Theology Professor and SNU Alumni Group Awarded Pastoral Grant

Theology Professor and SNU Alumni Group Awarded Pastoral Grant

Professor Marty Alan Michelson and six alumni of Southern Nazarene University’s School of Theology & Ministry have been awarded a $2750 grant from the Samford University Resource Center for Pastoral Excellence.  

Funded by the Lilly Foundation, Inc., the grant recognizes the challenges and demands of pastoral work, leaving ministers to feel stressed, resulting in decreasing ministry focus and creativity.  The Grant provides this seven member team with funds to collaborate on a book project that will mentor new ministers for the challenges of ministry.  The book will guide new ministers preparing for effective life-long ministry.

Wendell Sutton, J.D. is team member and graduate of SNU’s Master of Arts in Theology program.  Wendell, a Professor at Mid-America Christian University says, “The M.A. in Theology program at Southern Nazarene University has been invaluable not only in preparation for equipping undergraduate ministry students to impact their world for Christ in their chosen vocation, but also in the opportunity to develop friendships outside the classroom.  The Samford grant will strengthen the peer to peer and mentoring relationship I am blessed to experience among ministry colleagues.”

Along with the funds provided by Samford, each member of the team has committed hours for work together alongside personal funds toward their shared times for engagement and writing.  Other benefactors contributing generous space and collaboration toward the Book project include:  Tom Ward with SandRidge Energy in Oklahoma City and Steve & Chelsee Walden of Oak Harbor, WA.    

“SNU is a wonderful starting place on this journey of life-long learning.  Many of SNU’s professors have heavily invested in me for extended success in pastoral ministry.  The Samford grant will enable our team to share the life-long community with others and hopefully make a significant impact on young ministers that will sustain and carry throughout their ministry,” stated Levi Jones, SNU Alum and participant.

“It is a privilege to work with great learners at SNU who are training for a life-time of ministry” says Michelson.  “The seven of us invested in this project are committed to helping young ministers - and people newly in ministry - engage faithful practices in ministry that bear fruit for a lifetime.”

The seven member team, graduates of the SNU School of Theology and Ministry include:  Jeremy Graham, Levi Jones, Paul Metcalfe, Marty Alan Michelson, Eli Pagel, Wendell Sutton & Stephen Vandervort.   

Southern Nazarene University's mission is to transform lives through higher education in Christ-centered community. As a Christian community of scholars, we model the hospitality of grace, the pursuit of truth and the practice of discipleship, all within the Wesleyan-holiness tradition, as we prepare graduates who THINK with clarity, ACT with integrity and SERVE with purpose.