Ecumenical Theological Seminary Appoints Rev. Dr. Stephen Butler Murray New President

Apr 29, 2014, 11:00 ET from Ecumenical Theological Seminary

DETROIT, April 29, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Rev. Dr. Stephen Butler Murray has been appointed president and professor of Systematic Theology and Preaching at the Ecumenical Theological Seminary (ETS) in Detroit. He will officially assume his position as ETS president on July 1. Currently, Rev. Dr. Murray is the founding Dean of the College and Associate Professor of Theology at Barrytown College, a new liberal arts college in upstate New York which focuses on the study of world religion and philosophy. He also serves as Senior Pastor of The First Baptist Church of Boston, Massachusetts and as American Baptist Chaplain to Harvard University and Denominational Counselor and Lecturer in Ministry at Harvard Divinity School.

Previously, he served as the chaplain and on the faculty of Endicott College, Skidmore College, and Suffolk University, and as an administrator at Yale University's Dwight Hall Center for Public Service and Social Justice.  In parish ministry, Rev. Dr. Murray has served as the pastor of American Baptist, Lutheran, Presbyterian, and United Church of Christ congregations in urban, suburban, and rural settings of Massachusetts and New York.

The Chair of the ETS Board of Directors, Katherine Nyberg, believes Rev. Dr. Murray's combined experience and superb abilities make him a perfect fit for ETS. "He brings impressive scholarship, administrative skills, and a pastor's heart for the neighborhood," said Nyberg. "It is with tremendous joy and gratitude that I welcome Rev. Dr. Murray into the ETS community."

Rev. Dr. Murray is a scholar in the fields of historical and systematic theology, Christian ethics, homiletics, and interfaith dialogue. He is a prolific writer and has published many articles as well as three books, Friendship Across Religions; Reclaiming Divine Wrath: A History of a Christian Doctrine and Its Interpretation; and Crossing By Faith: Sermons on the Transition from Youth to Adulthood.  He currently serves on the Emerging Theologians Task Force of the American Baptist ChurchesUSA, charged with developing opportunities for theological discussions in the denomination. He has also served as a denominational delegate to the General Assembly of the National Council of Churches.

Rev. Dr. Murray received a Bachelor of Arts degree in philosophy and religion from Bucknell University, a Master of Business Administration degree from Endicott College, a Master of Divinity degree from Yale University Divinity School, and the M.Phil. and Ph.D. in systematic theology from Union Theological Seminary in New York City.

Rev. Dr. Murray says he is looking forward to joining the ETS family and helping the seminary contribute to the renewal of Detroit. "ETS is tied deeply to the city of Detroit, and is poised to be a leading voice of conscience in a city that seeks to reaffirm, restore and redefine itself," said Rev. Dr. Murray. "I cannot imagine a more pressing time to help that necessary voice speak the truths that Detroit needs, and I am eager to begin the good and holy work that we will do together in the years ahead."

Ecumenical Theological Seminary is nationally recognized as a unique learning environment, equipped to prepare individuals to meet the challenges of ministry in urban centers. Established in 1980, ETS is an accredited institution that provides students with an outstanding theological education, preparing them to serve as skilled pastors in religious institutions and also teaching them the skills they need to become active, compassionate ministers in today's complex, multicultural and economically diverse communities.  ETS alumni serve congregations and communities throughout the U.S. and the world.

About Ecumenical Theological Seminary
Ecumenical Theological Seminary is accredited by the Commission on Accrediting of the Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada, and the following degree programs are approved; MDiv, MA in Pastoral Ministry, DMin.  ETS is the only ATS-accredited seminary of the Protestant Tradition located within the City of Detroit. ETS provides a multi-confessional Christian theological education within an urban context, while initiating interfaith engagement. ETS graduates are prepared to lead communities of faith while sharing God's compassion in relationship to various ecumenical, interfaith, political, social, economic, and cultural contexts.

SOURCE Ecumenical Theological Seminary