Pittsburgh Theological Seminary

Lectures on Faith and Worship in the Face of Mortality

Pittsburgh Theological Seminary will host the 2011 J. Hubert Henderson Conference on Church and Ministry Fri., May 6. Lecturers Thomas G. Long and Thomas Lynch will present three lectures on the theme “Faith and Worship in the Face of Human Mortality.” Come join us as we consider death, funerals, and reasons for hope and joy—now and in the future.

The schedule includes “The Promise and Peril of the Christian Funeral” by Thomas Long at 11:30 a.m.; “The Undertaking: Dealing with Death by Dealing with Our Dead” by Thomas Lynch at 2:30 p.m.; and “Thomas Long and Thomas Lynch in Dialogue” at 4:30 p.m. The lectures are free and open to the public. Contact the Office of Continuing Education at 412-924-1345 or ConEd@testsite.pts.edu for more information.

Long is Bandy Professor of Preaching at Candler School of Theology, Emory University, in Atlanta, Ga. Prior to coming to Chandler, Long taught at Princeton Theological Seminary and Columbia Theological Seminary. He has also served as a pastor and as director of Congregational Resources for the Presbyterian Publishing Corporation. He is a graduate of Erskine College (B.A.), Erskine Theological Seminary (M.Div.), and Princeton Theological Seminary (Ph.D.). Long is the author of 19 books, including his recent study of the theology and practice of Christian funerals, Accompany Them with Singing: The Christian Funeral (WJK, 2009). His 1989 book The Witness of Preaching, now in its second edition, continues to be one of the most widely used texts on preaching. His book Preaching from Memory to Hope (WJK, 2009), was named as one of the “top ten books for parish ministry published in 2009” by the Academy of Parish Clergy. Long is a frequent contributor to The Christian Century and the Journal for Preachers, and he is a popular presenter at preaching conferences worldwide. He is an ordained minister in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).

Lynch is the author of four books of poems, three books of essays, a book of short fictions, and a play. He resides in Milford, Mich., where he has been the funeral director since 1974. Beginning with Skating with Heather Grace (Knopf, 1986), his writings have received more and more attention and praise. Lynch’s book, The Undertaking (Norton, 1997), won the American Book Award and was a finalist for the National Book Award. The work was also the subject of PBS Frontline’s The Undertaking, which won the 2008 Emmy Award for Arts and Culture Documentary. A second documentary, Learning Gravity, produced for the BBC, was featured at the 2008 Telluride Film Festival and the 6th Traverse City Film Festival in 2009, where it won the Michigan Prize. For much of his time, Lynch lives in Moveen, West Clare, Ireland, where he keeps an ancestral home. He has read and lectured at universities and literary centers throughout Europe and across the English-speaking world. He is a regular presenter to professional conferences of funeral directors, hospice and medical ethics professionals, clergy, educators, and business leaders. Lynch has also appeared on C-SPAN, MSNBC, The Today Show, and PBS.

Pittsburgh Theological Seminary is a graduate professional institution of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A). Founded in 1794, the Seminary is located in Pittsburgh, Pa. and approximately 320 students are enrolled yearly in the degree programs. The Seminary prepares leaders who proclaim with great joy God’s message of good news in both word and deed. PTS is rooted in the Reformed history of faithfulness to Scripture and commitment to the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

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