Walk in the footsteps of Jesus and watch the Bible come alive in the Holy Land
Walk in the footsteps of Jesus and watch the Bible come alive in the Holy Land
In 2020, witness the Oberammergau Passion Play that is only produced every 10 years.
Cruise Paul's Journeys, the Lands of the Bible and across the Mediterranean
Sail along the Rhine, Danube, Mostelle Rivers and more on a River Cruise.
Discover the roots of the early church on our heritage land tours
Learn about the journeys of Paul on our Italy, Greece and Turkey land tours
From Ireland and Scotland to Africa and India, EO can guide you around the world
Cruise to Alaska, the Baltic Sea, Canada, the Caribbean and more
Over 50,000 people have served in over 152 countries with the help of EO
Christian Music is the expression of our faith and a witness to the world
Dr. Craig C. Hill is Dean and Professor of New Testament at Perkins School of Theology. Previously he was on the faculty at Duke Divinity School and Wesley Theological Seminary. Dean Hill served as Chaplain at Christ Church College, University of Oxford and has been on staff at three United Methodist Churches. Dean Hill is also the author of numerous scholarly articles and books.
Dr. Wayne Pernell brings more than thirty-five years of experience as an advisor to leaders. Dr P. has appeared in Forbes, and featured on Fox and NBC, and is an internationally acclaimed and best-selling Author, Speaker, and Certified High Performance Coach. Dr. Pernell leverages clarity and focus as foundational elements in building relationships and developing leadership skills, the basis for his DynamicLeader programs.
Steven is Senior Pastor of First United Methodist Church of Achorage, Alaska and First Samoan UMC.
Stephen is an ordained clergy member of the United Methodist Church and currently serves as Publisher of The Upper Room and Associate General Secretary at Discipleship Ministries. From 1986- 1992, Steve served as the Director of Spiritual Formation for The Upper Room and as the International Spiritual Director of The Walk to Emmaus and Chrysalis movements. He is an author and launched Discipleship Resources International, a resourcing initiative for Central Conferences.
Laura Steward is a sought after business strategist, speaker, radio host and author. After building and selling her highly successful multi-state technology services company she started Wisdom Learned, LLC, a company dedicated to educating leaders based on experience and wisdom learned in the trenches. She is the author of the Nautilus award-winning, International bestselling book “What Would a Wise Woman Do? Questions to Ask Along the Way”. Through her weekly broadcast Radio Show, It’s All About the Questions, keynote speeches, books, seminars, training and one-one sessions, Laura’s mission is clear – help people get off autopilot and create amazing, successful lives.
Deb Lewis & Doug Adams went on a fifty-state - 18k mile bicycling tour to raise awareness of veteran and military issues. Their passion is to help others build stronger relationships, love their lives and fulfill their dreams. Deb is a daughter, sister, wife, mother, pioneer, retired Colonel, Combat Veteran, Harvard MBA, Author, Speaker, Leader, Adventure Guide and much more... Doug is a son, brother, husband, father, grandfather, retired Lieutenant Colonel, Cyclist, Lawyer, Author, Speaker, Non-profit Leader, Adventure Guide.
Jan Deardorff thrives on dreaming big and enriching women’s lives by helping them become all that God wants them to be. Jan started her Mary Kay Business in 1991 and has driven free over the last 27 years earning the use of 15 free cars, 5 being Pink Cadillacs. Jan has built her unit to produce upwards of $500k in retail sales annually. She believes, while it is not always easy, you can enjoy life to the fullest, it is a matter of want to!
Pat, as President of Compass Consultants, LLC, assists churches with capital campaigns. She is an international consultant/instructor in stewardship, a board member of the General Board of Church and Society and a recipient of the Denman Award for Evangelism. Pat has been a retreat leader for the Academy for Spiritual Formation for over a decade. She has been involved in the Emmaus ministry since participating in the Alabama Walk to Emmaus #25 in 1985.
Pastor Jacob and Rachel founded Providence Church near Nashville, TN in 2008 to see those who are disconnected from God and the church find hope, healing and wholeness in Jesus Christ. Jacob is an author of 10 books. He and Rachel co-authored the book The Connected Life: Small Groups that Build Community. Jacob attended a Chrysalis walk where he felt called to the ministry in 1998. Rachel attended the Walk to Emmaus in 2002.
Rev. Dr. James W. Voelz is the Dr. Jack Dean Kingsbury Professor of New Testament Theology and graduate professor of Exegetical Theology at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis. Among his foci are the Synoptic Gospels and the Gospel of Mark. He has also taught the Pauline epistles and Acts of the Apostles. He is a member of SBL and SNTS and regularly present papers for both organizations. Jim has also served in churches as Bible teacher and assistant pastor.
Pastor Bryan Loritts serves the Abundant Life Christian Fellowship of Silicon Valley, California, as the Lead Pastor. He is an award winning author of five books and his latest book is Saving the Saved. Pastor Loritts co-founded Fellowship Memphis, and The Kainos Movement- an organization committed to seeing the multiethnic church become the new normal in our world. In addition he preaches at conferences and events, and serves on the board of trustees for Biola University and PineCove Christian Camps. His messages can be heard daily on the Salem Radio Network’s KFAX station.
Bishop Guy Erwin serves the Southwest California Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. Previously, he has served as professor at California Lutheran University and Yale Divinity School as well as part-time interim pastor for 3 ELCA congregations. During the Reformation anniversary in 2017, Bishop Erwin gave 30 lectures related to Luther and the Reformation in the US and Germany.
The Rev. Dr. Judy Fentress‐Williams is Professor of Old Testament at Virginia Theological Seminary and Senior Assistant to the Pastor and Christian Education Director at Alfred Street Baptist Church. Previously she was a member of the faculty at Hartford Seminary. Dr. Fentress‐Williams has published numerous essays and books in addition to being the Old Testament editor and contributor for the CEB Women’s Bible.
Edwina’s life has been described by Publisher’s Weekly as “fascinating – an exceptional blend of contemplation and action.” Her journey has led her to teaching in Africa, founding the Volunteer Missionary Movement (VMM), sojourning in the Sahara Desert, spending nine months of prayer in a trailer in the woods, befriending and ministering to street people and women in prostitution – “God’s little ones,” and preaching the Good News: God Is With Us. Edwina is a poet, theologian, artist, writer, and lay minister. She is a single mom and has been described as a modern day mystic and prophet. She gives talks, conferences and retreats in the United States, as well as internationally while continuing to reach out to women in recovery from drugs and prostitution.
Dr. Erwin W. Lutzer is Pastor Emeritus of The Moody Church where he served as the Senior Pastor of 36 years. A clear expositor of the Bible, he is the featured speaker on 3 radio programs that are heard on more than 1,000 outlets around the world. Dr. Lutzer is also an award-winning author and speaks at Bible conferences and seminars domestically and internationally. He has traveled extensively with groups to Europe and his insights will enhance your understanding of the church and your faith.
The Reverend Dr. Russell Levenson and his wife, Laura, live in Houston, Texas where he has served our nation’s largest Episcopal Church, St. Martin’s, for over a decade. He received his Master of Divinity from Virginia Theological Seminary and his Doctor of Ministry from Beeson Divinity School. Prior to coming to St. Martin’s, Levenson served in Sewanee, Tennessee; Birmingham, Alabama; Lafayette, Louisiana an Pensacola, Florida. In addition to being a frequent guest speaker and retreat leader, he has written over 50 articles for various magazines and theological journals, preached a number of times for Day One and authored four devotional books – Autumn Leaves, Preparing Room, Provoking Thoughts and Summer Times about which political historian and former editor of Newsweek magazine, Jon Meacham, wrote, “The traditional Anglican term for the days and weeks of summer is ‘Ordinary Time,’ but this small but potent book is anything but. It is a an extraordinary gift to all of us from Russ Levenson, priest and pastor.”
Ben Witherington III (PhD, University of Durham) is a prominent evangelical scholar and Jean R. Amos Professor of New Testament for Doctoral Studies at Asbury Theological Seminary. Witherington has written over forty books, including The Jesus Quest and The Paul Quest, both of which were selected as top biblical studies works by Christianity Today. His other works include The Indelible Image, Women and the Genesis of Christianity, The Gospel Code, A Week in the Life of Corinth, and commentaries on the entire New Testament. He also writes for many church and scholarly publications and is a frequent contributor to Patheos and Beliefnet.
Witherington is an elected member of the prestigious Studiorum Novi Testamenti Societas, a society dedicated to New Testament studies. He is a John Wesley Fellow for Life, a research fellow at Cambridge University, and a member of numerous professional organizations, including the Society of Biblical Literature, Society for the Study of the New Testament, and the Institute for Biblical Research. He previously taught at institutions like Ashland Theological Seminary, Vanderbilt University, Duke Divinity School, and Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary.
An ordained pastor in the United Methodist Church and a popular lecturer, Witherington has presented seminars for churches, colleges, and biblical meetings around the world. He has led numerous study tours through the lands of the Bible and is known for bringing the text to life through incisive historical and cultural analysis. Along with many interviews on radio and television networks across the country, Witherington has been seen in programs such as 60 Minutes, 20/20, Dateline, and the Peter Jennings ABC special Jesus and Paul—The Word and the Witness.
Char and I are delighted to invite you to join us on a 10-day spiritual pilgrimage to visit the lands and places that were integral to The Life and Teachings of Paul. This once-in-a-lifetime pilgrimage will bring many locations in the Book of Acts to life and provide new insights into the letters and epistles of Paul, the apostle to the Gentiles and the greatest missionary of Christian history.
Char and I have been blessed by previous trips that traced Paul’s missionary journeys. Each provided us, and those who journeyed with us, wonderful new perspectives on the Scriptures, opportunities to grow in faith, and renewed passion for the church’s mission.
Imagine yourself in Athens, standing in the marketplace (agora) where Paul debated with the leaders of the many religious and philosophical schools that flourished there. Some of the Greeks took Paul aside and asked him, “May we know what this new teaching is that you are presenting? It sounds rather strange to us, so we would like to know what it means” (Acts 17:19-20). The deep “strangeness” and mystery of the Christian message is perennial, as is the imperative to not only understand it with our minds, but to also let it shape our hearts and lives. Through this pilgrimage you will be confronted, shaped, and enlightened in new and profound ways by the “strangeness” of the Gospel. Come and explore once again “what it means.”
We look forward to seeing you on The Journeys of Paul!
Benjamin Michael Watson has been the resident bishop of The United Methodist Church’s North Georgia Episcopal Area since 2008. The North Georgia Conference has over 362,000 members, 950 congregations, and 1,400 clergy. In 1949, he was born into an active Methodist family in Dothan, Alabama. After graduating from Dothan High School, he received a Bachelor of Science degree in finance and real estate from The University of Alabama, a Master of Divinity degree from Candler School of Theology at Emory University, and earned a Doctor of Ministry degree from Vanderbilt University. In 1972 he was ordained deacon by Bishop W. Kenneth Goodson, and in 1976 he was ordained elder by Bishop Carl J. Sanders. Bishop Watson was elected to the episcopacy by the Southeastern Jurisdictional Conference in 2000 and was assigned to the South Georgia Area where he served until 2008. Bishop Watson is currently the president of World Methodist Evangelism, chair of the World Methodist Evangelism Institute, and on the Steering Committee of the World Methodist Council. He is the secretary of the Council of Bishops Leadership Team on Ecumenical and Interreligious Relations. He serves on the Board of Trustees of Emory University, Gammon Theological Seminary, the Moscow Theological Seminary, Clark Atlanta University, LaGrange College, Paine College, Reinhardt University, Wesleyan College, Young Harris College, UM Children’s Home, Georgia UM Foundation, Camp Glisson, Simpsonwood Conference & Retreat Center, the Methodist Foundation for Retired Ministers, and the William I. H. and Lula E. Pitts Foundation. Bishop Watson is a past president of the Southeastern Jurisdiction College of Bishops. He is the immediate past chairperson of the Board of Directors of the General Board of Pension and Health Benefits (the largest denominational pension fund in the world, with over $18 billion in assets and 74,000 participants), and he served as vice-chairperson of the General Commission on United Methodist Men. As a member of the Alabama-West Florida Annual Conference, Mike Watson received the Denman Evangelism Award in 1990. He served from 1975-1977 as pastor of Aldersgate United Methodist Church in Molino, Florida, and from 1977-1979 as pastor of Christ United Methodist Church in Milton, Florida. He was appointed to start a new congregation in his hometown, where he served as founding pastor of Covenant United Methodist Church from 1979-1990. From 1990 until his election to the episcopacy by the Southeastern Jurisdictional Conference in 2000, he served as the pastor of Dauphin Way United Methodist Church in Mobile, Alabama. Bishop Watson also served as president of the Mobile County School Board, which is the largest school system in the state of Alabama with more than 66,000 students, nearly 8,000 employees, 100 schools and a $450,000,000 annual budget. He served as chairperson of his conference Board of Ordained Ministry, chairperson of the conference Three-year Covenant Community for Spiritual Formation, chairperson of the steering committee of the Southeastern Jurisdiction's larger church consultation, a member of the Emmaus Community, a trustee of several colleges, a member of Emory University's Clergy Advisory Council, president of the Mobile Rotary Club, president of The University of Alabama alumni chapter, president of the ministerial union, board member of the United Way, Boys Club, Girl Scouts, Red Cross, and Inner City Mission. He had also served as the president of the Dothan Kiwanis Club. Bishop Watson has written for the Adult Bible Series, The Living Pulpit and The Upper Room. He has traveled and spoken extensively in over sixty countries around the world. He was a delegate to World Methodist Conferences in Singapore (1991), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (1996), Bristol, England (2001), Seoul, Korea (2006), and Durban, South Africa (2011), and has been a part of every General Conference of The United Methodist Church since 1996 in Denver, Cleveland, Pittsburg, Fort Worth, and Tampa. Bishop Watson is married to the former Margaret Lee and has two children, Ben Watson and Elizabeth Watson Riddle. He is also the proud grandfather of Alex and Andrew Watson, and Camilla, Watson and Emmaline Riddle.
Rev. Keith Loesch is the founder and past director of the Wittenberg English Ministry in Germany – a cross‐denomination ministry that serves hundreds of thousands of tourists who visit Wittenberg annually. Keith is a Lutheran pastor, of German heritage with ancestral roots to the towns of Rochlitz and Glauchau in Saxony. He has a passion for the life and ministry of Martin Luther and also for serving people today.
Dr. Bob Westin has degrees in Art History and 40 years teaching experience at the University of Florida and Arizona State Universities. He has led Study Abroad programs throughout Europe and cruised throughout the world. Dr. Westin has worked in the Secret Archives at the Vatican and was a consultant to Dan Brown, author of The Da Vinci Code. Bob is a dynamic speaker and believes travel should be fun. He is a member of Trinity United Methodist Church in Gainseville, FL.
Study the life of the Apostle Paul with Bishop Mike Lowry, Dr. John McKellar, & Dr. Todd Renner.
Dr. Michael Williams was educated at Vanderbilt University, Garrett‐Evangelical Theological Seminary, and earned a Ph.D. from Northwestern University. Michael has served churches in the Tennessee Conference of the United Methodist Church and taught courses for Garrett Seminary, Vanderbilt Divinity School, Candler School of Theology, and the Doctor of Ministry programs of Drew and Wesley Theological Seminaries. He is the author of numerous articles, stories, poems, plays and books. He has been a featured storyteller at the National Storytelling Festival and has taught at the National Institutes of Storytelling.
Dr. Roger J. Green taught biblical and theological studies at Asbury College for three years, and at Barrington College/Gordon College for 43 years. He retired in August of 2016. While at Gordon College he held the Terrelle B. Crum Chair of Humanities, and was the chair of the Department of Biblical Studies and Christian Ministries for 26 years. He was a contributor to the Wesley Bible and the Reflecting God Study Bible. He is a noted author of three books and travels internationally teaching and preaching at conferences and retreats for both ministers and laity. Roger and his wife, Karen, have traveled to Israel 13 times.
Dr. Jonathan S. Raymond is a professor, author, and lecturer on cross‐cultural social psychology (Asbury University and the University of Kentucky) and Wesleyan thought. He is presently the President Emeritus and Senior Fellow, Trinity Western University and Seminary, Langley, British Columbia (Canada). He has served on the faculties of Arizona State University and the University of Hawaii, an administrator at Gordon College and Greenville College, and President and Vice Chancellor at Booth University College (1999‐2006) Winnipeg, Manitoba, and President and Vice Chancellor at Trinity Western University (2006‐ 2013). He has led several study tours to the Holy Land, and in demand as a conference speaker.
Dr. John Harnish is a retired United Methodist pastor and former Associate General Secretary with the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry. For 12 years he was a member of the Board of Trustees at the Baltic Methodist Theological Seminary in Tallinn, Estonia. He is a graduate of Asbury Theological Seminary and holds a Doctor of Divinity from Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary. Dr. Harnish is a native of Pennsylvania and served most of his ministry in the Detroit Annual Conference. His most recent publication is Do Not Be Afraid: Bishops and Young Clergy Share Words of Resurrection and Signs of Hope, published by Cass Community Publishing House in the inner city of Detroit.
It will be a holy privilege to help promote a Women's Pilgrimage to the Holy Land in 2018 through EO. I anticipate that we will have a unique opportunity to experience the Holy Land through the lens of women of Scripture. We will learn what it meant for them to navigate their world and culture. We will see how coming to believe in Jesus of Nazareth transformed their lives and gave them a new future. We will be invited to learn from these women, our sisters in the Christian faith. We will gain new insights and courage to live with boldness in our time.
Darrell Huckaby is a teacher, author of 10 books, radio commentator and world traveler. He speaks extensively across the south to church and civic organizations as well as corporate functions. He is known for his down home humor and unique reflections on life in the South "the way it was, the way it used to be, and the way it ought to be."
Hank Babin is a Deacon and also Executive Secretary for the National Diaconate Institute for Continuing Education. He is a great speaker that combines a strong spiritual message with homespun southern humor.
Melissa and Sean Spoelstra are a wife/husband team who are first Christ-followers and then parents to four teenagers. They both have degrees in Bible Theology; Melissa speaks to groups around the country and is author of three Bible studies on Jeremiah, Joseph and First Corinthians. Sean is the church planter and pastor of Encounter Church. Previously he served as Pastor of Family Ministries for Grace Church in Powell, OH.
David Faust is currently Associate Minister at East 91st Street Christian Church and focuses on biblical teaching, leadership development and pastoral care. He was senior minister at E91 from 1999 - 2002 and then president of Cincinnati Christian University for 12 years. He has planted churches, written 15 books and writes a weekly column for THE LOOKOUT magazine.
The Rev. Dr. Donald Fishburne is an Episcopal priest and travel writer who serves as a consultant to clergy and congregations in several denominations in leadership, stewardship ministries, outreach, and in planning mission trips, pilgrimages, sabbatical travel and leisure trips. He and Sarah have enjoyed time in the UK and Europe including Germany, Paris and Rome. They have made three Rhine and Danube River cruises as well as several EO Holy Land Pilgrimages, an EO cruise to Cuba with educational and religious elements, and cruises to the Caribbean and Alaska. For fifteen summers they have enjoyed the coast of Maine, “Way Up Down East.” See: www.DonaldFishburne.net
Richard "Dick" Wills was born in Texas, graduated from Florida Southern University with a B.S. in psychology and received his M. Div. from Candler School of Theology, Emory University. He was granted honorary doctorates from both Bethune‐Cookman College and Florida Southern College. Dick accepted Christ and felt the call to be a pastor while in the seventh grade in South Houston, Texas. His family moved to Miami, and Dick was ordained in the Florida Annual Conference as a deacon and as an elder. For 18 years he served as senior pastor of Christ Church United Methodist in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. It was while serving there a friend suggested he attend the World Methodist Evangelism Conference in Johannesburg, South Africa. This was the beginning of a spiritual renewal in his life that deeply affected his life and leadership in the church. In 2000 Dick authored the book, Waking to God's Dream: Spiritual Leadership & Church Renewal. From 2004 – 2011 he served as Bishop of the Nashville Episcopal Area. He has since retired to Florida with his wife of 51 years, Eileen.
~~Shane Stanford is the Senior Pastor of Christ United Methodist Church, a 6,000-member congregation in Memphis, TN. Stanford is the author of numerous books including The Seven Next Words of Christ, Mosaic, You Can’t Do Everything… So Do Something, The CURE for the Chronic Life, Making Life Matter, The Five Stones, and What the Prayers of Jesus Tell Us About the Heart of God —all published by Abingdon Press. He also wrote A Positive Life (Zondervan 2010) and When God Disappears (Regal 2008), both detailing his journey as an HIV-positive and HepC-positive (both contracted through blood transfusions used to treat his hemophilia) minister, father and husband.
Stanford travels extensively sharing a story of hope and courage grounded in his faith in Jesus Christ. He has spoken at several national venues including the 2006 Saddleback Global AIDS Summit where he shared the agenda with such notables as, then-Senator Barack Obama, Franklin Graham, and John Ortberg. He has appeared on various media outlets including ABC’s Good Morning America, CNN, Canada’s Harvest TV, Fox & Friends, and Life Today.
Stanford is also the co-host (with Dr. Maxie Dunnam) of We Believe in Memphis and the teacher/host of You Matter, two television programs airing in the Memphis metro area. For four years, Stanford hosted The United Methodist Hour, a radio and television ministry which aired in more than 30 million homes. Stanford is currently the co-host of a nationally distributed DVD/media Bible study series entitled Covenant, published by the United Methodist Publishing House.
Stanford is a graduate of the Honors College of the University of Southern Mississippi (B.A), Duke University (M.Div.) and was awarded a honorary doctorate (D.D.) from Asbury Theological Seminary. He also has extended training in Marriage and Family Therapy and Counseling.
Stanford is an ordained Elder in the United Methodist Church. He is married to his high school sweetheart, Dr. Pokey Stanford, and they are the parents of three daughters, Sarai Grace (20), Juli Anna (17), and Emma Leigh (13).
Jason Moore works to change the world through deep, meaningful, creative worship. An author of nine books, Jason has designed worship alongside leaders Adam Hamilton, Mike Slaughter, Tony Campolo, Leonard Sweet and others. His ministry began at Ginghamsburg Church and then he co-founded Midnight Oil Productions. He speaks and consults with Churches, denomination offices and ministries across the country.
Jeremy Hearn has a passion for worship ministry done well. He is currently practicing this as the Eleven20 Worship Leader at First United Methodist Church of Lakeland, FL. Previously he served as church planter/worship leader for a church in Austin, TX. Jeremy also worked in the Christian and Country music industries in Nashville with major record labels and artists including Martina McBride, Michael W. Smith, Jeremy Camp and others.
Ron Edmondson has more than 30 years leadership experience, mostly as a self-employed business owner. He has been in full-time ministry for over a decade, successfully led the restart of two church plants, and is witnessing God’s hand in the revitalization in his current position as senior pastor of Immanuel Baptist Church in Lexington, KY. Pastor Edmondson actively blogs with published works on leadership, church and family published on Ministry Matters, Church Leaders.com, The Christian Post. Read his blog at www.ronedmondson.com.
Karoline Lewis is Associate Professor of Biblical Preaching and The Marbury E. Anderson Chair of Biblical Preaching at Luther Seminary in St. Paul, MN. She received a Doctor of Philosophy in New Testament from Emory University. Karoline is ordained in the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America and served as an associate pastor before teaching full-time. She speaks to congregations, leads retreats and presents at conferences throughout the country and is the author of numerous books and articles.
Patricia Wilson, the author of Quiet Spaces, spent many years as a professional motivational speaker and has worked in pastoral and palliative care. She writes on a variety of subjects including inspirational themes, coping with change and short mystery stories. Her other books include When You Come Unglued…Stick Close to Godand Freedom from Worry.
Jane Herring is a Presbyterian pastor who has also taught college literature courses. She leads contemplative retreats on prayer, meditation and using writing in prayer and spiritual formation. Jane is author of One Day I Wrote Back.
Hilda R. Davis believes women are sacred beings, beloved of God, who deserve healthy lives full of joy and purpose. As an integrative health therapist, coach and counselor, she aims to be a guide on the wellness journey for all women. She uses art, meditation, storytelling and music as therapy tools. Hilda is the author of Live Healthy and Be Well.
Linda Furtado is a woman on a mission to express her creativity in daily life through writing, photography, music and art. She is a wife, mother and seminary student. Linda is on staff at The Upper Room.
J. Dana Trent graduated from Duke Divinity School and has worked in higher education administration, nonprofit fundraising and hospital chaplaincy. She is now a full-time writer, speaker and teacher. She is the author of Saffron Cross and an upcoming book on keeping the sabbath.
Kristen E. Vincent is a retreat leader and author of A Bead and a Prayer: A Beginners Guide to Protestant Prayer Beads and two related prayer bead books. She is a graduate of Duke Divinity School and The Upper Room’s Academy for Spiritual Formation.
Bishop Gregory Palmer is a long time friend of and traveler with EO Tours. He is a dynamic and engaging speaker that will inspire you in your Christian walk. He has served in United Methodist congregations and Conference appointments from Iowa to North Carolina. He was president of the General Board of Higher Education and from 2008-2010 was president of the Council of Bishops of The United Methodist Church. Since 2012 he has led the Ohio West Area of The United Methodist Church. He has been married to Cynthia for over 40 years and they have 2 children. They enjoy cruising and look forward to being with us on the Celebration Cruise.
The Rev. Dr. Luis León, since 1994, has been the Rector of St. John’s Church, Lafayette Square, in Washington, D.C. – “The Church of the Presidents”.
A native of Cuba, he chairs the Episcopal Church General Convention’s Task Force on the Church of Cuba.
After being baptized into the Episcopal Church in Guantanamo, Cuba, Luis came to the United States in 1961 at the age of 11 as part of the “Peter Pan” flights out of Cuba and was supported by the Episcopal Church of Miami.
He has earned degrees from the University of the South: Sewanee and Virginia Theological Seminary. Luis received an honorary Doctor of Divinity degree from the University of the South.
He has served parishes in NC, NJ, DE, and DC. Luis is a founding member of the Washington Interfaith Network and Wilmington, DE Interfaith Network. His specialty is building inner city parishes through spiritual leadership, preaching, excellence in worship and liturgical music, stewardship and outreach that involves parish members in the community. Luis is a frequent teacher and speaker for schools and events. In 2005 and 2013 he offered the invocation at the inauguration of the President of the United States.
Lu Stanton León, Luis’s wife, has worked more than 30 years as an editor, writer and media relations consultant for a variety of publications and businesses. She is currently with Canticle Communication. In addition, Lu has been involved in strategic planning and communications for outreach initiatives of the Episcopal Diocese of Washington and social service agencies in the Washington metropolitan area.
Paul is an accomplished vocalist and pianist. He has performed on some of the biggest stages in the world in opera, Broadway and Christian music. His passion is leading people in worship. He has served in churches since the age of 13 and is currently Director of Music Ministries at Centenary United Methodist Church in New Bern, NC. He also leads worship for special events and performs concerts around the country.
Bob is the Director for Wittenberg English Ministry in Germany. Bob served twice as a WEM volunteer pastor and has a love and commitment to the mission and ministry of WEM. He has served Lutheran congregations in Minnesota, Florida, Arizona and Frankfurt, Germany.
The Very Reverend Justin Lindstrom is the Dean of St. Paul's Catheral in Oklahoma City and President of the Board of the Oklahoma Conference of Churches. He has been a priest for 18 years and is a gifted pastor, community leader and dynamic preacher and teacher. Justin is married to Susan. They have 2 children and love to travel. Justin will speak on the meaning of Paul's Missionary Journeys for our Present Day Faith Journeys.
Peter was Professor of Biblical Studies at Trinity School for Ministry (near Pittsburgh). He is ordained in the Church of England and served a parish in England before teaching for many years at Wycliffe Hall in the University of Oxford. Peter is author of In the Steps of Saint Paul and many other books. He has led many study tours of Biblical sites in the Holy Land and around the Mediterranean.
Phil is a scholar, storyteller, speaker, and Associate Pastor of Grace Lutheran Church in Eau Claire, WI. He taught at Texas Lutheran University for eighteen years as a professor of theology, winning awards for excellence in teaching. His primary research interest revolves around performing large sections of Scriptures by heart. He has performed the Gospel of Mark in the United States, Latin America, and Europe. He is the author of The Word of the Cross in a World of Glory and coeditor of a volume entitled, The Bible in Ancient and Modern Media.
Jaime is Professor of New Testament, Altshuler Distinguished Teaching Professor at Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist University. She speaks and writes widely for academic and popular audiences including contributions to Feasting on the Word, Disciple Bible Study, Covenant Bible Study and is the on the Editorial Board for The CEB Women’s Bible. Jaime is an ordained American Baptist minister and has served parish and hospice settings.
Rev. Dr. Gregory Seltz is the Executive Director of the Lutheran Center for Religious Liberty in Washington, DC. Previously, he was the Speaker of The Lutheran Hour radio program with over 1 million listeners across North America. He has also served at Concordia University Irvine, Life's Journey Ministries and in congregations in New York city, Dallas and Tampa.
Fr. Alexander Bradshaw is a retired priest from Rochester, NY. Before being called to be a priest, Father Bradshaw was a Barrister in London, England and then practiced law in Rochester, NY. He has degrees from Gregorian University in Rome, Italy. After ordination he served parishes in Kenya and New York state. He is in retirement at St. John of Rochester Parish and frequently leads groups on international pilgrimages and tours.
Matt Miofsky is the Lead Pastor of The Gathering in St. Louis, Missouri. Since he started the church ten years ago, it has grown into a multi‐site ministry with four sites spread out across the city and over 1500 in weekly attendance. Matt is a graduate of Washington University in St. Louis and Emory University in Atlanta. Matt is passionate about church planting, especially in the context of multi‐site ministry. He is the author of Happy? What It Is and How to Find It and Fail: What to Do When Things Go Wrong.
David Alexander has served as a Pastor in the Mansfield community since 2005. After serving in various leadership roles, he was appointed as the Senior Pastor of First Methodist Mansfield in January of 2015. David has described his passion and understanding of his pastoral ministry in this way. "I believe that following Jesus is the best way to live. My life and my work is about helping people follow Jesus.” David is also the author of the book The Deep End, which focuses on the deep questions of the Christian faith; a book he describes as being for anyone who has ever felt like "the process of finding faith sometimes feels like you are losing faith.” If you would like to read more of David’s writings, you can find those at www.pastordavidalexander.com.
Mark is recently retired. He served more than 40 years as an editor and publisher at Standard Publishing, most recently with Christian Standard Magazine.
Phillip Gungor is an international marriage speaker as well as the Chief Operating Officer of Laugh Your Way America. Over the past 13 years Phil has worked with his father, Mark Gungor, to inspire and strengthen thousands of marriages and families all around the world.
Phil is on a mission to help married couples learn how to succeed. He believes the key to finding that success is by learning how to do the “right” things in your marriage. With truth and humor approach Phil uses comedy as well as unforgettable illustrations to teach proven principles that are guaranteed to strengthen any marriage.
In addition to working for Laugh Your Way America Phil is an associate pastor and board member of Celebration Church located in Wisconsin. Phil has been married to his wife Kirsty for 16 years, and they have four children ranging from three years old to eleven.
Born in Illinois, my father was an Episcopal priest; my mother, a registered nurse. After a brief move to Connecticut in the mid 60’s, our family relocated to Jackson, MS. Growing up I was very active in the Church and at Gray Center, the Mississippi diocesan camp and conference center. I graduated with a BA from Millsaps College in Jackson in 1981 and left that summer for my priestly and academic formation at Virginia Theological Seminary.
In June 1984, I was ordained to the diaconate and sent to St. John’s Episcopal Church in Pascagoula, Mississippi where I would serve first as curate and then as interim rector. In 1988, Dixon Myers and I married and I returned with him to Jackson and worked for both the Chapel of the Cross in Madison, MS and as chaplain at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Day School.
In 1989, we moved to Sewanee and the University of the South where I had accepted their call to serve as associate University Chaplain, a role I held for nearly a quarter of a century before moving ‘across the street’ to the School of Theology to become their first associate dean for recruiting and admissions.
Dixon and I have two grown children who both currently live in California. My vocational passions are liturgy, Christian Education, and pastoral care. Along side all of this, I am keenly fond of dabbling in the arts: in particular calligraphy, fiber art, watercolor, and sewing.
Rev. Dr. Gary Mason is a Methodist minister and directs a conflict organisation based in Belfast called "Rethinking Conflict." Prior to this, he spent 27 years as a Methodist clergy person in parish ministry in Belfast and has played an integral role in the Northern Irish peace process. He had a key role in establishing the Skainos project which is a world class urban centre developed in a post conflict society as a model of co-existence and shared space. It is acknowledged as the largest faith-based redevelopment project in Western Europe. Mason is a close advisor to Protestant ex-combatants on the civilianisation efforts of paramilitaries. He was instrumental in facilitating negotiations with paramilitaries and government officials in Northern Ireland, and in 2007 his contribution was formally recognised by the Queen.
In 2009, Mason’s church was the stage from which Loyalist paramilitaries announced their weapons decommissioning. Mason has lectured in political and academic forums throughout Europe, South Africa, the Middle East and the U.S.A. on lessons from the Irish peace process. He has been interviewed on CNN, BBC, ITV and various radio programs. He holds a PhD in Psychology from the University of Ulster, completed his theological studies at Queens University and has a Bachelor’s in Business Studies from the University of Ulster. Gary is a Senior Research Fellow at the Kennedy Institute for Conflict Intervention at Maynooth University in Ireland. He is an Adjunct Professor at the Candler School of Theology at Emory University in Atlanta, lecturing on reconciliation, peace building and the history of the Northern Ireland conflict, racism, sectarianism and conflict transformation.
Deb is a sought-after international speaker for women’s events and leadership workshops. She has a passion for sharing Christ’s love and engaging women in God’s word. She is the author of several books including the best-seller Living a Chocolate Life and her newest Sip, Savor, & Drink Deeply. Deb is a follower of Jesus, a wife, and a mom. Her blog is Fragrant Offerings.
Connie is a family life educator as well as a Visual Faith Coach learning to be a Digital Missioner. Her blog is Vintage Grace. She seeks to live life as prayer and loves beauty in the sacred space of home. She is encourager to John – a church executive, 3 daughters & spouses and Gigi to 4 grandsons.
Wendysue is a full time traveling musician. She has been singing professionally for 20 years, leading worship for churches, retreats, and conferences, and singing the national anthem for public events like Milwaukee Brewers baseball. She is bold about sharing her faith anywhere with anyone, and enjoys ministering to women. Wendysue loves Jesus, bible study, coffee, and exercise; is the happy wife of 20+ years to Craig, and a chaotically blessed mom of 2 teens.
Pat enjoys writing, drawing, and “imagining” to inspire others in their walk with Jesus. She currently plans and presents at retreats and women’s events plus teaches about Visual Faith in the Great Lakes area. Some of Pat’s art will be included in the upcoming The Enduring Word Bible from CPH. She and her husband David – a church executive have 4 children, 2 sons-in-love and 2 grandchildren.
Adam Hamilton is senior pastor of The United Methodist Church of the Resurrection in Leawood, Kansas, one of the fastest growing, most highly visible churches in the country. The Church Report named Hamilton’s congregation the most influential mainline church in America and PBS’s Religion and Ethics Newsweekly identified him as one of the “Ten People to Watch.” In 2013, Adam was invited to deliver the sermon at the National Prayer Service in Washington’s National Cathedral as part of the presidential inauguration festivities. A master at explaining questions of faith in a down-to earth fashion, he is the author of many booksThe Journey, The Way, 24 Hours that Changed the World, Enough, Why: Making Sense of God’s Will, When Christians Get it Wrong, and Seeing Gray in a World of Black and White, all published by Abingdon Press.
Adam has been married 30 years to LaVon. They have two grown daughters.
Dr. Maier is The Russell H. Seibert Professor of Ancient History at Western Michigan University and a much-published author of both scholarly and popular works. His novels include two historical documentaries: Pontius Pilate and The Flames of Rome, as well as a theological thriller that became #1 national bestseller in religious fiction: A Skeleton in God's Closet. A sequel, More Than a Skeleton, appeared in 2003 and The Constantine Codex in 2011. His non-fiction works include In the Fullness of Time, a book that correlates secular evidence from the ancient world impinging on Jesus and early Christianity; Josephus - The Essential Works, a new translation/commentary on writings of the first-century Jewish historian; and Eusebius -- The Church History, a similar book on the first Christian historian. More than five million Maier books are now in print in twenty languages, as well as over 250 scholarly articles and reviews in professional journals. Dr. Maier lectures widely, appears frequently in national radio, television, and newspaper interviews, and has received numerous awards. He has also penned seven children's books, and produced four four-hour video series dealing with Jesus, St. Paul, the early church, and current Christianity.
Joan, a member of the Benedictine Sisters, Erie, PA, and executive director of Benetvision, has been a passionate advocate for peace, human rights, women’s issues and church renewal for over 40 years. She is a best-selling and award-winning author and a noted international lecturer. She writes for the National Catholic Reporter and Huffington Post and has been a guest on radio and TV programs including Meet the Press, 60 Minutes, Now with Bill Moyers and many others.
Dr. Dunnam Served as the World Editor for the Upper Room for many years. He is the former Senior Pastor of Christ United Methodist Church in Memphis, TN. He is an au- thor of several dozen books and a highly sought after speaker.
Bishop Larry M. Goodpaster serves as resident bishop for the Western North Carolina Conference (Charlotte, NC) of The United Methodist Church. He has taught in a variety of settings and published in various denominational publications. His book, "There's Power in the Connection," was published in 2008 by Abingdon Press. From 2010 through 2012, Goodpaster served as president of The United Methodist Church’s Council of Bishops. Goodpaster earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Millsaps College, Jackson, MS and both Master of Divinity and Doctor of Ministry degrees from Candler School of Theology, Atlanta, Ga. He has also received honorary degrees (Doctor of Divinity) from Birmingham-Southern College (Birmingham, AL), Huntingdon College (Montgomery, AL), and Millsaps College (Jackson, MS).
Dr. deSilva is the Trustees’ Distinguished Professor of New Testament and Greek at Ashland Theological Seminary. He has published over twenty-five books, including "Honor, Patronage, Kinship and Purity: Unlocking the New Testament," "Unholy Allegiances: Heeding Revelation's Warning," and "Transformation: The Heart of Paul's Gospel." He has also contributed articles to numerous journals, reference works, and study Bibles. As a popular speaker on several EO cruises, he has taken on the complex subject of the book of Revelation and received high praise.
Mike Slaughter, lead pastor at Ginghamsburg Church, is the three-decade dreamer of Ginghamsburg and the spiritual entrepreneur of ministry innovations. His lifelong passion to reach the lost and set the oppressed free has now made him a tireless and leading advocate for the children, women and men of Darfur, Sudan. Mike’s call to afflict the comfortable and comfort the afflicted will challenge attendees to wrestle with God and their God-destinies.
In 2007, The Church Report listed Mike as one of the top 50 most influential Christians in America. As a mentor, Mike travels globally to speak and use his “gift of irritation” to equip ministry leaders to minimize brick and maximize mission so that they may fully deploy the mission of Jesus into the world. He was named the Foundation for Evangelism’s “Distinguished Evangelist” in 2003 and has twice received the Denman Evangelism Award in recognition of demonstrated leadership in promoting the United Methodist Church’s historic commitment to evangelism. In 2007, Olivet Nazarene University granted Mike the Reed Institute Lifetime Achievement Award, given in recognition of outstanding leadership.
Bishop Willimon is the most read author among United Methodist pastors. He is a Professor at Duke Divinity School and former Dean at Duke Chapel. His works include books on the Methodist Reformation, Revitalization of the Local Church, Evangelism of young adults and missions.
Monte Luker is Professor of Hebrew Scriptures in the School of Theology of Lenoir-Rhyne University at Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary. He has lived, studied, and taught in the Holy Land for the past 30 years. In addition to the Land, his primary interests are in the literary and theological analysis of Scripture, and he has contributed numerous articles to Mercer Dictionary of the Bible, Anchor Bible Dictionary, New Interpreter’s Dictionary of the Bible, as well as scholarly and church-related journals.
Dr. Luker’s books include Doom and Hope in Micah; Passion, Vitality, and Foment: The Dynamics of Second Temple Judaism; and An Illustrated Guide to the Holy Land For Tour Groups, Students, and Pilgrims (Abing- don, fall 2013 see www.AbingdonAcademic.com/HolyLand). Dr. Luker has been Adjunct Professor of Bible at the Jerusalem Center for Biblical Studies since 1997. He is a member of the Society of Biblical Literature, the American Schools of Oriental Research, the Biblical Archaeology Society, and the National Association of Professors of Hebrew.
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