Who’s in your family? My wife is Julie, and we have a son, Sawyer.
Where’d you move from? Madison, Wis. I was working on a Ph.D. in Old Testament studies at The University of Wisconsin.
When did you get ordained? Jan. 17. I was ordained through the John Knox Presbytery in Wisconsin.
Where’d you grow up? In Pueblo. I got my undergraduate degree from the University of Colorado, in Boulder, and then I went to Princeton Seminary. I worked as an intern in college ministry for a year before seminary.
When did you graduate from Princeton? I got my Master of Divinity in 2002, and also a Master of Theology in 2004. In my Ph.D. program, I also got a Master of Arts. I’m what they call “A.B.D.” — all but dissertation.
How long will that take? I hope to have my dissertation finished in 2-5 years.
Have you thought of teaching with the Ph.D.? Not primarily, I’ve always liked to be involved in ministry. The reason I started the Ph.D. program was to discover more ways to use the Old Testament in the ministry of the church. The narratives of the Old Testament — of David and Moses — are wonderful resources for ministry. My first semester at Princeton, I took Introduction to Old Testament and Hebrew; and I was hooked.
You met your wife at Princeton. Yes, and in Madison she was director of Christian Formation at our church — Christ Presbyterian.
How did you get this job? I went looking for ordained positions working with college students. At that age, there’s a lot of energy and enthusiasm and questioning and trying to discover their identity. The Presbyterian Church (PCUSA) lists various opportunities and I came across this one. It sounded like it had a lot of great resources, and people who are passionate about the ministry.
What does the Abbey offer? We have a lunch program on Tuesdays for students. It’s for students of all faiths, or no faith. There’s also a Wednesday night dinner at First Presbyterian. We also have a Bible study on Sunday nights. … There’s an Abbey Council, which functions as a board. It has people from all the Presbyterian churches.
Where does your passion come from for this ministry? As an undergrad, I was involved in campus ministry, through all the different programs — ski events and Bible studies. My parents were volunteers in the youth program at our church for 20 years. The age is exciting to me. The students are open to new ideas. I like to celebrate that time with them.