News

March 1, 2019

LAMPa Welcomes the Rev. Dr. Gilson Waldkoenig to Policy Council

The Rev. Dr. Gilson Waldkoenig was recently appointed to the LAMPa Policy Council by interim United Lutheran Seminary President Dr. Richard Green. Gil will represent the seminary community.

Gilson Waldkoenig is the Paulssen-Hale-Maurer Professor of Church in Society at United Lutheran Seminary. Since 1995 he has taught courses on the church’s engagement in society, including his specializations in rural and environmental ministries.

Gil earned a PhD in the history of Christianity at the University of Chicago Divinity School. His publications include a book on cooperative parishes, and one on rural churches facing dramatic social, environmental and economic change. Gil’s students from over the years are pastors, deacons and lay leaders across Pennsylvania and elsewhere.

Gil remarked: “To join LAMPA Policy Council as the seminary liaison is a privilege and joy.” He added that he thinks of public advocacy through a practical theology of “means of grace and scenes of grace.” The means of grace from Christ Jesus—baptism, holy communion and proclaimed word—not only carry spiritual benefits of forgiveness, repentance and reassurance from God but also enact “scenes of grace,” Gil noted, that show reconciliation, healing and wholeness.

Glimpses of similar scenes emerge in God’s creation where the resurrected Christ is active in creative and surprising ways. “We can even get involved in scenes of grace in the world,” Gil says. “We can set tables of grace with our hungry neighbors and help to make spaces of grace that foster healing and reconciliation in our wounded and hurting world,” he said. Public advocacy ministry stands up for scenes of grace in a needy world, Gil believes, and therefore reflects grace in Christ Jesus while helping neighbors too.

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