, social workers, and a full-time director.
The correct File has been uploaded as of 11/19/19 7:12 am. Sorry for the mix-up.
November 4, 2019
Dr. Christian B. Keller, Professor of History and General Dwight D. Eisenhower Chair of National Security, Department of National Security and Strategy, U.S. Army War College, Carlisle, PA, and author of The Great Partnership: Robert E. Lee, Stonewall Jackson, and the Fate of the Confederacy, argues that the Christian connection between Lee and Jackson was a significant glue that bonded the two generals’ friendship, and this in turn supported their strong professional relationship. Although one was Episcopal and the other a Presbyterian, they were both firm believers in Divine Providence, and as evangelical providentialists, were not that different from many Americans of that era.