Alumni Awards 2011
Distinction in Congregational Ministry
Otis Moss III ’95 M.Div.
Otis Moss III is pastor of Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, IL, the largest congregation in the UCC. Prior to joining Trinity, which describes itself as “unashamedly Black and unapologetically Christian,” he served as pastor of the historic Tabernacle Baptist Church in Augusta, GA., where, under his leadership, the congregation grew from under 200 to over 2,100 members. He has been praised for his passion for youth and intergenerational ministry, which led to his creation of a consulting group, Issachar Movement, that works to bridge the generation gap within churches and to train a new generation of prophetic church leadership. Moss has spoken and preached around the globe, and Newsweek magazine singled him out as one of God’s leading “foot soldiers.” He has also been highly praised for his strong leadership of Trinity following the controversy surrounding then-presidential candidate Barack Obama and Jeremiah Wright, Moss’s predecessor in the Trinity pulpit.
Distinction in Theological Education
Barbara Rossing ’81 M.Div.
Barbara Rossing is professor of New Testament at the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago. Before joining the seminary’s faculty in 1994, she pastored congregations in Minnesota and Washington, and was chaplain at Harvard University Divinity School. She has lectured and preached widely on faith, ecology, and the Apocalypse, and is involved in World Council of Churches and Lutheran World Federation international climate change advocacy work. [She was an advisor to the Lutheran World Federation Assembly in Winnipeg in 2003 and was one of the principal authors of the Bible studies for that event in the book For the Healing of the World.] Her articles have appeared in Dialog, Currents in Theology and Mission, The Christian Century, and The Lutheran magazines. Among her books are The Choice Between Two Cities: Whore, Bride, and Empire in the Apocalypse (1999), New Proclamation Year C (2001); The Rapture Exposed: The Message of Hope in the Book of Revelation (2004); and Journeys through Revelation: Apocalyptic Hope for Today (2010).
William Sloane Coffin '56 Award for Peace and Justice
Christopher Doucot ’08 M.A.R.
Christopher Doucot is a founder of the Hartford Catholic Worker Community, a community-based program that opened in 1993 and “invites a counter-cultural commitment to material poverty and hospitality.” The HCWC features after-school and Saturday morning activities, tutoring, and summer camp opportunities that allow urban children to experience nature and relationships outside the pressures of urban living. Doucot is noted for being “fully committed to tangibly and purposefully serving the poor around him…” Living a life of voluntary poverty, he has welcomed homeless persons into his home, tutored children, and has actively resisted war through participation in non-violent protests in pursuit of world peace, which have taken him to Iraq, Palestine, Bosnia, and other conflict-ridden places. And he has prayed for peace outside the Pentagon and White House.
Lux et Veritas
Evalyn M. Wakhusama ’01, M.Div., ’02 S.T.M.
Evalyn M. Wakhusama is the founder/executive director of the Women’s Initiative in Knowledge and Survival (WIKS), a Kenyan NGO particularly concerned with helping disadvantaged women, as well as disadvantaged and vulnerable children of both genders. Founded upon Wakhusama’s return to Kenya after graduating from YDS, WIKS initially began by helping to provide lunch for destitute public school students and to find tuition assistance for outstanding women scholars who might not otherwise be able to complete their educations. The biggest WIKS project to date by far is the Nambale Magnet School, founded in 2009 in Nambale, Western Province, Kenya. This school seeks to educate children orphaned or made extremely vulnerable by the AIDS crisis—taking extremely disadvantaged students at the beginning of primary school and mixing them with tuition-paying students to overcome some of the class barriers endemic to Kenyan society. Currently in its third year of operation with 127 students, it is supported by donors in the U.S. and Kenya, including many churches and individuals associated with YDS. As a YDS student, Wakhusama did an internship at Christ Episcopal Church in Bethany, CT. She is ordained in the Anglican Church of Kenya and is pastor of St. John’s Anglican Church at the Kenya Agricultural Research Institute.