As the interim president, dean, and faculty of Christian Theological Seminary, we join leaders in this country and around the world in condemning the recent violence and hatred in Charlottesville, Virginia – a vibrant city of vital history and beautiful diversity. We offer prayers for the family and loved ones of the woman killed, Heather Heyer, and the two state troopers who died in a helicopter crash while providing support to those managing the chaos on the ground. We give thanks for the religious leaders who courageously bore witness to God’s love amid the tragedy and will continue to hold in our hearts the city of Charlottesville and all who emerge from this tragedy with seen and unseen wounds.
We believe the scriptures to be true – that all people are created in God’s image and that God seeks the well being of all people – but our inability or unwillingness to live well together has been exposed again. In this case, instead of affirming the equal, infinite, God-given value of all people, a group of people identifying themselves as White Nationalists have asserted their supremacy over other children of God. The gospel of Jesus Christ makes no room for racism and the hideous violence and hatred it spawns.
Nor do we. As leaders and faculty of an institution committed to preparing women and men to witness to the gospel of love, justice and reconciliation, we not only condemn and pray; we also challenge ourselves, our students, all churches and other institutions of public leadership to take a lead in repenting of racism and in protesting the violence that racism breeds.
Christian Theological Seminary is committed to preparing leaders to heal, lead and love this world that God loves. Together, let’s stand up and speak out for those who are on the receiving end of hate in any place and any time.
Rev Dr. Bill Kincaid
Interim President and Herald B. Monroe Associate Professor of Leadership and Ministry Studies
Dr. Leah Gunning Francis
Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the Faculty, and Associate Professor of Christian Education and Practical Theology
Rev. Dr. Ronald J. Allen
Professor of Preaching and Gospels and Letters
Dr. Matthias Beier
Associate Professor of Pastoral Theology and Mental Health Counseling
Dr. Jacqueline M. Braeger
Assistant Professor of Marriage and Family Therapy
Rev. Dr. Suzanne Coyle
Associate Professor of Pastoral Theology and Marriage and Family Therapy
Rev. Dr. Christina Jones Davis
Assistant Professor of Pastoral Care and Counseling
Dr. Felicity Kelcourse
Associate Professor of Pastoral Care and Counseling
Dr. Helene T. Russell
Associate Professor of Theology
Rev. Dr. Scott Seay
Associate Professor of the History of Christianity
Rev. Dr. Frank A. Thomas
Nettie Sweeney and Hugh Th. Miller Professor of Homiletics
Rev. Dr. Robert Saler
Research Professor of Lutheran Studies
For more information:
Rev. Nathan Day Wilson
Director of Communications
Christian Theological Seminary