People Notes


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A film produced by PictureWise Productions, a UK-based TV and video production company that counts Kathleen LaCamera ’83 M.Div.among its partners, has received top honors at the 2011 How-Do Public Services Communications Awards.  The film, Dying for a Laugh, features a half-dozen celebrity comedians tackling death from a humorous perspective, in an attempt to get people laughing and talking about a theme that is among the most taboo of subjects.

Episcopal Church Bishop of Virginia Shannon S. Johnston will ordain two YDS alums during ceremonies to be held at St. Stephen’s Church in Richmond on Dec. 10, 10:30 am.  Ordinands include Carmen Christine  Germino ’07 M.Div., ’11 S.T.M. and Evelyn Wheeler ’11 M.Div.

Susan R. Garrett, former YDS Lillian Claus Associate Professor of New Testament, has been elected to be the next dean of Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary, beginning June 1, 2012. She will succeed David C. Hester, who will be honored in the spring for his seven years of service and leadership as seminary dean.  Seminary President Michael Jinkins said, "I am profoundly grateful that Dr. Garrett has discerned a call to serve as Academic Dean of our Seminary. The Dean is the principal advocate and supporter of the school's core educational mission, the hinge position upon which the most vital aspects of the school turn. I am confident that Sue Garrett has the gifts, abilities, and character to be a superb Dean.  Oct. 27, 2011, Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary announcement.

YDS Professor MIrolsav Volf’s book A Public Faith was named among the 100 best books of 2011 by Publisher’s Weekly.  PW’s announcement said, “The gifted Christian theologian answers a pressing question in a pluralistic culture, arguing that nonexclusionary theological truth is not only possible but also socially healthy.”

Henri Nouwen' s book Home Tonight (in Dutch, Eindelijk) was named "best 20th-century spiritual book" in the Netherlands in November according to a contest organized by the Dutch newspaper Trouw.   His brother Laurent came and accepted the award on behalf of Henri.  The late Henri Nouwen was a very popular member of the YDS faculty in the 1970s and was a priest of the Archdiocese of Utrecht.

"If we continue to think creatively outside of the institutional church, we will discover the myriad ways that we are already church -- in our work, in our families, in our volunteering, in our communities. We must discover all of the ways in which we bring the very life of God into our world. We must discover all of the ways that we are doing the traditional work of the church, even if it is well outside the walls of the institution."  Jamie Manson ’02 M.Div., Nov. 9, 2011, National Catholic Reporter, in the story “Call to Action keynote speaker addresses grace on the margins.”

"I remember that night in October leaving the conversation thinking how much she cares about people.  I left the conversation admiring her desire to see people be better and to impact the lives of individuals so that they can live up to their full potential." Rev. Nathaniel Wright, pastor of Calvary Baptist Church I Ithaca, NY, Nov. 10, 2011,, speaking about Margie Mayson ’77 M.Div., in the article “St. Paul's Methodist mourns pastor, Margie Mayson dies while visiting daughter in Oregon.”

"She has the ability to be very open and respectful and is eager to engage in new ideas and new things, but she also has the ability to be critical, to make sure we're living out our mission as a staff."  Karl Kuhn, associate professor of religion at Lakeland College, Nov. 11, 2011, Sheboygan (WI) Press, speaking about Kelly Stone ’06 M.Div., in the article “Chaplain's next chapter: Lakeland College's Rev. Kelly Stone headed for Wellesley

"I felt as though I had discovered a missing piece of the puzzle, which was the convergence of the history, the tradition and reason, all packaged beautifully within the order and dignity of the liturgy."  Cameron Randle ’08 M.Div., Nov. 12, 2011, (VA), in the article “Winding spiritual trip to shore.”

“In many ways they’re like a small family and I’ve gotten to know everyone very well. It will be a larger family at the cathedral but it will be harder to get to know the people there, as well as I’ve gotten to know the people here.”  Wallace Marsh ’07 M.Div., Nov. 19, 2011, The Marietta (GA) Daily Journal, in the article “A new journey: Pastor leaving Cobb with fond memories,” about Marsh’s transition from a small church to the Cathedral of St. Phillip in Atlanta.

Margot E. Fassler's book The Virgin of Chartres: Making History through Liturgy and the Arts (Yale University Press, 2010) has won the Ace/Mercers' International Book Award. The award is made by Art and Christianity Enquiry annually to a “book which makes an outstanding contribution to the dialogue between religious faith and the visual arts.” Fassler, former director of the Yale Institute of Sacred Music, is the Keough-Hesburgh Professor of Music History and Liturgy at the University of Notre Dame.

"This is a place where people are game to try new things.”  Kelly Moughty ’12 M.Div., Nov. 21, 2011, DarienPatch, in the article “Darien Native Interns at Trumbull Church.”

Social media technology company Quepasa Corporation, owner of popular Latino online social network and myYearbook, has announced the appointment of mobile industry veteran Fred Beckley ’89 J.D., ’90 M.A.R. as general counsel and executive vice president of business affairs. Beckley has extensive experience spearheading mergers and acquisitions activities for both domestic and international companies, and developing the business and legal framework for affiliated enterprises.  Nov. 28, 2011,

 “It’s been hard for me to be away from my Cathedral family as you’ve undergone all the challenges this fall, and you remain in my daily prayers. Please know that the work you all do is critical. When people learn that my home parish is WNC, to a person, I hear how much the Cathedral means to them, and a personal story about a time they worshiped or visited, and how much the community – you – welcomed them, deepening their relationship with God. Some people have told me their visit has been a pivotal point in their spiritual journey.” Sally Slater ’14 M.Div., in a “Postulant Letter” posted on the “Congregational Letters” section of  Washington National Cathedral’s web site.

"He simply spoke of the gospel so compellingly that I wanted know more -- about the way of life he was describing, about why his words struck me with such force and about how I could learn to use language that way, too."  Barbara Brown Taylor ’76 M.Div., Nov. 27, 2011,, commenting about renowned preacher Fred Craddock in the article “A preaching 'genius' faces his toughest convert.”