Faculty, Staff, Student & Alumni Highlights: October 2013

Written by Ryan Fallgren
October 21, 2013



Dean Mark S. Markuly, PhD
This month on October 8, Dean Markuly gave a webinar entitled "Christian Unity in a Polarized World" for 355 participants over two sessions and across the globe, including from Europe, Guam, the Bahamas, Canada and the United States of America. The Dean was also interviewed on KIRO radio in both August and September about the social activity of Pope Francis. Listen to the most recent interview on September 20 here, which starts at 4:22).

Dr. Christie Eppler
Dr. Eppler presented at the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapy national conference in Portland, Oregon this month on behalf of her peer reviewed article "Exploring the Intersections of Resiliency and Spirituality using Narrative Therapy Techniques when working with Adolescents and Adults." Dr. Eppler is also teaching "STMC 553 Couples Therapy" this quarter, helping students explore the "meaning" of couplehood from various ecumenical and inter-religious traditions (Episcopalian, Roman Catholic, AME-Zion, Polydiest and more). So far, students have engaged lively discussions of metaphors and rituals that unite couples from a variety of faiths. Also in recent news, Dr. Eppler has been officially appointed as co-director of the school's Relationship & Pastoral Therapy graduate program.

Rev. Dr. Faustino (Tito) Cruz, SM
Dr. Cruz has contributed to a number of works in publication release this Fall 2013.

  • ?Touch it! Touch it! Reframing Teaching and Learning through James Turrell?s Acton.? Teaching Theology and Religion.
  • Encyclopedia of Christian Education, edited by George Thomas Kurian and Mark A. Lamport, s.v. ?Dialogue Education.?? New York: Scarecrow Press.
  • Encyclopedia of Christian Education, edited by George Thomas Kurian and Mark A. Lamport, s.v.? ?Transformational Leadership.? New York: Scarecrow Press.
  • Encyclopedia of Christian Education, edited by George Thomas Kurian and Mark A. Lamport, s.v. ?Alfonso Nebreda, SJ.?? New York: Scarecrow Press.

Dr. Mark Lloyd Taylor
Dr. Taylor and current Master of Divinity student, Alissabeth Newton, presented ?Kierkegaard on Children: Their Play with the Holy Cannot Encompass the Paradox of Jesus Christ? at the Seventh International Kierkegaard Conference sponsored by the Hong Kierkegaard Library at St. Olaf College in Northfield, MN on June 26.? This paper continues Taylor and Newton?s work in ?child theology.?? The conference itself marked the two hundredth anniversary of S?ren Kierkegaard?s birth and drew scholars from all over the world (including Portugal, Brazil, Australia, and Nigeria).? Taylor also served as commentator on the paper by Steven Emmanuel from Virginia Wesleyan University, ?Contemplating the Lily and the Bird: Spiritual Exercise in Kierkegaard?s Devotional Discourses.?

Dr. Cynthia Moe-Lobeda
Adjunct faculty and faculty within Seattle University's Theological and Religious Studies department, Dr. Cynthia Moe-Lobeda, was recently appointed to be the leader and presenter for the Christian cycle of readings at the 2014 International Theology Conference of the Shalom Hartman Institute, an interfaith conference held in Jerusalem. Dr. Moe-Lobeda was also the featured presenter at Earth Ministry's 19th Annual Celebration of St. Francis on October 3, sharing on "Eco-justice, Social Justice and the Christian Conscience" at St. John United Lutheran Church.

Dr. Andrew Davis
Dr. Davis just received the final proofs for his book "Tel Dan in its Northern Cultic Context" which will be released in November. More information coming soon! His article looking at the Jacob story from an African-American perspective, entitled "Wrestling Jacob in the Book of Genesis and August Wilson's Fences," was accepted for publication in the Oxford Journal of Literature and Theology. Dr. Davis presented a paper at the Catholic Biblical Association meeting in August entitled "Temple Renovation in Israelite History and Memory," and will be presenting at the Society of Biblical Literature in November entitled "Ruth and Esther as the Thematic Frame of the Megilloth." Dr. Davis travelled to Washington D.C. this summer for a special seminar at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, and wrote about his research and learning in a blog post, here.

Dr. Michael Reid Trice
This summer, Dr. Trice engaged the second year of a fellowship in Jerusalm at the Hartman Institute for the Christian Leadership Initiative.? Dr. Trice reflected on his experience in a blog post, here. He additionally submitted a paper to the Renewal Conference for the Lutheran World Communion entitled "There's an App for That! Post Christian Lutheran Encounter" and published a chapter in the book "Christian-Muslim Relations in the Anglican and Lutheran Communions: Historical Encounters and Contemporary Projects."

Rev. Dr. Michael Kinnamon??
Dr. Kinnamon is presenting at the 2013 World Council of Churches gathering in Busan, South Korea. Details, including a download of his talk, here. Dr. Kinnamon contributed an article entitled "Signs of Hope for an Ecumenical Church" to the July newsletter for the Disciples Seminary Foundation. Download and read the article SUSTM_RevDrMichaelKinnamon_DisciplesSeminaryFoundationNL-July2013.



Lisa Gustaveson
Program Manager, Faith & Family Homelessness Project
In July, Lisa presented at the annual national conference for the National Alliance to End Homelessness. The conference was sold out at over 1,400 participants and ran on several tracks, one of which was "advocacy." Community partners of the Project presented, including from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The Spectator, Seattle University's student newspaper, published an article on the topic of homelessness in Seattle, interviewing Lisa and featuring the Project early October, here. Lisa was interviewed live by Moody Radio about the Project's work with faith communities as well.

Colette Casavant
Student Community & Admissions Coordinator
Colette was asked to present at the 2014 Student Personnel Administrators' Conference for the Association of Theological Schools in Orlando, Florida in April. She will be presenting on the topic of "Student Community Engagement: Best Practices for Fostering Student Communities" and will review the results of pending dissertation research. Colette was also nominated to be Vice-Chair of the Student Personnel Administrators Network (SPAN) Steering Committee. The SPAN Steering Committee provides a collegial network for support and information sharing for deans of students, admissions directors, financial aid officials, counseling services staff, career services personnel and registrars; provides educational and professional development opportunities; and serves as an advocate for the place of student services within the professional realm of theological education.


Crystal Zerfoss
Master of Divinity

Crystal is the school's new Graduate Assistant for Stewardship Scheduling & Events. Crystal is a new Master of Divinity student this fall, and has been discerning her call to ministry for well over a decade. She will be seeking ordination within the Unitarian Universalist Assocation. She says: "I am most excited to be beginning my studies here at Seattle University! I am very excited about the program. I was attracted to this graduate assistant position for the opportunity to share my excitement with supporters of our school and to play a role in the continued success of the education provided here. I look forward to meeting everyone and being a part of this great institution for the next few years!" She hails from the east coast, having grown up in southwestern Virginia and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from Penn State.? When she's not reading for class, Crystal enjoys biking, kayaking, volleyball, hiking, board games, jigsaw puzzles, and live theatre. She has also been known to juggle fire and stilt walk in her free time!

Jeny Carlson
Master of Divinity, specialization in Chaplaincy
Jeny is returning to Seattle University's School of Theology and Ministry for a Master of Divinity with a Chaplaincy specialization as she pursues PC (USA) ordination and discerns her call to chaplaincy. Jeny is returning to her studies at the school, having graduated in 2011 with a MA in Pastoral Studies degree. Jeny is also a new Graduate Assistant for Marketing & Communications. She says "I adore the School of Theology and Ministry at SeattleU. Being able to go out into the community and talk about our amazing school is a joy and honor.? The thing I love best about Seattle University, and the school in particular, is our dedication to diversity and social justice within our faith communities.? The formation we gain here is what will allow us to share the love, spirit and wisdom of the holy with a world that longs for peaceful community." When Jeny is not in class or working with the marcom team, she is a mom three kids and wife of 14 years.? On September 22, Jeny preached at Mt. Baker Park Presbyterian, on the passage of Luke 16:1-13--the story of the dishonest manager and one of Jesus? most confusing parables. On October 6, Jeny spoke at Queen Anne Presbyterian, preaching on 2 Timothy 1:3-14 about what it looks like to live out faith.

John Forman
Master of Divinity
John just released his first book, "Integral Leadership: The Next Half-Step," through SUNY Press. As a founding member of Wilber?s Integral Institute and Integral Spiritual Center, John has had the opportunity to meet and befriend a number of intellectual and spiritual heroes, many of whom provided guidance and insights for the book. John runs a small consulting business, Integral Development Associates, working with organizations of all kinds primarily in the areas of organization and leadership development based on a body of evidence-based developmental schemas under the umbrella philosophy of Ken Wilber?s integral theory and methodology. John has additionally presented papers at the New England Complex Systems Institute and the International Society of Systems Sciences, and had a set of papers included in a collection presented by a colleague to the United Nations. He is a regular contributor to Nectar of NonDual Truth, an Adviatic-based magazine interested in universal teachings from multiple traditions, and has published dozens of articles in magazines ranging in diversity from Nursing Outlook to BioCycle to American City & County and co-wrote a chapter expanding John Kotter's change management approach in the book, "Implementing Service and Support Management Processes: A Practical Guide."? John contributed to the drafting of the charter for the national Campaign for Better Health based in Washington D.C., and sits on the board of directors of Global Integral Research Corporation.? He has also served on the board of advisors for St. Placid Priory, Transfiguration Monastery, and serves several other boards and organizational governing bodies, including as the Episcopal student liaison for the school?s ecumenical Outreach Teams. John has begun an internship in hospital chaplaincy at Swedish-Edmonds, while continuing to be a postulant for the Episcopal Holy Orders in the Diocese of Olympia. John has also been married for 25 years and has been a father for 22 of those years.

Linda Gasparovic
Master of Divinity
As announced last month, Linda is studying abroad this quarter at the Ecumenical Institute at Bossey in Switzerland. Linda will be posting reflections to her blog throughout her trip, here.

Michaela Kearns
Master of Arts in Pastoral Studies
Michaela is the school's new Graduate Assistant for Ecumenical and Interreligious Dialogue. Michaela is beginning her second and final year in the Pastoral Studies program. Her undergraduate studies were also in theology, with a focus in youth ministry.? After working in youth ministry for five years, Michaela wanted to go back to school to answer some of my theological questions and to be trained in facilitating Ignatian retreats. I currently have an internship in Seattle University's Campus Ministry in Ignatian spirituality. Michaela shares: "I am excited to be a part of the Ecumenical and Interreligious Dialogue team in working to cultivate ecumenical and interfaith relationships.? I look forward to learning about how others live their faith and church in the world and how we can work together for understanding and the common good. Already the events and programs planned for the year intrigue, challenge, and encourage me to grow in my own faith journey."

Ben St. Hilaire
Master of Arts in Transformational Leadership
Ben is the school's new Graduate Assistant for Technology and Distance Learning. A former elementary music and reading teacher, Ben came to the Transformational Leadership program to pursue his deep interest in delving into the connections between values, leadership, and social change. He also hopes to strengthen and develop his own personal skills in facilitating meaningful dialogue about important issues amidst conflict. Ben has also completed over two years of pre-doctoral coursework in educational leadership & policy studies at the University of Washington, focusing on organizational theory and research methodology as it applies to the public school system.


Tandi Rogers
Master of Arts in Pastoral Studies, 2013
Just two months after graduating from Seattle University's School of Theology and Ministry, Tandi was ordained on August 3 at 10:30am by the Tahoma Unitarian Universalist Congregation. Associational leaders, members of congregations from around the Pacific NW District, interfaith leaders, and members of the congregation Tandi helped plant, all came together to affirm and celebrate.
Maggie Breen
Master of Divinity, 2013
Maggie Breen was honored this month as one of three "Citizen of the Year" award recipients in The City of Renton for 2013. The award was given from the Chamber of Commerce, Rotary and the City of Renton, and it honors Maggie's ecumenical leadership and her work building partnerships between faith based organizations and other groups.??