Appointment of the Rev. Dr. Karen Petersen Finch

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The Board of Governors of The Presbyterian College, Montreal, is pleased to announce the appointment of the Rev. Dr. Karen Petersen Finch to a three-year term as Professor of Pastoral Leadership. This announcement follows a full and rigorous search process, and the Board is delighted with this conclusion to that process.

The Rev. Petersen Finch is an ordained minister of the Presbyterian Church USA and a member of the Presbytery of the Inland Northwest of that denomination. She presently serves as Associate Professor of Theology at Whitworth University in Spokane, Washington, a position to which she was appointed in 2009. Whitworth is a private liberal arts college in the Reformed Tradition. Karen is a graduate of Princeton Theological Seminary (MDiv) and of Gonzaga University (PhD), with the latter studies and research completed in the area of Leadership Studies and Theology.

Among her research and theological interests, the Rev. Petersen Finch is particularly focused on ecumenical dialogue at the grassroots level. She has been actively involved in adult education and ecumenical conversations between Presbyterian and Catholic congregations in Spokane and is presently working toward the publication of a book entitled Grassroots Ecumenism: The Path Towards Local Christian Kinship. The Board of Governors recognize the importance of such collaboration and sharing, particularly in relation to the diverse and expanding partnerships of The Presbyterian College in theological education.

The Rev. Petersen Finch is deeply rooted in the Reformed Tradition—both her PhD studies and her present teaching have been focused on Reformed theology. She has also published academically on the work of John Calvin and related dimensions of our theological tradition. We are grateful that Karen will bring this embeddedness within the Reformed Tradition to her work of teaching and pastoral formation at the College.

In addition to the above gifts, the Rev. Petersen Finch brings a record of, and commitment to, solid pedagogical practice. She is a teacher at heart, and we trust that her commitment to education will be a blessing to our students and those of our partner colleges. As she participates in the formation of pastoral and missional leaders, Karen brings evident spiritual wisdom and pastoral sensitivity to this work, and as a community we look forward to these gifts she will bring to our shared life.

We invite you to join with us in welcoming the Rev. Dr. Karen Petersen Finch as she takes up the role of Professor of Pastoral Leadership and invite you also to pray for her, and for our community, as we continue in our ministry in theological education here in Montreal. In terms of a timeline for Karen’s move to Canada and to Montreal, it is our expectation that Karen will join us as of mid-July of this year.

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