From Rev. Dr. Jody Hill, President, Memphis theological Seminary
When the pandemic began, the Hamilton Chapel in Founders Hall was under renovation. Construction was completed in the summer of 2020, but it would be almost two years before we felt comfortable opening the chapel for in-person services.
Over the past month, we’ve kicked off a new year of chapel with four wonderful, worshipful experiences led by terrific sermons, inspiring music, and meaningful prayers and liturgy. Dr. Tricia Vesely, Visiting Assistant Professor of Hebrew Bible and Christian Ethics at MTS, delivered a meaningful message on the relationship between sabbath, our work, and our ties to creation. Dr. Karren Todd, Program Director for the House of Black Church Studies at MTS, gave a comforting message of the gift of God’s peace during times of worry. Rev. Tony Coleman, Associate Pastor at First Congregational Church in Memphis, offered a thoughtful sermon asking us to consider what it would look like in our lives to forsake a few of our wants so that the earth can continue to provide for all of our needs. And Rev. Tyler Lindsey (MDiv, 2021), Pastor of Brier Creek Cumberland Presbyterian Church, shared a powerful sermon on how practicing the radical grace of God can transform our world in the image of Jesus Christ.
After years of isolation and physical distance, it has been especially good to gather together and worship in community. Spiritual discernment is an Important component of our strategic planning process, and there is no better way to engage in deep spiritual discernment than when we worship together as a community each week. I cannot say enough about the worship leadership that has been provided by Dr. Christy Woodbury-Moore, Dr. Mary Lin Hudson, and the students from our course in “Theology and Practice of Worship.” We hope each of you will make a renewed effort to be a part of this holy time each Tuesday at 11 am, so we can worship and pray together for a brighter future.