General Convention 2018
Once again, the University of the South was present in a big way at the General Convention of The Episcopal Church in Austin, July 5–13, 2018. This year’s theme was “Sewanee—Who Knew!” and highlighted many of Sewanee’s unique characteristics, historical facts, and whimsical lore unknown to many. All those associated with the University participated and spread the word by wearing pins that read, “I Knew!” On it, they wrote their affiliation and date—parents of undergraduates, P’XX; college graduates, C’XX; School of Theology graduates, T’XX; EfM participants, E’XX; etc. There were a lot of purple pins on the convention floor!
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Reception and Book Signing
Among the many events held, the University hosted a book signing at the J. W. Marriott on July 7. This reception showcased all of the recent publications by several members of our faculty and staff including the Rev. Dr. William Brosend, Preaching Truth in an Age of Alternative Facts (Abingdon Press); the Rev. Dr. Julia Gatta, Life in Christ: Practicing Christian Spirituality (Church Publishing Inc.) and Mary Parmer, Invite Welcome Connect (Foreward Movement).
A reception and dinner was held at Cooper’s Old Time Pit Bar-B-Que on July 10. Over 200 alumni and friends of the University gathered for food and fellowship in classic Texas style. Without a doubt, the University of the South was well represented at the 79th Convention of The Episcopal Church!
Bishop Neil Alexander, dean of the School of Theology, shared the many ways in which the School is playing a critical role in the future of the Church through evangelism, care of creation, and racial reconciliation—all relevant to broader goals of the church as many of us witnessed in discussions at the convention.
Vice-Chancellor John McCardell strongly claimed Sewanee’s identity as an Episcopal University and told us how the University is living out that identity through innovative Beecken Center programming and revitalized leadership; a seminary that is energetically preparing new priests and enhancing the careers of those who have already been serving; and the Stronger Truer Sewanee campaign which is close to meeting its goal of $25 million in support of theological education.