August 2015
13th Annual Summer Preaching Retreat: Aug. 11 –13

"The Poetry of the Parables: Preaching as Improvisation"

The 13th Annual Summer Preaching Seminar, “The Poetry of the Parables: Preaching as Improvisation,” is scheduled for Aug. 11–13 on United's campus. This three-day event is sponsored by the Center for Worship, Preaching and the Arts. Guest speaker Rev. Dr. Eugene L. Lowry will discuss how to use the structure of the parables to create lively and interesting sermons.

Rev. Dr. Lowry is an ordained minister, author and an accomplished blues/jazz pianist. He will present a piano concert, free to the United community, on Aug. 12 at 7 p.m.

Register here  by Friday, Aug. 7. Contact or 937.529.2201 for details.

August Intensive Week Focuses on Evangelism

The Doctoral Intensive scheduled for Aug. 17–21, will focus on the topic of evangelism. Featured speakers include Dr. Vashti McKenzie and Dr. Randy Clark. The public is invited to attend worship and chapel services and all plenaries.

Scott Kisker
2015–2016 Academic Year Convocation: Sept. 14

United Theological Seminary will kick off its 145th academic year at 9 a.m. on Sept. 14, at its 2015 Opening Convocation, to be held at Christ United Methodist Church, 3440 Shroyer Rd., Kettering, OH 45429. Dr. Scott Kisker, Professor of the History of Christianity, is this year's speaker.

Dr. Kisker, who joined United’s faculty in 2013, earned a B.A. from Swarthmore College, an M. Div. from The Divinity School at Duke University and a Ph.D. from Drew University. His teaching and research interests include Wesley studies and pietist studies, and he is currently researching cultural transitions in 19th century Methodism. He is an elder in the Iowa Annual Conference and has served as a pastor at Colesburg United Methodist Church. Prior to coming to United, he was Professor of the History of Christianity at Wesley Theological Seminary and was director of the Course of Study program. He is also the author of several books.

Opening Convocation is free and open to the public.
Lonnie C. Porter Scholarship Dinner: Sept. 15

Please join us on Sept. 15 at the Schuster Center as we celebrate those who have made significant and sacrificial gifts to provide scholarships for students who are preparing to be servant leaders in the church.

The keynote speaker for the evening is James Hunter. Hunter is the author of two internationally best-selling books:  The Servant: A Simple Story About the True Essence of Leadership and  The World’s Most Powerful Leadership Principle: How to Become a Servant Leader.

The evening honors  Mr. Lonnie C. Porter, a humble and devoted groundskeeper who served United for many years and left his entire estate to support United students. 

Register here by Aug. 28. Contact:  Mandy Wood or 937.529.2201.
J. Arthur Heck Lectures and Light the Fire! 2015: Oct. 15–16

"Come to the Table: Renewing Faith and Fellowship through Food"

The 2015 J. Arthur Heck Lectures has been combined with the 6th Annual Church Renewal Conference, Light the Fire! 2015. The event will take place Oct. 15–16 at Ginghamsburg Church in Tipp City, Ohio. This year’s theme, “Come to the Table: Renewing Faith and Fellowship through Food,” features a dynamic group of speakers including Fred Bahnson, Joel Salatin and this year’s Heck Lecturer, Norman Wirzba (pictured).

United’s annual Alumni/ae Awards Banquet and Decades Reunion Luncheon are scheduled the day before, Oct. 14, at United’s Dayton Campus. Dr. Wirzba will also speak during the Banquet. 

Visit to register.

4th Annual Holy Spirit Seminar: Dec. 4

"Prayer  — Touching Heaven, Changing Earth"

United’s 4th Annual Holy Spirit Seminar is taking place Dec. 4 at Ginghamsburg Church, Tipp City, Ohio. During this year’s seminar on the theme “Prayer — Touching Heaven, Changing Earth” noted authors and speakers Dr. James W. Goll and Dr. Mark Virkler will focus on prayer and intercession.

Justus Hunter
New Faces at United 

Justus Hunter, Assistant Professor of Church History

United is pleased to welcome new faculty member Justus H. Hunter, who began his teaching duties on July 1, 2015. He is currently a Ph.D. candidate at Southern Methodist University and anticipates completing his doctoral studies this summer.

Hunter teaches church history and theology. His research and teaching interests include medieval theology, scholasticism, doctrine of God and Christology. His work has appeared in the journals  Ecclesiology and  Wesleyan Theological Journal, as well as the  T&T Clark Companion to Reformation Theology (Bloomsbury, 2012) and  The Encyclopedia of Christianity in the United States (Rowman & Littlefield, forthcoming). He is a lay member of The United Methodist Church.
New Staff Members

United welcomes new staff members: Courtney Ward as Assistant Registrar, Callie Picardo as Senior Director of Development Operations , Kayla Fallen as Graphic and Web Designer and Rachel Hurley as Communications Associate.
Check Out Our New Look!

You may have noticed that United Update eNews has a new look. The  new design is mobile-friendly, making it easier to read on mobile devices of all types, as well as laptop and desktop computers.