April 27 - May 2

Spring Academy 2015.


“Home and Away: Ministry with Those Coming Home and Ministry as the Global Church” April 27-May 2


Downloadable resources


Gettysburg Seminary expanded its traditional Spring Convocation into a weeklong feast of lectures, presentations and workshops, with worship, culturally and spiritually enriching activities for students, lay learners, alumni/ae, prospective seminarians and more. Take advantage of this opportunity to be in conversation with scholars, seekers, lifelong learners and seminarians for audit, course credit, and/or personal enrichment. Questions may be directed to tel. 717-338-3000 ext 2198 or Academy@LTSG.EDU

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Monday, April 27 Spring Academy has been scheduled to connect with “Day at the Capitol” of Lutheran Advocacy Ministries in PA. For details, and to register, visit LAMPa


Advance reservations are now closed but we welcome you to register for the lectures in person on the day of the event. Meal reservations are no longer available.  

LTSG students: register here.


For the brochure click here (2-page pdf).

Spring Academy 2015 schedule


Martin Luther King, Jr. Lecture:

John E. Wetzel is Secretary of Pennsylvania Department of Corrections. Secretary Wetzel is widely recognized as one of the thought leaders in corrections today. His expertise includes staffing, vulnerability assessment, mentally ill offenders, developing employment opportunities for formerly incarcerated offenders, population management, mitigating the impact on the families/children of incarcerated individuals and effecting system change. His career began in Lebanon County as a corrections officer in 1989. He then served in Berks County as a Correctional Officer, Counselor, Treatment Supervisor and finally Director of the Training Academy. In January of 2002, he began his 9-year tenure as Warden of the Franklin County Jail. Under his leadership, Franklin County saw a 20% reduction in their population while the crime rate declined. Franklin County was at the forefront of maximizing their correctional continuum to reduce reliance on incarceration while focusing on improving outcomes for offenders. Specifically they developed a Day Reporting Center, established a Jail Industries Program and initiated programs targeting improved services for mentally ill offenders, including a Certified Peer Specialist program. He was appointed to the PA Board of Pardons, by then Governor Edward Rendell (D). In December of 2010, he was selected as the 11th Secretary of Corrections for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania by Governor-elect Corbett. His tenure there saw an elimination of a 24-year average growth of 1500 inmates per year, presiding over the first population reduction in Pennsylvania in over 4 decades. Additionally, he oversaw the restructuring of the Community Corrections system, the mental health system and a re-engineering of internal processes. In January of 2015, Governor Tom Wolf asked Wetzel to continue as the Secretary of Corrections. Wetzel is a member of Harvard’s Executive Session on Community Corrections which is a joint project of Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government and the National Institute of Justice (NIJ). Consisting of 30 of the leading policymakers, practitioners and researchers from across the country, the intent is to shape the meaning and future of community corrections policy in the United States. He has been selected as the Vice Chair of the Council of State Government Justice Center Executive Board and is a member of the Colston Task Force on federal prison overcrowding. Wetzel is the former offensive line coach for Shippensburg University and a founding member of the St. Seraphim homeless shelter.


The Rev. Dr. Daniel M. Bell, Jr. is Professor of Theology and Ethics at Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary in Columbia, South Carolina. He is an ordained Elder in The United Methodist Church. A graduate of Stetson University, his M.Div. is from Duke Divinity School. His Ph.D. (in theology and ethics) is from Duke University. Books include Liberation Theology After the End of History, Just War as Christian Discipleship, and The Economy of Desire: Christianity and Capitalism in a Postmodern World. Articles have appeared in journals such as Christianity Today, The Christian Century, Modern Theology, Journal for Peace and Justice Studies and Studies in Christians Ethics. Bell speaks on topics such as war and peace, the moral life, stewardship, and mission of the church today. He has presented papers before distinguished organizations such as the Latin American Studies Association International Congress, the American Academy of Religion, the Society of Christian Ethics, and the Irish School of Ecumenics. A gifted scholar and an enthusiastic teacher, Dr. Bell is active in Habitat for Humanity and prison ministry, has led study seminars to Mexico, and regularly takes students on cross cultural immersion trips to Honduras and Haiti. He has worked for years with active duty military chaplains in their advance civilian education program and he currently serves as the General Hugh Shelton Chair of Ethics at the U.S. Army’s Command and General Staff College, Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas. 


Rev. Dr. Richard Carlson is Glatfelter Professor of Biblical Studies, Director of Internship, and Coordinator of Post-Internship Candidacy at Gettysburg Seminary. Carlson's goal in the classroom and in his own research involves bringing the message of scripture to people's lives in ways which are both revelatory and relevant. For him the twin questions for New Testament study are: 1) What did this portion of Scripture mean in its original context? 2) What does this portion of Scripture mean in the context of the church's mission and in our lives today? Dr. Carlson served rural and staff ministries in Minnesota before coming to Gettysburg in 1990 and has found those experiences have greatly enhanced his goals and focus as a seminary professor. He still enjoys teaching in congregations, conferences, and synods in the area. In addition to teaching responsibilities, he serves as chairperson of the Seminary's Field Education committee and oversees post-internship candidacy items. His B.A. is from Concordia College, his M.Div. is from Wartburg Theological Seminary, his Ph.D. is from Union Theological Seminary in Virginia.


The Rev. Dr. Robert Robinson is Anna Burkhalter Professor, Old Testament and Hebrew, The Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia. His B.A. is from Ursinus College, his M.Div. is from Yale Divinity School, his Ph.D. is from Yale University. Robinson’s interest lies in the theory and practice of interpretation and particularly in the application of current literary techniques to the interpretation of the Bible. Behind that interest is a desire to see the Bible read with understanding and confidence by all Christians. Approaching the Bible as a consummately profound literary work allows the sort of disciplined observation and probing discussion that leads to deeper understanding of the Word of God for our lives. He has written a commentary on the Book of Genesis. The commentary uses such familiar literary terms as character, plot, theme and allusion to knit together a holistic picture of the book. At the same time he is attempting to return to the history of interpretation of Genesis to learn from earlier readers, many of them sublimely brilliant, what they saw as most important in each passage and how that message spoke to the life of their community of faith.


Preaching Perspectives Presenters:

The Rev. Dr. Martin Otto Zimmann holds a Ph.D. in American Culture Studies from Bowling Green State University in Ohio. He is a 1998 graduate of Gettysburg Seminary. Martin helped shape the synodical partnership between the Southeast Michigan Synod and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in the Holy Land and Jordan and has helped to organize ELCA delegations to Jerusalem and the West Bank. He has also worked with advocacy groups to visit congressional offices on Capitol Hill. He has taught at Siena Heights University in Adrian Michigan and Bowling Green State University in Bowling Green, Ohio on a variety of topics, including Ethnic Studies, Literature and Composition, Climate Change and Sustainability, and Apocalypse Theology. Beginning in February of 2013, he served the English Congregation of the Lutheran Church of the Redeemer in Jerusalem and was assistant to LWF President, Bishop Munib Younan for 1.5 years. He currently serves on the advisory board of the Interfaith Sustainability Center in the Middle East. He now lives in Gettysburg with his wife, Angela, and children Seth and Chelsea, serving at Trinity Lutheran Church in Mechanicsburg, PA.


The Rev. Dr. Angela Zimmann is Visiting Professor of Preaching and Advancement and Communication Executive at Gettysburg Seminary. She also assists the dean and faculty in a new, Lilly endowment-funded "Abundant Life" project, designing innovative curricular approaches to make theological education at Gettysburg more accessible and affordable. Most recently, Zimmann served in Jerusalem, Israel/Palestine as Pastor and Special Assistant to Bishop Dr. Munib Younan, President of the Lutheran World Federation. She has also served as a leader of the English congregation at Church of the Redeemer in Jerusalem. She has also served as pastor of Trinity Lutheran Church, Riga, MI, ran for congress in the 5th District of Ohio, and worked part time for Bowling Green University. Her B.S. in Industrial Engineering is from University of Toledo. Her M.Div. is from Gettysburg Seminary. Her Ph.D. in Rhetoric and Composition is from Bowling Green State University. 


Visit the ELCA Glocal webpage.

Glocal Keynote Presenters:

The Rev. Dr. Barbara R. Rossing will present the Saturday, May 2 Plenary: Landing Accompaniment: Just Peace. She is professor of New Testament at the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, where she has taught since 1994. She loves to teach and preach about the Bible, including the Bible’s role in public life. An avid environmentalist, Rossing is involved with environmental initiatives at the seminary. Rossing received a B.A. from Carleton College, an M.Div. from Yale University Divinity School and a Th.D. from Harvard University. Her media appearances have included “CBS Sixty Minutes” as well as The History Channel, National Geographic, Living the Questions, and numerous print and radio interviews. Publications include The Rapture Exposed: The Message of Hope in the Book of Revelation (Basic Books, 2004); The Choice Between Two Cities: Whore, Bride and Empire in the Apocalypse; two volumes of the New Proclamation commentary and a nine-session Bible study, Journeys Through Revelation: Apocalyptic Hope for Today.

Dr. Charles Amjad-Ali will present the Friday, May 1 Plenary: Accompaniment - A lens and methodology for dialogue. He is the Martin Luther King, Jr., Professor of Justice and Christian Community and Director of Islamic Studies (Emeritus) at Luther Seminary, St. Paul, Minnesota. He was the inaugural professor of the rotating Desmond Tutu Chair of Ecumenical Theology and Social Transformation in Africa at the University of Western Cape, South Africa, from June to August of 2013. Amjad-Ali is now working on urban research, particularly with the program entitled Revitalizing Urban Ministry, attached with the Center for the Study and Practice of Urban Religion (C-SPUR) at New York Theological Seminary. He is one of the founding members of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan; the Pakistan Institute for Labor Education and Research (PILER); as well as the founding Chair for Strategies for Alternative Development and Action (SADA); and the Center for Legal Aid and Assistance (CLAAS). He has served as an advisor and speechwriter to Ms. Benazir Bhutto when she was the prime minister of Pakistan.

Ali Amr is a singer and Qanun performer. Growing up in a talented family of musicians meant that different forms and textures of music always surrounded the young prodigy and exposed him to a wealth of music as a child, all of which influenced his creative development. In August 2013, Ali introduced the Qanun in its own debut at the Newport Jazz Festival. “Unrivaled unique artist” were the words of Quincy Jones when he invited Ali to the Festival de Peralada (Spain) as part of the Global All~Stars Group while filming a documentary with producer Javier Limon made to showcase cultural music around the globe. Ali has collaborated with Concha Buika and Alejandro Sanz for "Generación Perdida", a benefit for the work of Doctors Without Borders to combat poverty in Africa as well as performing for the royal family of Jordan, and the President of Palestine at the White House. Click here for more on Ali Amr.



Email: Academy@Ltsg.edu

Telephone: 1-800-MLUTHER  x. 2198
or 717-338-3000  x. 2198