Elizabeth Magill ’09 M.Div.
B.A. College of William and Mary 2006
In August of this year, I will begin serving as an associate priest at St. David’s Episcopal Church, in Austin, TX. While sharing in all liturgical and pastoral responsibilities with other clergy, my primary focus will be on the youth of the parish. St. David’s is a dynamic, urban parish where people seek to serve Christ through others in all that they do—worshipping together, serving others, and becoming faithful witnesses to the world. I am looking forward to learning from the diverse staff of the parish, including full time social workers, pre-school teachers, clergy, and lay personnel.
My time at YDS has been undeniably transformative. I was fortunate enough to be able to take advantage of many of the wonderful opportunities available from Berkeley, the Divinity School, and the larger University community. I never could have anticipated how the worship life would change me. Starting the day with Berkeley Morning Prayer and then being immersed in Marquand worship laid the foundation of my time at the Divinity School. I am leaving with a desire to share the professionally managed, creative ways in which people from all backgrounds may be invited to worship. Classes were enjoyable and stimulating, ranging from strenuous theoretical topics to the practical ministry. My peers were engaging and encouraging in their collaboration, but I was most taken with the professors’ willingness to guide and nurture us academically and spiritually.
As a young woman arriving at Yale Divinity School shortly after completing my undergraduate work, I was immediately welcomed into the community. I hope to maintain these relationships with faculty and colleagues as partners in ministry. As I begin a new stage of my journey, I find myself reflecting on the reasons why I chose Berkeley Divinity School at Yale in the first place. I am very much aware of the ways in which we live in a secular society. In order to be able to make the church relevant, we must be able to have conversations with the diverse peoples we draw in, and the many we have yet to reach. While as YDS, I was surrounded by intelligent thinkers, passionate activists, and deeply spiritual persons from all backgrounds. With deep gratitude, I take a piece of each of them with me, as I seek to serve Christ in all persons.