Ross-Smith Lectures in Pastoral Care
October 12, 2023

The Ross-Smith Lectures in Pastoral Care were endowed as a biennial lecture in 2013 by Calvin and Nancy Ross: “We have endowed this lectureship as our legacy for the pastoral work of the church and to honor the memory of Calvin’s parents, Walter and Mardel Ross, and Nancy’s parents Frank and Hylda Smith. We hope to create interdisciplinary conversations for effective teamwork among ministers, students, educators, laity, medical practitioners, and peace and justice advocates.”

Ministry in a Secular Age: Examining the Changes and Challenges Facing the Church and the Pastor

Andrew Root

Andrew Root (Ph.D., Princeton Theological Seminary) is the Carrie Olson Baalson professor of youth and family ministry at Luther Seminary in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Andrew Root is the Carrie Olson Baalson Professor of Youth and Family Ministry at Luther Seminary, USA. He writes and researches in areas of theology, ministry, culture and younger generations.  His most recent books are Churches and the Crisis of Decline (Baker, 2022), The Congregation in a Secular Age (Baker, 2021), The End of Youth Ministry? (Baker, 2020), The Pastor in a Secular Age: Ministry to People Who No Longer Need God (Baker, 2019), Faith Formation in a Secular Age (Baker, 2017), and Exploding Stars, Dead Dinosaurs, and Zombies: Youth Ministry in the Age of Science (Fortress Press, 2018).


10:30 a.m.Why are They Leaving? Mis-Diagnosing Our Challenges in a Secular Age*
2 p.m.Ministry Inside the Immanent Frame: The Task of Speaking of God in a Secular Age
7 p.m.Exploring Open Takes and Closed Spins: Forming a Congregation for a Secular Age

All lectures will be held in the Mildred Welshimer Phillips Memorial Chapel, B.D. Phillips Building, Emmanuel Christian Seminary at Milligan.

*Lunch will be provided following the 10:30 a.m. session in the Thompson Center. RSVP is not required.

For more information, contact Jack Holland.
For directions, accommodations, and a campus map, visit milligan.edu/location.

Past Speakers

Dr. Jennifer Newsome Martin | Hayden Lecture

Jennifer Newsome Martin (Ph.D., University of Notre Dame, 2012) is a Catholic systematic theologian with particular expertise in the thought of Hans Urs von Balthasar. Her first book, Hans Urs von Balthasar and the Critical Appropriation of Russian Religious Thought (University of Notre Dame Press, 2015) engages the religious character of modern philosophical thought, particularly in the German Idealist and Romantic traditions, as well as pre- and early Soviet era Russian religious philosophy, analyzing the submerged presence of modern speculative Russian thinkers on the aesthetic, historical, and eschatological dimensions of the theology of Swiss Catholic theologian Hans Urs von Balthasar. It was one of 10 winners internationally of the 2017 Manfred Lautenschlaeger Award for Theological Promise (formerly the John Templeton Award for Theological Promise).

Steven L. McKenzie | Hayden Lecture

Steven L. McKenzie

Steven L. (Steve) McKenzie is Professor of Hebrew Bible/Old Testament at Rhodes College, Memphis, TN. His research and teaching interests include: the history of ancient Israel, the literature of the Hebrew Bible, Hebrew language and grammar, the Dead Sea Scrolls, methods of biblical interpretation, and archaeology. He is a past president of the board of governors of the Institute of Egyptian Art and Archaeology at the University of Memphis. He worked for ten years with the Middle East Travel Seminar leading academic tours of Syria, Jordan, the Sinai, Israel, and Greece each summer. He founded (with Richard D. Nelson) the Deuteronomistic History Section at the Society of Biblical Literature annual meeting and has served on numerous editorial boards, including the Journal of Biblical Literature and the Catholic Biblical Quarterly. From 2010-2019 he was associate editor of Vetus Testamentum. He has appeared on the Discovery and History channels and in radio interviews as a consultant on King David and on reading and interpreting the Bible. From 2015-2021 he was a main Old Testament/Hebrew Bible editor for The Encyclopedia of the Bible and its Reception (Brill). His current projects include serving as HB/OT editor for the Oxford Bible Commentary series, HB/OT editor of the Harper Collins Study Bible, editor of the Oxford King James Annotated Bible, co-editing (with Matthieu Richelle) the Oxford Handbook on the Books of Kings, and co-writing (with Rhiannon Graybill and John Kaltner) the commentary on the book of Jonah for the Anchor Bible.

Dr. Ellen Ott Marshall | Ross-Smith Lecture
Ellen Ott Marshall

Dr. Marshall is the associate professor of Christian ethics and conflict transformation at Emory University’s Candler School of Theology.

Marshall’s academic work focuses on contemporary Christian ethics, with particular attention to violence, peacebuilding, conflict transformation, gender, and moral agency. She has edited two volumes and written three books. Her most recent book is An Introduction to Christian Ethics: Conflict, Faith, and Human Life (Westminster John Knox Press, 2018). She also serves on the faculty for the ethics and society doctoral program in Emory’s Graduate Division of Religion. She received a Master of Arts from Notre Dame University and a Master of Arts and doctorate from Vanderbilt University.

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