Letter from the President of the ASA Board
Greetings on behalf of the ASA! I hope this update finds you blessed by the grace and love of Jesus Christ and in the middle of a summer filled with life-changing vacation bible schools, inspiring book clubs, uplifting sermon series, or at the very least relaxing vacations. I am writing you today with a number of updates, news from recent events at Austin Seminary, and prayer requests.
On Sunday, May 20, Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary conferred degrees on thirty-eight masters and doctoral candidates at University Presbyterian Church in Austin. Board of Trustee Chair Cassandra Carr presided over the ceremony, and Rev. Blair Monie, pastor at Preston Hollow Presbyterian Church in Dallas, delivered the commencement address. Four candidates received the Master of Arts (Theological Studies) degree; twenty-three, the Master of Divinity; and eleven received the Doctor of Ministry. The graduating class reflected well the diversity of the Kingdom of God representing fourteen states, two countries, and nine denominations. I am proud to welcome the newest members of the ASA. Commencement photos may be found in the Austin Seminary Media Gallery at austinseminary.edu/mediagallery.
Prior to the graduation festivities, senior students were invited to an event entitled Standing on the Threshold: Looking Forward Looking Back at the Travaasa Austin Resort and Spa for a morning of activities and worship, serving as a transitional space from seminary into postgraduate and pastoral life. The time was led by Jackie Saxon, Vice President for Student Affairs and Vocation, Melissa Wiginton, Vice President for Education Beyond the Walls, Lisa Holleran, Senior Director of Development and Institutional Advancement, and recent graduates and ASA members John Leedy and Rosie Grattan. I was also thrilled to participate in this event as the students reflected on their call to seminary, their greatest memories and lessons from seminary, and began to look forward to life beyond the walls of Austin Seminary. The event concluded with a meaningful worship service at a small chapel onsite to mark the threshold being crossed by the graduating seniors. Photos from the Threshold event may also be found on the media gallery at austinseminary.edu/mediagallery.
While on campus for the Standing on the Threshold event and graduation, I participated in the spring Board of Trustees meeting as the President of the Austin Seminary Association. The Board of Trustees is comprised of pastors and laypeople from across Austin, Texas, and the United States who care deeply about theological education and Austin Seminary in particular. Through worship, shared meals, work on committees and plenary meetings, I found the Board members to be passionate, thoughtful, generous and prayerful individuals with a heart for the mission of Austin Seminary. I applaud the Board’s faithful work to Austin Seminary. They were also exceedingly willing to hear the thoughts, suggestions, and concerns of the over nineteen hundred members of the ASA that I was there to represent. A complete list of Board of Trustees members along with information about each can be found at austinseminary.edu/board.
Finally, I would like to welcome the Rev. Lemuel Garcia-Arroyo as the new Director for Alumni and Church Relations for Austin Seminary. I am sure he will bring fresh insight and energy to the position. I look forward to working with him. Please keep Lemuel in your prayers as he begins his work, for the latest graduates of Austin Seminary as they seek calls and make transitions, for the new rising Seniors as they prepare this summer for ordination exams, and for all the members of the ASA across the country and globe.
If you have any questions or comments, please contact me (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Lemuel Garcia-Arroyo (email@example.com). I look forward to hearing from you.
Rev. Timothy Blodgett
Austin Seminary Association President