Changing Scenes

Gladstone H. Stevens, P.S.S.

Theological College, National Seminary of the Catholic University of America

The Provincial Council of the Society of St. Sulpice, Province of the United States, appointed Sulpician Father Gladstone H. “Bud” Stevens, P.S.S., S.T.L., Ph.D., as the 18th Rector of Theological College, the national seminary of The Catholic University of America. He was installed in August.

A priest of the Archdiocese of Louisville, Ky., he was ordained in 2000 and joined the Sulpicians in 2002. He is a member of the Provincial Council of the Society of St. Sulpice, Province of the United States, and is the First Consultor.

Stevens graduated from Quincy College in 1989, and earned a doctorate in theology from Marquette University in 1997. His specialization is systematic theology, and he regularly teaches courses on the priesthood and the Eucharist.

Stevens has served on the formation and academic faculties of St. Mary’s Seminary & University in Baltimore and as its academic dean, praeses (head of the Ecclesiastical Theological faculty) and vice rector. He also served on the formation and academic faculties of St. Patrick’s Seminary in Menlo Park, Calif., and as academic dean, vice rector, and rector.



Changing Scenes

Ron Kastens

Emmanuel Christian Seminary

Ron Kastens, D.Min., began his tenure as Academic Dean of Emmanuel Christian Seminary at Milligan in September. After years in the church, he returned to Milligann in 2018 to lead the Ministry Leadership Program.

Kastens graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Bible from Milligan in 1989. He went on to earn a M.Div. and a D.Min. from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary. After serving in two local churches for nearly 30 years, Kastens returned to Milligan in August 2018.

He succeeded Rollin Ramsaran who served as Emmanuel’s Dean from 2008 to 2010 and returned to that role in 2014. Ramsaran has returned to the faculty.



Changing Scenes

Yamil Acevedo

Wesley Seminary, Indiana Wesleyan University

Yamil Acevedo, Ph.D., became Wesley Seminary’s new Interim Executive Vice President in July, after previously serving the seminary as the director of Theological Programs in Spanish. Acevedo also will serve as a member of Indiana Wesleyan University’s executive cabinet.

A scholar with over 15 years of pastoral experience, (including five years as a lead pastor), Acevedo previously worked as a risk manager.

A native of Puerto Rico, he earned a Ph.D. in Intercultural Studies at Trinity International University, and joined Wesley four years ago. He previously served as intercultural advisor and Latino Ministry Director at Groundswell Movement, and as a conflict coach and mediator at Alliance Peacemaking Ministries. He currently serves on the local Board of Administration for Trinity Wesleyan Church in Indianapolis.



Changing Scenes

Rupert A. Hayles, Jr.

Roberts Wesleyan University, Northeastern Seminary

Rupert A. Hayles, Jr., Ph.D., assumed office in July as the twelfth president of Roberts Wesleyan University and fourth president of Northeastern Seminary.

With more than three decades of experience in management and Christian higher education, Hayles previously served as president of Pillar College in New Jersey.

Prior to his time in Christian higher education, Hayles served in the U.S. Air Force as an officer before transitioning to the private sector in strategic management, executive coaching and advancement counsel for more than 25 years. He also was chief operating officer of Christ Church and executive pastor of Life Christian Church, both in New Jersey.

Hayles earned a doctorate in organizational leadership from Regent University in Virginia, and an M.B.A. from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania; his Bachelor of Science in management information systems is from Seton Hall University.



Changing Scenes

Gerard McCarren

Immaculate Conception Seminary School of Theology

Monsignor Gerard McCarren was named Interim Rector/Dean of Immaculate Conception Seminary School of Theology for one year, effective July 1, 2023.

McCarren earned a B.A. from Yale University, an M.Div. from Immaculate Conception Seminary School of Theology, and an S.T.L. and an S.T.D. in Systematic Theology from The Catholic University of America. He was ordained to the priesthood in 1991.

McCarren is an associate professor of Systematic Theology on the theological faculty of the Pastoral Provision. His scholarly work is focused on John Henry Newman, and he is an emeritus board member of the Newman Association of America, where he served from 2001-2016.



Changing Scenes

Marla Frederick

Harvard Divinity School

A cultural anthropologist of the Black religious experience has been named dean of the Harvard Divinity School, effective Jan. 1, 2024.

Marla Frederick, Ph.D., who served as a professor of religion and culture at Emory University’s Candler School of Theology, succeeds David Hempton, Harvard’s dean since 2012.

Frederick will become the first woman and the first Black woman to lead the school in its 207-year history.

Frederick previously served on the Harvard faculty for 16 years as a professor in the Department of African and African American Studies. The author or co-author of four books, Frederick’s expertise has been in religion and media, religion and social activism in the U.S. South and the sustainability of Black institutions.

She recently served as president of the American Academy of Religion and has been president of the Association of Black Anthropologists.

She earned her bachelor’s degree from Spelman College and her Ph.D. in cultural anthropology from Duke University.



Changing Scenes

Jay Simmons

Saint Paul School of Theology

Saint Paul School of Theology’s Board of Trustees has announced the appointment of Jay Simmons, Ph.D., as its new president, effective Jan. 2, 2024.

Simmons has over 25 years of service as a dean, academic vice president, and president, almost all of which have been in service to Methodist-affiliated educational institutions. He most recently served as Vice President for Institutional Advancement at Saint Paul School of Theology.

A 1985 Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Birmingham-Southern College in Alabama, he began graduate study in political science at the University of Georgia before returning to Birmingham to work in the private sector and then at his alma mater, while also completing his masters and doctorate work at the University of Alabama.

He also served as Dean of Liberal Arts at Cuyahoga Community College in Cleveland, Ohio, Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean at LaGrange College in LaGrange, Ga., president of Iowa Wesleyan College, and president of Simpson College.

Simmons is a past president of the National Association of the Schools and Colleges of the United Methodist Church, the presidents’ association of United Methodist colleges and universities. During the current extended quadrennium, Simmons serves as chair of the Commission on Institutional Review, the accrediting arm for United Methodist-affiliated colleges and universities.



Changing Scenes

Mark Harden

Shaw University Divinity School

Mark Harden, Ph.D., an ordained Baptist minister with over two decades of experience in higher education, began his tenure as Dean of Shaw University Divinity School in August, succeeding Dr. Gregory M. Howard, who served since May 2022.

An accomplished practitioner-scholar who has successfully developed and taught a variety of graduate and advanced degree programs in practical ministry, Harden previously served as Executive Director of the Gospel Initiative in Littleton, Colo., and as Vice President of Academic Affairs and Dean of the College at Pillar College in Newark, N.J.

Harden completed his Ph.D. at Michigan State and his post-doctoral studies in Philosophical Theology and Ethics at Luther Seminary. He holds Master of Arts degrees from Northern Baptist Theological Seminary in Theological Studies and from Marygrove College in Pastoral Ministry, and a B.A. from Oakland University.



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