Meet Our Graduates

May 3, 2013

Featured here are four of this year’s 53 graduates of Pacific School of Religion. We share with you a snapshot of each of their stories and thank you for your partnership in helping to send them out into the world as well-trained, compassionate, and visionary leaders.

Melissa Tumaneng came to PSR with an MBA and from a career in the world of high tech business. She is leaving PSR with an MDiv to create a path in corporate chaplaincy.

 “I want to bring spirituality and authentic engagement to the workplace because we are spiritually the same person inside and outside of the workplace. Many people are yearning to fill that void and be whole beings at work and at church. I see my ministry as that bridge-maker for staff, customers, and business leaders.”

Florentino Cordova graduates from PSR this May with an MDiv. Florentino will be moving to Watsonville, California to start a bilingual Hispanic congregation, Iglesia Del Caliz, a joint venture between the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) (DOC) and the Metropolitan Community Church (MCC).

“PSR taught me the importance of building community. The church in Watsonville has already started doing this by partnering with schools and community organizations. We envision a community that is empowered by the Spirit to create an environment that will always function as a safe space for all of God’s creation.”

Niels Teunis came to PSR with a PhD and teaching experience in sexuality studies and anthropology. He has felt a deep sense of community at PSR and is leaving with an MDiv and a desire to extend that community to others.

“One class that greatly impacted me was Spiritually Informed Pastoral Care with Professor Joe Driskill. The class created a space for a diverse and international group, where everyone could really hear each other in new ways. I have never forgotten this experience. The question I leave with is: how can we really hear each other and connect on a deep spiritual level despite the many ways the world divides us?”

Lindsey Kerr served as a United Methodist young adult missionary in the Philippines before coming to PSR to continue her activism and advocacy work. In July she will become the Associate Pastor at First United Methodist Church in Santa Rosa, California.

“Education is an ongoing process that changes us – the more we know, the more we should be filled with hope and a passion for justice. I see my theological education as something that belongs to the community I am going to serve and I am really interested in sharing it with them.”

Your support will help us continue the work of training the next generation of theologically rooted and spiritually grounded leaders. Give online today!