Tuesday, May 15, 2012

New Beginnings

A lot has happened this past week in the LSTC community.  As with the ending of any academic year, there have been many good-byes shared as students, staff, and faculty leave this place for a time or for good.  Among the many amazing people who graduated on Sunday were two of my closest friends at LSTC.  Justin and Mae have been along side me (and the rest of my class) since the beginning, but since their degree programs were different, they were able to graduate earlier than the rest of us.  We've spent long days studying, long nights playing games, and many long conversations ranging between theology and comic books.  Though Justin and Mae aren't moving away immediately, I know they'll be going to his first call soon, and the unique time we've spent together in this community will come to an end.

May May, Justin, and Mae; three wonderful Baptists who made this Lutheran seminary fantastic.

But, with that end comes new beginnings.  This fall, new students will arrive for their fist year of seminary; old students will return from internship; and Justin and Mae will begin a new chapter in following their call to serve God in this world.  I will miss them, but I also know that I will see them again, and the mere fact that I was able to befriend two Baptists in a Lutheran seminary gives me great hope for a future of unity between Christians, as my generation continues the great task of reconciliation among all people.

Speaking of reconciliation, I should mention that LSTC's board voted to make our community a Reconciling in Christ seminary - a place that actively works to include and welcome people of all sexual orientations and gender identities.  In fact, I've always assumed LSTC was already an RIC seminary, based on the general vibe of welcome and inclusivity here, but today's vote makes that "vibe" more official and intentional.

And, to add to all the newness and changes, we now have a new president at LSTC!  James Nieman will be joining our community in the fall, and from the buzz around the community, everyone seems very excited about the newness he's bringing to us.  To read more about it, check out the official press release.

So many changes are happening here.  As my internship winds down, the thought of returning to classes next year is getting to be more and more exciting!

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