Pittsburgh Theological Seminary

Faculty on the Road

PTS faculty are on the road sharing info about their research and publications as well as the Seminary. They are preaching in churches, lecturing at conferences half way around the world, visiting students across the US, and gathering with alumnae/i. Find out where and when they will be bridging the Word and the world in your neighborhood. Plan now to join them! Would you like to schedule a faculty member to speak at your church or event? Below the list of upcoming events you'll find their areas of specialty and contact information.





Name Dates(s) Location Event Description
Steve Tuell Sundays through November 15 Pittsburgh, Pa.

In-depth Bible study at Fox Chapel PC

John Burgess Sundays through November 15 Pittsburgh, Pa. Teaching Adult Sunday School, Eastminster PC
Ron Cole-Turenr November 6 Pittsburgh, Pa. Guest lecture, University of Pittsburgh Medical School, “Stem Cell Ethics”
David Esterline November 8 Pittsburgh, Pa. Preaching at Bidwell PC
Ron Tappy November 8 and 15 Pittsburgh, Pa. Teaching Sunday morning adult education, Beulah PC
Edwin van Driel November 12-14 Pittsburgh, Pa. Paper presentation at the Theological Consultation/1001 New Worshiping Communities gathering
Angela Hancock November 13-15 Hershey, Pa. Preaching and speaking for Consecration Weekend at Derry PC
David Esterline November 15 Oakmont, Pa. Preaching at Oakmont PC
Steve Tuell November 20-24 Atlanta, Ga. Society of Biblical Literature Annual Meeting, "The Psalm in Habakkuk 3"
Ron Cole-Turner November 20-24 Atlanta, Ga. Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Religion, Speak on the panel on science and religion and preside at the business session of the “Transhumanism and Religion” group
David Esterline November 21 Oil City, Pa. Lake Erie Presbytery meeting speaker at Second PC
David Esterline November 22 Oil City, Pa. Preaching at Second PC
Ron Cole-Turner December 1-3 Washington, D.C. International Summit on Human Gene Editing, sponsored by the Chinese Academy of Sciences, the Royal Society, and the National Academy of Sciences
Ron Cole-Turner December 6 Sewickley, Pa. Adult Education Class at Sewickley PC
Ron Tappy December 10 Pittsburgh, Pa. Speaking, Biblical Archaeology Society of Pittsburgh's final lecture series
Ron Cole-Turner December 10 Winston-Salem, N.C. Wake Forest University Divinity School, consulting for the “Science in Seminaries” project of the American Association for the Advancement of Science
Edwin van Driel December 27 Pittsburgh, Pa. Preaching at Heritage PC
Ron Tappy January 3 and 10, 2016 Pittsburgh, Pa. Teaching Adult Sunday School, Fox Chapel PC
Heather Vacek January 17 Pittsburgh, Pa. Presenting "(Almost) Everything you wanted to know about Church History" at Fox Chapel PC
Ron Tappy January 17, 24, 31, February 14 Monroeville, Pa. Teaching Sunday morning adult education Lenten series at Cross Roads PC
Leanna Fuller January 28-29 Slippery Rock, Pa. Leading winter retreat for the Western Pennsylvania chapter of the International Association of Women Ministers, Crestfield Camp and Conference Center
Heather Vacek January 31 Pittsburgh, Pa. Adult education at Third PC
Ron Tappy February 4 Pittsburgh, Pa. Speaking, Biblical Archaeology Society of Pittsburgh's Final Lecture Series, Rodef Shalom
Roger Owens February 7, 14, 21, 28 Pittsburgh, Pa. Adult education at Westminster PC on practices at the heart of Christian spirituality
Edwin van Driel February 12 Louisville, Ky. Consultation on the Book of Common Worship
Heather Vacek Feburary 14 Pittsburgh, Pa. Presenting "Faith on the Ground: Protestants and Abolition in 19th Century America" at Fox Chapel PC
Leanna Fuller February 22-24 Dunkirk, N.Y. Retreat for the clergy of Lake Erie and Western New York Presbyteries
Heather Vacek March 6 and 13 Pittsburgh, Pa. Teaching Sunday School at Westminster PC on "Protestant Conceptions of Suffering"
Leanna Fuller March 20 Pittsburgh, Pa. Adult education at Westminster PC
Ron Tappy April 17 and 24 Pittsburgh, Pa. Adult education at Third PC
Ron Tappy May 15 Pittsburgh, Pa. Teaching on biblical archaeology for Classrooms without Borders
Leanna Fuller May 22 Pittsburgh, Pa. Presenting at Fox Chapel PC on "Death, Dying, and Grief"

Invite PTS Faculty to Your Site

Interested in hearing more from a faculty member during an upcoming worship service or event? Contact him or her directly or check out this list of current research interests.

John Burgess

jburgess@pts.edu / 412-924-1430

  • Church History
  • The Early Church/Church Fathers
  • Church and Politics in Russia and Ukraine
  • The Russian Orthodox Church
  • Church Unity and Division: How to Think Faithfully
  • The Ten Commandments for Today
  • The Basics of Reformed Theology
  • Christianity and Other Religions
  • What Protestants Can Learn from the Eastern Orthodox Tradition
  • Christian Worship and the Sacraments

Ron Cole-Turner

coleturn@pts.edu / 412-924-1426

  • Christianity and Human Origins in the Light of Evolutionary Biology
  • Transhumanism: Living as a Christian in an Age of Human Enhancement
  • What Christians Can Learn from Science
  • Prayer and the Trinity: Recovering a Theology of Prayer
  • Reformed Spirituality

Jerome Creach

jcreach@pts.edu / 412-924-1428

  • The Book of Psalms
  • Genesis and the Moral Imagination
  • Old Testament Ethics
  • The Old Testament Prophets
  • Violence in the Bible
  • Wisdom Literature
  • The Prophets and the Call for Justice
  • Biblical Hebrew
  • Northwest Semitic Languages

David Esterline

desterline@pts.edu / 412-924-1366

  • Continuing Education for Christian Leaders
  • The Church around the World
  • Global and Ecumenical Theological Education
  • Cross-cultural Theological Education
  • The Book of Acts
  • First Corinthians
  • The Gospel of Luke
  • Educational Diversity
  • Race, Racism, and White Privilege in the United States

Leanna Fuller

lfuller@pts.edu / 412-924-1459

  • Conflict in Congregations
  • Family Systems Theory and Congregational Life
  • Death, Dying, and Grief
  • Pastoral Care for Families

Robert Gagnon

gagnon@pts.edu / 412-924-1416

  • New Testament Greek
  • Jesus in John’s Gospel
  • The New Testament Letters (esp. Paul’s Letters)
  • Reading the Gospel of Mark as Story
  • Sexual Issues in the Bible
  • Theology of the Apostle Paul

Scott Hagley

shagley@pts.edu / 412-924-1399

  • Evangelicalism in North America
  • History of Christian Mission
  • Congregational Mission and Leadership
  • Youth Ministry
  • Theological Education for Youth
  • The Missional Church
  • Christian Mission
  • Church Planting
  • Gospel and Cultures

Angela Hancock

ahancock@pts.edu / 412-924-1451

  • John Calvin and Civil Disobedience
  • Pulpit, Politics, and Pathos: Protestant Rhetoric and the National Socialist Revolution
  • Karl Barth and the Practice of Biblical Interpretation
  • When Faithful People Disagree: Deliberation as a Christian Practice
  • The Provocative Parables of Jesus
  • Praying the Psalms
  • The Bath: Living into Your Baptism
  • Baptism and the Lord’s Supper
  • How to Listen to a Sermon
  • Practical Theodicy: What Do Christians Do when Bad Things Happen?
  • The Anatomy of Grace
  • Biblical Interpretation
  • Artistic Languages of Worship
  • Exploring Christian Worship

Edith Humphrey

ehumphrey@pts.edu / 412-924-1424

  • The Book of Acts
  • The Book of Revelation and Apocalyptic Literature
  • The Writings of John
  • The Gospels and the Life of Jesus
  • Scriptures and Tradition
  • Worship in the Bible and in the History of the Church
  • Spirituality and the Holy Trinity
  • The Sanctity of Human Life
  • Sexuality and the Church
  • Biblical Theology
  • C. S. Lewis and Theology
  • Hellenistic Jewish Literature
  • Irenaeus
  • Worship in the Bible and in the History of the Church
  • The Early Church/Church Fathers
  • Gnosticism and the Church Fathers
  • The Doctrine of the Church

Susan Kendall

skendall@pts.edu / 412-924-1421

  • Creating a Forum for Leadership as an Inclusive Enterprise
  • The Public Voice of Ministry in a Digital Age
  • Redefining Categories for What Ministry Is
  • Women’s Status in the World as a Continuing Concern
  • Privilege, Class, and Race
  • Theology and Culture
  • Collaborative and Cross-disciplinary Learning
  • Developing New, Transitional Theological Language
  • The Intersection of Theological Learning and Everyday Religious Experience
  • Understanding Vocation and Call as Practice and Possibility
  • Strengthening Feminist Theology through Cross-disciplinary Conversation
  • Theologies beyond Euro-centrism

Roger Owens

lowens@pts.edu / 412-924-1458

  • Adaptive and Missional Leadership
  • Congregational Discernment
  • Spiritual Formation
  • Spirituality for Christian Leadership
  • Christian Spirituality
  • False Self and True Self in Christian Spirituality
  • Prayer

Drew Smith

rsmith@pts.edu / 412-924-1457

  • African-American Churches
  • Churches in Africa and the African Diaspora
  • Churches and Social and Demographic Change
  • Urban Churches
  • Christianity and U.S. Foreign Policy
  • Religion and Social Movements
  • Christianity, Race, and Class
  • Faith and Public Life
  • Religion and Public Life
  • Sociology of Urban Religion

Ron Tappy

rtappy@pts.edu / 412-924-1427

  • Archaeology of the Ancient Near East/Old Testament World
  • Jerusalem and Samaria: Royal Cities of Ancient Israel
  • The Samaria Ostraca
  • Tel Zayit: A Biblical Village in the Foothills of Judah
  • The Tel Zayit Abecedary and the Origins of the Alphabet
  • The Tell Dan Inscription and the House of David
  • Biblical Archaeology
  • Extrabiblical Texts and What They Tell Us about Biblical Israel
  • Historical Geography of the Holy Land
  • History of the Ancient Near East
  • History of the Religions of Israel
  • Kinship and Covenant in the Biblical World
  • Biblical Hebrew
  • Northwest Semitic languages
  • The Battle of Lachish and the Theology of Jerusalem
  • Jacob, Esau, and the Kinship Ties that Bind
  • The Life and Times of Amos the Prophet
  • Old Testament Historical Books
  • Psalm 23 and the Psalms of Trust
  • History of the Religions of Israel

Lisa Thompson

lthompson@pts.edu / 412-924-1460

  • African-American Preaching Traditions and History
  • North American Preaching in the 19th and 20th Centuries
  • Women’s Preaching Traditions and History
  • The Community and Worship
  • Faith and Public Life
  • Theory, Teaching, and Methods of Preaching
  • The Theology and Practice of Religion
  • Gender, Race, and Privilege in Religious Rhetoric and Rituals
  • Religion and Public Life

Steve Tuell

stuell@pts.edu / 412-924-1407

  • How to Read the Bible
  • Creation in Scripture
  • The Relationship Between Science and Theology
  • Biblical Literature of the Persian Period (esp. Ezekiel and the Chronicles)
  • Ezekiel and the Minor Prophets (or the Book of the Twelve)
  • The Old Testament Prophets
  • Prophecy and Priesthood in the Hebrew Bible
  • The Worship, Faith, and Temple Ideology of Ancient Israel
  • Mythologies and Comparative Religions of the Ancient Near East
  • The Religion of Ancient Israel
  • The Idea of Scripture in Ancient Israel
  • The Significance of the Hebrew Bible as Scripture for Christians and Jews
  • Aramaic
  • Biblical Hebrew
  • Ugaritic

Heather Vacek

hvacek@pts.edu / 412-924-1453

  • Christianity in America
  • History of the Christian Tradition
  • Protestants and Mental Illness in America
  • Twentieth-century American Protestantism
  • History of Protestants and Mental Illness in America
  • Theologies of Disability and Suffering
  • Reformation History
  • History of Christianity and Politics in America

Edwin Chr. van Driel

evandriel@pts.edu / 412-924-1425

  • Ecclesiology and What It Means to “Be” Church
  • Christ and the Incarnation
  • Eschatology
  • Congregational Song