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Recipients selected for Excellence in Theological Education Awards


Darrell Guder, Lib Caldwell will be honored during General Assembly

December 30, 2019

Rev. Dr. Darrell Guder and Rev. Dr. Lib Caldwell have been selected to receive the Award of Excellence in Theological Excellence. They’ll be honored during next year’s General Assembly.

Two outstanding leaders in theological education will be honored at the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) 224th General Assembly in Baltimore in June 2020.

The Committee on Theological Education and the Theological Education Fund will honor the Revs. Drs. Darrell Guder and Elizabeth (Lib) Caldwell with the Award for Excellence in Theological Education during a breakfast event at General Assembly. A date for the Theological Education breakfast has not yet been set. The 224th General Assembly is set for June 20–27, 2020.

In addition to both COTE and the Theological Education Fund jointly honoring Guder and Caldwell, they will ask the 224th General Assembly to do so.

“I am so thrilled over the selection of professors Darrell Guder and Lib Caldwell as the latest recipients of the Award of Excellence in Theological Education,” said the Rev. Dr. Ted Wardlaw, president of Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary. “They both represent high-water marks with regard to lifetime commitment to their seminary settings and the cultivation of students, graduates, scholars, and church leaders too numerous to name or count. They deserve this award, and they inspire us!”

The Rev. Dr. Darrell L. Guder is the Henry Winters Luce Professor of Missional and Ecumenical Theology Emeritus and one of the founders of the Center for Church Planting and Revitalization at Princeton Theological Seminary. The Rev. Dr. Elizabeth (Lib) Caldwell is a visiting professor at Vanderbilt University Divinity School. For 30 years, she served as the Harold Blake Walker Professor of Pastoral Theology and Associate Dean of Students and Academics at McCormick Theological Seminary.

The Rev. Dr. Lee Hinson-Hasty, senior director of funds development for the Theological Education Fund at the Presbyterian Foundation, noted that the award is the highest honor in the PC(USA) for those who teach, lead and support theological education. “In the life of the Presbyterian Church, only 16 other leaders have received this honor,” Hinson-Hasty said. “This award is reserved for those who have made significant and transformational contributions to the mission and life of the Church through their service in theological education. Both Darrell and Lib have mentored generations of ministerial leaders across the Church and world while raising the bar for scholarship and research at theological institutions and broadened the impact that seminaries have on the world around them. We are all grateful for their contributions.”

Previous Recipients of the Excellence in Theological Education Award are:

1997        Robert Wood Lynn
1998        C. Ellis Nelson
1999        James H. Costen
2002       Sara P. Little
2003       Jack Leven Stotts
2004       Henry Luce III
2006       Catherine Gonzalez
2008       Sara C. Juengst
2010        Barbara Wheeler
2012        John Trotti
2014        Cynthia M. Campbell and Jack B. Rogers
2016        Katherine Sakenfeld and Craig Dykstra
2018        Katie Cannon and Doug Oldenburg

Robyn Davis Sekula, Vice President, Communications and Marketing, Presbyterian Foundation

Today’s Focus:  Excellence in Theological Education Award Recipients

Let us join in prayer for: 

PC(USA) Agencies’ Staff
Beth Olker, Presbyterian Mission Agency
Laura Olliges, Presbyterian Investment & Loan Program

Let us pray:

Loving God, we pray for those who hunger and thirst for the gospel, for those who teach, for those who learn and for all who are called to your service. Amen.

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