Vatican visitation director appointed to Baltimore archdiocese


The Most Rev. Edwin F. O'Brien, who coordinated the Vatican's visitation of all U.S. Catholic seminaries and houses of formation in 2005 and 2006, has been appointed archbishop of Baltimore. He replaces Cardinal William H. Keeler, 75, who retired after 18 years as head of the archdiocese.

Archbishop O'Brien, 68, was ordained a priest in 1965 and was later an Army chaplain in Vietnam. In 1973, he left the military to begin doctoral studies at Angelicum University in Rome. He was twice the rector of St. Joseph's Seminary, Dunwoodie, the seminary of the archdiocese of New York in Yonkers. In 1996 he was ordained auxiliary bishop of New York, and the following year he was appointed archbishop for the military services, with responsibility for chaplains in all branches of the U.S. armed forces.

Archbishop O'Brien serves as chairman of the board of trustees of the Pontifical North American College and as a member of the board of St. Joseph's Seminary, Dunwoodie.

University business officers and IRS discuss Form 990 changes

In July, a delegation from the National Association of College and University Business Officers met with Internal Revenue Service staff to discuss proposed changes to Form 990, the "Return of Organization Exempt From Income Tax," which many U.S. colleges, universities, and seminaries file each year to report on their mission and finances.

The NACUBO delegation expressed concern over the length and complexity of the proposed form, which some delegates said would require their institutions to hire a new full-time employee just to file the related paperwork. The proposed elimination of group reporting, which allows one return for an organization and all of its subsidiary organizations, is of particular concern for seminaries that are currently exempt from filing because they are part of larger entities.

Seminary mergers and name changes

Evangelical School of Theology in Myerstown, Pennsylvania, has become Evangelical Theological Seminary. The school remains affiliated with the Evangelical Congregational Church.

Nazarene University College (formerly Canadian Nazarene College) and Alliance University College(formerly Canadian Bible College/Canadian Theological Seminary), both in Calgary, Alberta, have merged under the name Ambrose University College. The new school is affiliated with both the Church of the Nazarene and the Christian and Missionary Alliance.

North American Baptist Seminary in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, has become Sioux Falls Seminary. The school remains affiliated with the North American Baptist Conference.

Changes at the top


■ The Rev. Harry G. Gardner has been appointed president of Acadia Divinity College in Wolfville, Nova Scotia, effective January 1, 2008. He replaces the Rev. Lee M. McDonald, who has retired after eight years as principal and president of the school, which is affiliated with the Convention of Atlantic Baptist Churches. Dr. Robert Wilson, professor of church history, is serving as interim president from July 1 to December 31.

Since 1996, Dr. Gardner has served as executive minister of the Convocation of Atlantic Baptist Churches. Previously he was director of home missions and church planting for the convocation. Dr. Gardner is a graduate of Dalhousie University, Acadia Divinity College, and Fuller Theological Seminary. He and his wife, Gail, have two adult children.


■ Dr. Ruthann Knechel Johansen has been named president of Bethany Theological Seminary in Richmond, Indiana, replacing retiring president Dr. Eugene Roop. A member of the Bethany's board of trustees from 1985 to 1995, Dr. Johansen was most recently professor of liberal studies and a fellow of the Joan B. Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies at the University of Notre Dame.

Dr. Johansen is a graduate of Manchester College, Columbia University Teachers College, and Drew University. She is a lay member of the Church of the Brethren, which operates the seminary, and is moderator-elect of the Northern Indiana District of the church.


■ The Rev. Barry H. Corey has been appointed eighth president of Biola University in La Mirada, California, replacing Dr. Clyde Cook, who has retired after 25 years as head of the evangelical, nondenominational university. Biola includes the Talbot School of Theology.

A graduate of Evangel University and Boston College, Dr. Corey was most recently vice president, chief academic officer, and academic dean of Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in South Hamilton, Massachusetts. Earlier he served as the school's chief development officer, and between 1993 and 2000, he was also pastor of the Greek Evangelical Church of Boston.

Dr. Corey is an ordained Assemblies of God minister. He and his wife, Paula, have three children.


■ The National Leadership Board of the Canadian Convention of Southern Baptists has elected the Rev. Robert Blackaby as president of Canadian Southern Baptist Seminary and College in Cochrane, Alberta. He took office in April, replacing the interim president, Dr. Steve Booth, who will continue in his role as academic dean. His predecessor, the Rev. Richard Blackaby, served as president of the seminary for 13 years before departing to become head of an Atlanta-based evangelism organization. The two Blackabys are cousins.

Dr. Robert Blackaby was formerly pastor of Trinity Baptist Church in Calgary and had served as an adjunct professor at the seminary, teaching ethics. He was president of the Canadian Convention of Southern Baptists from 2003 to 2006.

A graduate of the University of British Columbia and Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, he is married to Jo Susan Blackaby, and they have three small children.


■ Dr. William H. Jones, senior vice president and provost of Columbia International University, has been named the new president of the evangelical, nondenominational school in Columbia, South Carolina. He replaces Dr. George Murray, who was named chancellor of the university and board chairman of a newly incorporated fundraising organization, the CIU Educational Foundation.Keith Marion, senior vice president for development and operations at the school, will be executive director of the new foundation.

Dr. Jones has been at Columbia International University since 1990, when he began teaching evangelism and missions in the seminary. He is a graduate of the Georgia Institute of Technology, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, and Columbia International University. He is also a co-founder of Crossover Communications International, a missions agency with headquarters near the university. 


■ The Rev. Haddon W. Robinson has been appointed interim president of Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary following the resignation of the Rev. James Emery White. Dr. White will continue to lead the Mecklenburg Community Church in Charlotte, North Carolina, and teach at the nondenominational, evangelical seminary's campus in Charlotte. After serving as president for less than one year, he announced his resignation from the presidency by explaining that family considerations precluded him from relocating to the main campus in South Hamilton, Massachusetts.

Dr. Robinson is professor of preaching and senior director of the doctor of ministry program at Gordon-Conwell. Before moving to Gordon-Conwell in 1991, he had taught homiletics at Dallas Theological Seminary for 19 years and then served as president of Denver Seminary for 12 years. He is a graduate of Dallas Seminary, Southern Methodist University, and the University of Illinois.


■  The Rev. Alton B. Pollard III has been named dean of the Howard University School of Divinity, replacing interim dean Dr. Bertram Melbourne. The school has been without a permanent dean since 2003, when Dr. Clarence G. Newsome departed to become president of Shaw University. In November 2006, divinity students staged a protest, calling for a permanent dean, and the university provost responded with a pledge to step up the search process.

Dr. Pollard was previously associate professor of religion and culture at the Candler School of Theology at Emory University. From 1988 to 1998, he was a member of the department of religion at Wake Forest University.

An ordained Baptist, Dr. Pollard has served as pastor of several churches and was until this year the associate minister of Trinity Tabernacle Baptist Church in Mableton, Georgia. He is a graduate of Fisk University, Harvard Divinity School, and Duke University. 


■ The United States Province of the Society of St. Sulpice has selected Father Thomas R. Hurst as the next president-rector of St. Mary's Seminary & University — the Baltimore seminary's 15th Sulpician head since its founding in 1791. He replaces Father Robert Leavitt, who is departing after 27 years as president-rector of St. Mary's. After a sabbatical, Father Leavitt plans to return to teaching.

Since 2001 Father Hurst has been rector of Theological College, the national seminary of the Catholic University of America. Before that, he was regional superior of the Sulpicians in Zambia and academic dean of St. Dominic's Seminary in Lusaka, Zambia. He served on the faculty of St. Mary's from 1980 to 1992.

A graduate of the Catholic University of America, Father Hurst was ordained a priest for the diocese of Albany, New York, in 1973. Since 1975 he has been a member of the Society of St. Sulpice, a community of diocesan priests whose ministry focuses on theological education for future priests.


  ■ The Rev. Alan L. Hayes has been appointed seventh director of the Toronto School of Theology. He replaces Dr. Christopher J. L. Lind, who in 2006 was appointed a senior fellow at Massey College at the University of Toronto.

Dr. Hayes is a graduate of Pomona College and McGill University. Since 1975 he has taught at Wycliffe College, and in 1989 he was named to the Bishops Heber and Frederick Wilkinson chair in church history.

The Toronto School of Theology comprises seven member theological colleges, including Wycliffe College, and three affiliated schools. The member and affiliated schools include Anglican, Catholic, Christian Reformed, Lutheran, Mennonite, Presbyterian, and United Church of Canada institutions.

An ordained priest in the Anglican Church of Canada, Dr. Hayes is married to the Rev. Morar Murray-Hayes, a United Church pastor. They have two adult daughters. 


■ The Rev. Jeffrey Silliman has been appointed the new president of Salt Lake Theological Seminary, replacing the Rev. Donald McCullough, who departed in December after serving as president since 2004. The nondenominational, evangelical school has faced persistent financial challenges and sold its building earlier this year to a financial supporter, who is renting part of it back to the seminary.

An ordained minister in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), Dr. Silliman has most recently been executive presbyter of the presbytery of Riverside, California. Before that, he was for 26 years the pastor of Mount Olympus Presbyterian Church in Salt Lake City. A graduate of the University of Utah, Fuller Theological Seminary, and Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, he was formerly chairman of the board of Salt Lake Seminary.


■ Dr. Ian Markham has been named 14th dean and president of Virginia Theological Seminary, replacing the Rev. Martha J. Horne, who has retired after 12 years at the head of the largest seminary of the Episcopal Church. The school, which is located in the Washington suburb of Alexandria, is formally known as the Protestant Episcopal Theological Seminary in Virginia.

Since 2001, Dr. Markham has been dean of Hartford Seminary and professor of theology and ethics there. Previously he taught and served on the senior management team at Liverpool Hope University in Liverpool, England.

A graduate of the universities of London, Cambridge, and Exeter, Dr. Markham was ordained as a deacon in June and is a candidate for priestly ordination in the Episcopal diocese of Connecticut. He and his wife, Lesley, have one son.

Brian K. Blount (UNION-PSCE)

■  The Rev. Brian K. Blount has been named president of Union Theological Seminary & Presbyterian School of Christian Education, replacing the Rev. Louis B. Weeks, who retired this summer. In 1997, Dr. Weeks presided over the legal federation of the two schools, both in Richmond, Virginia.

A graduate of the College of William and Mary, Princeton Seminary, and Emory University, Dr. Blount was a Baptist until he was called as pastor of Carver Memorial Presbyterian Church in Newport News, Virginia, in 1982. For the past 15 years he has served on the faculty of Princeton Theological Seminary.

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