AUSTIN (May 17, 2018) – Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary graduating senior Chelsea McCutchin has been selected to receive the 2018 Chidester Preaching Award. The $5000 prize is made possible by a gift from First Presbyterian Church in Malvern, Arkansas. The church funded The Chidester Award through an endowment gift in 2010 to support Austin Seminary’s mission to prepare new pastoral leaders.
The Chidester Award is given annually to recognize a graduating student who shows greatest potential in the area of preaching. The candidate for the award is recommended by the Seminary’s homiletics (preaching) faculty: President Theodore J. Wardlaw, Professor Jennifer Lord, and Professor Carolyn Helsel.
Professor Carolyn Helsel says, “When she began seminary, Chelsea had no intention of becoming a preacher. Yet the call to preach has seeped into her skin, and it is apparent to all who hear her proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ. With creativity and clarity, Chelsea uses vivid imagery and storytelling to convey the gospel message to her listeners, so that we cannot help but feel that Good News seeping into our skin, too.”
Chelsea McCutchin, of Lakeland, Florida, will receive the Master of Divinity degree on Sunday, May 20, during Austin Seminary’s 2018 Commencement. She is seeking a call in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).