ELCA NEWS SERVICE
May 14, 2012
James Nieman elected president of Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago
CHICAGO (ELCA) - The Rev. James R. Nieman was elected May 14 to serve as the 7th president of the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago. He will begin his service Aug. 1. An installation service will be held at Rockefeller Chapel here Oct. 28. The seminary is one of eight of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA).
In presentations given during the presidential search process, Nieman said that he sees the seminary as distinctly situated in the ELCA to meet challenges facing denominational seminaries. He cited the seminary's core strengths in the vision he outlined for innovative, faithful forms of theological education befitting the church in this time.
"While our seminaries must form leaders of an ever more diverse variety," said Nieman, "the real purpose of leaders is that they encourage and support bold, creative witness by every disciple in the many places those leaders may never go. The future of theological education relies on shifting our weight onto just such a witness to the gospel, with leadership formation in service to that. The Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago impresses me as having just the right blend of character, setting, resources and purpose to model new ways of doing this in the years to come."
"Dr. Nieman brings a compelling vision for theological education as well as a depth and breadth of experience to lead (the seminary) into the future," said Sarah Stegemoeller, chair of the seminary's board.
"His extensive work in the areas of context and change within the church will help the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago form visionary leaders prepared to be even more effective in sharing the gospel within the communities they service," said Stegemoeller.
Since 2005, Nieman has been professor of practical theology at Hartford Seminary in Hartford, Conn. He was professor of homiletics at Wartburg Theological Seminary in Dubuque, Iowa, from 1992 to 2004. Wartburg is also one of the eight ELCA seminaries.
Nieman served as pastor of the Inupiaq Lutheran Church in Anchorage, Alaska, and Zion Lutheran Church in Clayton Center, Iowa. He is a consultant and facilitator for the ELCA's "Living into the Future Together: Renewing the Ecology of the ELCA" task force.
Nieman earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, Wash.; a Master of Divinity degree from Wartburg; and a doctorate from Emory University in Atlanta. Pacific Lutheran is one of 26 ELCA colleges and universities.
Nieman is published in the areas of practical theology, congregational studies and preaching. He is married to the Rev. JoAnn A. Post, pastor of Concordia Lutheran Church in Manchester, Conn. They are the parents of two daughters.
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About the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America:
The ELCA is one of the largest Christian denominations in the United States, with 4.2 million members in 10,000 congregations across the 50 states and in the Caribbean region. Known as the church of "God's work. Our hands," the ELCA emphasizes the saving grace of God through faith in Jesus Christ, unity among Christians and service in the world. The ELCA's roots are in the writings of the German church reformer, Martin Luther.
*Jan Boden is director for communication and marketing at the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago.
For information contact:
Melissa Ramirez Cooper
773-380-2956 or Melissa.RamirezCooper@ELCA.org
Living Lutheran: http://www.livinglutheran.com