Alumni Newsletter, December 2012

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Alumni News  December, 2012                          

Alumni Survey

Under the leadership of Rev. Dr. Matthew Myer Boulton, CTS is going through an extraordinary time of growth and change.  The results from last summer's alumni survey continue to offer us guidance and insight as we navigate this growth.  As the seminary positions itself for the future, the CTS Alumni Association will be an important part of those changes.  So in that spirit the Alumni Board presents these survey findings.

Alumni Association Membership:  Many of our peer institutions have alumni associations which incorporate membership dues and benefits.  The survey reflected that half of the respondents would be willing to pay yearly dues with perhaps a benefit package attached.  The Alumni Board is researching options for a membership package. 

Alumni Reunion:   Of our responders two-thirds said that they would be interested in attending a reunion event depending on the timing.  Work has already begun to develop a signature event for CTS alumni.  

Annual Fund:   As of this newsletter, only 11% of our Alumni give to the Annual Fund.  This puts us at the bottom of the list compared to our peer institutions. When asked about giving to the Annual Fund, 55% have given in the last five years with 45% indicating they had not.  The Annual Fund is the underpinning of all we do at CTS and these numbers reflect room for growth.  

Contact method:  73% of the survey responders said that email is their preferred method of contact.  They want to hear about CTS news, events and alumni updates.    Please make sure that we have your correct email address, so that we can keep in touch!

Karen Horsman
Gift Officer


Roxie Jo McNelly ’12, July 14th, Avon Christian Church, Avon, IN.

Jane Ann Stanley ’12, August 12th, Greenfield Christian Church, Greenfield, IN.

William Almodovar ‘12, August 18th, Primera Iglesia Cristiana, Kissimmee, FL.

Allissa Santoro Williams ’12, September 9th, Central Christian Church, Terre Haute, IN.

Michael Louis Gilbert ’12, September 16th, Avon Christian Church, Avon, IN.

Loretta Thomas ’12, October 14th, Ray of Hope Christian Church, Decatur, GA.

Tanya Douglas-Cain ’12, November 18th, Light of the World Christian Church, Indianapolis, IN.

Steven Garrett ’12, November 18th, Light of the World Christian Church, Indianapolis, IN.

LuWanna Jennings ’12, November 18th, Light of the World Christian Church, Indianapolis, IN.

Monique Spells ’12, November 18th, Light of the World Christian Church, Indianapolis, IN.

Mackcine Jordan ’12, November 25th, Westview Christian Church, Indianapolis, IN.


Melinda Kammerer Petek ’08, and husband Michael welcomed their son Benjamin David into the world on September 13th.

Laura Hamm Peterson ’07, and husband Mark became proud parents of Tobias on November 16th.  Grandparents Dick ’74 and Mindy Hamm are thrilled.


Rita Raymond ’64, died March 23rd near
Indianapolis, IN.

Wheeler Harden ’63, died October 24th in
Columbus, OH.

Teddy Turner '55, died November 29th in
Spokane, WA.

Ministry News and Notes

T. Garrott Benjamin ’67, ’90, has retired as Senior Pastor of Light of the World Christian Church in Indianapolis after 43 years of service.

Robert Brite ’80 began this fall as Transitional Pastor at Memorial Christian Church in Ann Arbor, MI.

Mark Condrey ’06, began work as Senior Minister at Zionsville CC in August of this year.

Roxie McNelly ’12 has been called as Senior Pastor of First Christian Church in Centralia, MO.

Samuel Robles, Jr. ’09, pastor of Arise Christian Church in Orlando, FL, is the recipient of the 2012 Fred Craddock Award for Excellence in Preaching.  This award is given in partnership by Disciples of Christ Historical Society and the Craddock Center.

Michelle Peterson ’08, began a new job this month as Director of Spiritual Care for a Milwaukee area independent living facility.

Michael Sinclair ‘94, began ministry at Central Christian Church in Connorsville, IN on November 1st.

Denise Whiteside ’09, began ministry in October as Senior Pastor to First Christian Church in Chicago Heights, IL.


Clergy Renewal Project @ CTS

The Center for Pastoral Excellence at Christian Theological Seminary (CTS), created recently through an $8 million Lilly Endowment grant, will now administer the Endowment’s national and Indiana clergy renewal programs .

The two programs will complement the new CTS center’s strategic initiatives that seek to support the ministries of outstanding pastors serving Christian congregations throughout the United States. The change of administration of the programs will be effective for the 2013
National Clergy Renewal Program  and the 2013 Clergy Renewal Program for Indiana Congregations . No substantial changes to the programs’ selection criteria are anticipated for 2013. CTS expects to award as many as 20 grants of up to $50,000 each to Indiana congregations to support renewal programs for their pastors and 80 awards of similar amounts to congregations in other states.

Pastors need time away from their congregations to gain new perspectives,” notes the Rev. Dr. Robert Saler, newly named director of the Lilly Endowment Clergy Renewal Programs at CTS. “The clergy renewal programs free them up to pursue interests that will renew their passions for ministry, and the renewal leaves also give congregations opportunities to rediscover their own gifts and strengths while their pastors are away.”

For more information and application forms,
click here .


Field Education Graduate Survey

Dr. Bill Kincaid, who teaches in the Christian Ministries field and directs the Field Education program, has been interviewing and surveying CTS graduates from the years 2001-2011 who are engaged in pastoral ministry. Kincaid’s research focuses especially on the transition from seminary to congregation, surprises in ministry, and particular areas of ministry for which graduates felt decidedly unprepared. If you are a CTS graduate from the years 2001-2011 and are willing to talk or correspond confidentially about the preparation for ministry you received at CTS for pastoral ministry, please contact Bill Kincaid at . Thank  you.

Dr. Teresa McIlwain ‘92 and her husband Michael, visiting the campus as part of the celebration of their 30th  wedding anniversary.

Millie Zug ‘91, Trayce Stewart ‘11, Deb Bolen ‘11 and Bill Edwards ‘83 at the Ohio Regional Assembly of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) held in Columbus, OH.







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