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Berry Concludes Tenure at Bethany

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Malinda Berry, assistant professor of theological studies and director of the MA program at Bethany Seminary, has announced that she is taking the position of assistant professor of theology and ethics at Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary (AMBS) in Elkhart, Indiana, effective July 1, 2014. As an active presence in Mennonite Church USA and a graduate of AMBS, Berry has an opportunity to contribute to her home denomination in this new position.

Berry began her tenure at Bethany in the fall of 2009, teaching a range of courses in theology and guiding MA students in research and the writing of theses. President Jeff Carter acknowledged her accomplishments during her time at the Seminary, including establishing a distance learning Connections track for the MA program and giving leadership to the strengthening of the MA curriculum during the Seminary’s recent curriculum review.

“Bethany will always have a special place in my heart because it’s where I had my first full-time teaching post,” said Berry. “Moreover, during these past several years, I have gained valuable experience teaching a rich array of courses in theological studies, learning about the changing face of theological education, and reflecting on big ideas like how to structure and assess a curriculum. I will take all of that with me. I also hope that thanks to the relationships I have formed with my colleagues here, there will be opportunity for Bethany and AMBS to work together as both schools remain denominationally rooted and grow ecumenical connections.”

Steven Schweitzer, academic dean, remarked on Berry’s “encouraging, inviting presence, marked by creativity and deep questions to her teaching. She has enabled our students to engage in thoughtful, careful theological reflection. In our recent curriculum review process, Malinda provided valuable insights that helped both of our degree programs to be flexible and focused, and better as a result. Malinda's time among us will continue to benefit Bethany, our students, and the church for years to come."

Jody Gunn
(MDiv Connections)

JodyIn the summer of 2006, I made a pact with a high school friend to make our fortieth decade significant. My goal was to complete my Master of Divinity degree before I turned fifty years old. Inside I asked myself and God, "How is this was going to be possible?" Eventually, I was willing to be open to it. My life seemed crazy enough without adding seminary to the mix. I am married to Eric and have two children 15 and 10, so I run a household. I serve a church half time and find many opportunities to volunteer in our community. In spite of the busyness of my life I said "Yes!" to Bethany because I really was at a point in my life where it made sense.