category: Recognition Dr. Steven R. Harmon, Ph.D. By Gardner-Webb University On April 1, 2020 Steve Harmon; Fall 2011. Associate Professor of Historical Theology, School of Divinity Dr. Harmon’s book Seeds of the Church: Towards an Ecumenical Baptist Ecclesiology, co-edited with Teun van der Leer, Henk Bakker, and Elizabeth Newman, was published by Cascade Books in December. Its point of departure is the response to the World Council of Churches convergence text The Church: Towards a Common Vision by the Baptist World Alliance, which Dr. Harmon drafted on behalf of the BWA and which serves as the first chapter of the book. The book will be the subject of a plenary session at which he will make a presentation at the Believers Church Conference at Shaw University in Raleigh on January 27. His article “Remembering the Theologian Who Became Pope” was published by Baptist News Global on December 31 (https://baptistnews.com/article/remembering-the-theologian-who-became-pope/), and his article “Interdependency without Imperialism: Neville Callam’s Ecumenical Contributions” will be published in the Journal of European Baptist Studies 23, no. 1 (2023). Previous Recognition December 2022 From December 8 through 17, Dr. Harmon was in Rome, Italy, serving as Co-Secretary for the Baptist-Catholic International Dialogue Joint Commission. On December 14, the commission had a private audience with Pope Francis, whom the commission presented with a copy of Dr. Harmon’s book Baptists, Catholics, and the Whole Church: Partners in the Pilgrimage to Unity. While in Rome, on December 9 he delivered the lecture “Baptist Catholicity: Its Importance to Baptists and the Whole Church” at the Waldensian Faculty of Theology and the lecture “What Do Baptists and Catholics Have in Common?” for the Lazio Association of Baptist Churches meeting at the Chiesa Cristiana Evangelical Battista Teatro Valle in Rome. His lecture for the Waldensian Faculty of Theology will be published in Italian translation as an article in a future issue of the Faculty’s theological journal Protestantesimo. Also while in Rome, on December 13 he co-led a virtual midweek Bible study along with a Baptist and a Catholic member of the dialogue joint commission for the Bethel Baptist Church in Kingston, Jamaica. Dr. Harmon was a featured guest for the North American Baptist Fellowship Scholars Collaboration video podcast episode “NABF Book Conversation—Sources of Light edited by Steven Harmon and Amy Chilton,” which released on December 9 (https://youtu.be/eYzX1tOR_uE). He was guest preacher for Grace Crossing Baptist Fellowship in Charlotte, North Carolina on November 27. June-July 2022 Dr. Harmon contributed the chapters on “Eucharist” and “Ministry” to the book Baptists Worldwide: Origins, Expansions, Emerging Realities, ed. Erich Geldbach (Eugene, Ore.: Cascade Books, 2022), 58-61 and 62-67. He completed his term of service as President of the National Association of Baptist Professors of Religion—Region at Large and delivered the organization’s presidential address, “Interdependence without Imperialism: Neville Callam’s Ecumenical Contributions,” during the College Theology Society Annual Convention on June 4. On June 5, he served as a member of a panel of Baptist and Eastern Orthodox theologians responding to presentations made during the Baptist-Orthodox Colloquium on Church and Society sponsored by the Baptist-Orthodox Theological Resource Group (an initiative of the Baptist World Alliance Commission on Baptist Doctrine and Christian Unity) and the Faculty of Theology of Sofia University and St. Trivelinus Theological Institute in Bulgaria. He presented a paper on “The Justice of Justification: The World Communion of Reformed Churches Rationale for Joining the Joint Declaration on the Doctrine of Justification” to a meeting of the Baptist World Alliance Commission on Baptist Doctrine and Christian Unity during the Baptist World Alliance Annual Gathering at Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama on July 12. On July 27, he served as the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship representative to the Consultation on Common Texts, an ecumenical consultation of liturgical scholars and representatives from 24 denominations in the United States and Canada responsible for curating the Revised Common Lectionary that specifies the biblical texts for preaching in Christian worship over a three-year cycle in common use by Christian churches worldwide. Dr. Harmon served a guest preacher in worship services at First Baptist Church in York, South Carolina on June 19 and at St. John’s Baptist Church in Charlotte on July 3; he began serving as pastor of Sunshine Church in Bostic, NC in August. March 2022 Dr. Harmon delivered the annual Baptist Heritage Lecture for the School of Theology at Campbellsville University in Campbellsville, Kentucky on March 17. His lecture “Baptist Ecumenical Trailblazers” was based on his research for a book addressing that theme currently in preparation. He also delivered the lecture “Ecclesial Peacemaking: A Cross-Bearing Practice for Lent and Beyond” on March 24 for the Lent Lecture series “The Things That Make for Peace” sponsored by the Centre for the Study of Bible and Violence at Bristol Baptist College in Bristol, U.K. Videos of the lectures in this series are uploaded to the Centre for the Study of Bible and Violence YouTube channel. January 2021 Dr. Harmon’s article “Praying for Unity with Catholics and the Whole Church” was published in Good Faith Media (January 21, 2021. He was the featured guest for the podcast episode “Baptists, Catholics, and the Whole Church: A Conversation with Steven Harmon” hosted by Nathan Smith, ecumenical officer for the Glenmary Home Missioners (a Catholic religious order with a vocation for seeking unity with other Christians) and produced in collaboration with New City Press for the Paths to Unity podcast series; it released January 18 in connection with the January 18-25 Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. Dr. Harmon was the guest lecturer for the McClendon Reading Group, an international group of theologians, ministers, and other interested persons formed early in the COVID-19 pandemic to meet virtually each month to discuss a chapter of the 3-volume Systematic Theology of Baptist theologian James Wm. McClendon, Jr. He served as Co-Secretary for the Baptist-Catholic International Ecumenical Dialogue Joint Commission that held a North American working group meeting at Duke University Divinity School in Durham, NC December 6-10 and also met virtually with other international members of the joint commission on December 6 and 10. Dr. Harmon served as guest minister for Sunshine Church in Bostic, NC for the Sundays in December. April 2020 Dr. Harmon’s article “Discerning the Mind of Christ’s Continuing Incarnation: Imagining Inter-contextual Practices of Local Church Theology,” co-authored with Amy L. Chilton of Wingate University, has been published in the current issue of American Baptist Quarterly (vol. 39, no. 1; pp. 20-34). April 2020 Dr. Harmon’s newest book Sources of Light: Resources for Baptist Churches Practicing Theology, co-edited with Amy L. Chilton and issued in the Perspectives on Baptist Identities series sponsored by the National Association of Baptist Professors of Religion, has been published by Mercer University Press. His article “The Healing of Memories in Bilateral Dialogues with Anabaptist (and Baptist) Participation” has been accepted for publication in a future issue of the Journal of Baptist Theology in Context. This summer his book chapter “Baptist Moral Discernment: Congregational Hearing and Weighing” will be published in Churches Engaging in Moral Discernment, vol. 1, ed. Myriam Wijlens and Vladimir Shmaliy (Geneva: World Council of Churches, 2020), and his chapter “Baptists, Bapto-Catholic Baptists, and the Christian Tradition” will be published in Baptists and the Christian Tradition: Towards and Evangelical Baptist Catholicity, ed. Matthew Y. Emerson, Christopher W. Morgan, and R. Lucas Stamps (Nashville: B&H Academic, 2020). November 2019 Dr. Harmon delivered the annual Carlyle Marney Lecture at Carson-Newman University in Jefferson City, Tennessee during the university’s weekly chapel service on October 31. The title of his lecture was “Claude Broach, Pastoral Ecumenical Activist: How a Southern Baptist Pastor Got Invited to Vatican II, Was Eulogized by an Abbott, and Influenced the Quest for Christian Unity.” He also served as the guest preacher for the 136th annual church anniversary homecoming service at Mount Pleasant Missionary Baptist Church in Gastonia on October 6. September 2019 Dr. Harmon concluded his term of service as President of the National Association of Baptist Professors of Religion for 2018-2019 during the NABPR Annual Meeting in Raleigh North Carolina, May 20-22. He was elected Second Vice President of the NABPR Region-at-Large for 2019-2020 during the NABPR Region-at-Large meeting held in conjunction with the annual convention of the College Theology Society at Holy Cross College at Notre Dame, South Bend, Indiana, May 30-June 2. He co-presented with Amy L. Chilton the paper “Discerning the Mind of Christ’s Continuing Incarnation: Imagining Inter-contextual Practices of Local Church Theology” at the American Baptist Churches USA Theologians Conference on the theme “Incarnation and Identity” in conjunction with the American Baptist Churches USA Biennial Mission Summit, Virginia Beach, Virginia, on June 20, 2019. During the Baptist International Conference on Theological Education on the theme “TogetHER: Re-imagining and Re-reading HERstory in the Church,” sponsored by the Baptist World Alliance in Nassau, The Bahamas, July 5-7, Dr. Harmon co-facilitated with Louise Kretzschmar (South Africa) and Amy L. Chilton (USA) a breakout session addressing the theme “Preparing Ministers to Serve the Whole Church”; Dr. Harmon, Dr. Kretzschmar, and Dr. Chilton had particular responsibility for facilitating the session for theologians on the theme, “Theologians: Re-Thinking Resources: Textbooks, Curriculum, Etc.” During the annual gathering of the BWA in Nassau, The Bahamas July 8-12, he presented the draft of the BWA response to the World Council of Churches Commission on Faith and Order convergence text The Church: Towards a Common Vision that the BWA Commission on Baptist Doctrine and Christian Unity had commissioned him to write on behalf of the BWA. Dr. Harmon was also appointed by the latter commission to a four-person committee charged with drafting a process document specifying rationales and guidelines for Baptist World Alliance participation in bilateral international ecumenical dialogues. His opinion commentary article “The root of our inability to end gun violence is spiritual, but not in the way many think” was published by Baptist News Global on August 5. On September 18, Dr. Harmon spoke on the theme “Baptists, the Whole Church, and God’s Future” at Southside Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama, and on September 19 he delivered a lecture at Samford University titled “’Souls on the Tree of Pain’: U2, Liberation Theology, Central American Refugees—and You, Too” sponsored by the Theta Alpha Kappa Honor Society of the Samford University Department of Biblical and Theological Studies. March 2019 Dr. Harmon has recently been invited to serve on two editorial boards: the board of the Journal of Baptist Theology in Context, a new journal with an international readership but based in Great Britain and sponsored by the University of St. Andrews in Scotland, and the board of the Centre for Baptist Studies in Oxford Publications series, a series of academic monographs and edited volumes sponsored by the Centre for Baptist Studies of Regent’s Park College of Oxford University. He also serves on the editorial board of the Pacific Journal of Baptist Research and is book review editor for Perspectives in Religious Studies, a journal sponsored by the National Association of Baptist Professors of Religion. On March 3, Dr. Harmon led Fernwood Baptist Church in Spartanburg, SC in a study on the theme “A Biblical Case for Hospitality and Inclusion.” January 2019 Dr. Harmon delivered the Presidential Address for the meeting of the National Association of Baptist Professors of Religion at the organization’s meeting in connection with the annual meetings of the American Academy of Religion and the Society of Biblical Literature in Denver, Colorado on November 17. His address, “Engaging James Wm. McClendon, Jr.’s Ecumenical Theology: Fifty Years after ‘What Is a Southern Baptist Ecumenism?”’,” will be published in a future issue of the journal Perspectives in Religious Studies. Dr. Harmon serves as Co-Secretary for the Baptist-Catholic International Joint Commission, which held its most recent ecumenical dialogue meeting December 9-15 in Rome, Italy, hosted at the Vatican by the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity. The members of the Joint Commission had a brief visit with Pope Francis following the papal general audience that week. EthicsDaily.com published a two-part series of his reflections on the Baptist-Catholic dialogue meeting: “How Baptists, Catholics Have Pursued Common Ground: Part 1“, and “How Baptists, Catholics Have Pursued Common Ground: Part 2”. He served as guest preacher in the Sunday morning worship service at Ross Grove Baptist Church in Shelby on January 13 and led a Christian formation study on “Baptist Identity, the Whole Church, and God’s Future” in connection with the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity at Peakland Baptist Church in Lynchburg, Virginia on January 20. Dr. Harmon has been invited to serve as the 2019 Carlyle Marney Lecturer at Carson-Newman University in Jefferson City, Tennessee in October 2019. October 2018 Dr. Harmon served as a keynote speaker for the Lilly Fellows Program in Humanities and the Arts National Conference on the theme “Robust and Receptive Ecumenism” at Hope College in Holland, Michigan, October 12-14. He presented an address titled “Receptive Ecumenism and the Reconstruction of Christian Identity in Christian Higher Education” and participated in a plenary panel discussion with two other keynote speakers for the conference. Dr. Harmon also had two journal articles published: “‘Quick to Listen, Slow to Speak’: The Promise of a Radical Baptist Way of Hearing,” Perspectives in Religious Studies 45, no. 3 (Fall 2018): 327-33, and “A Eucharistically-Malnourished Baptist’s Desire for Intercommunion,” Horizons: The Journal of the College Theology Society 45, no. 2 (2018): 25-28. 2012-2013 Dr. Harmon has been invited to serve as a member of the Contributing Editorial Board of the Pacific Journal of Baptist Research published by the New Zealand Baptist Research Society and the R. J. Thompson Centre for Theological Studies at Carey Baptist College, Auckland, New Zealand. The Associated Baptist Press has invited him to contribute a regular blog post column in the area of Theology to a new ABP News Blog that will launch on May 14. He was guest preacher for the Sunday morning worship service at Covenant Baptist Church in Gastonia on April 15 and was hosted by the Baptist House of Studies at Duke University Divinity School as the guest for a discussion of his book Towards Baptist Catholicity: Essays on Tradition and the Baptist Vision (Paternoster, 2006) by students in a course in Free Church Theology on April 20. 2011-2012 Dr. Harmon’s article “Qualitative Catholicity in the Ignatian Correspondence–and the New Testament: The Fallacies of a Restorationist Hermeneutic” was published in the journal Perspectives in Religious Studies vol. 38, no. 1 (Spring 2011), pp. 33-45. Dr. Harmon has contributed seven articles to the The Encyclopedia of Christian Civilization (4 vols.), ed. George Thomas Kurian (Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell, 2011): “Clement of Alexandria”; “Desert Fathers”; “Dogmatic Theology”; “Gregory of Nyssa”; “Liturgical Theology”; “Patristics”; and “Universalism.” His article “Christian Unity as Christ’s Victory, and Our Task” was published by Associated Baptist Press (January 11, 2012). He presented on the topic “Academic Witness Within the Church: ‘Excluding No Light from Any Source'” as a member of a panel on “Academic Witness to the Church” at the conference Christian Life & Witness: From the Academy to the Church, sponsored by the Center for Christian Discernment and Academic Leadership at Georgetown College in Georgetown, Kentucky, January 23-24. On January 22, he preached in the Sunday morning worship service at Lyndon Baptist Church in Louisville, Kentucky. He also led a workshop on grassroots ecumenical engagement based on his book Ecumenism Means You, Too: Ordinary Christians and the Quest for Christian Unity, sponsored by the Ecumenical Ministries Committee of Eastern Area Community Churches in Louisville, Kentucky. Finally, he preached the homily for the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity service sponsored by Eastern Area community Ministries in Louisville, Kentucky. 2010-2011 Dr. Harmon contributed the chapter “The Subjection of All Things in Christ: The Christocentric Universalism of Gregory of Nyssa (331/340-c. 395)” to “All Shall Be Well”: Explorations in Universal Salvation and Christian Theology, from Origen to Moltmann, ed. Gregory MacDonald (Eugene, Ore.: Cascade Books, 2011), pp. 47-65, which was published in January. His article “One Baptism”: A Study Text for Baptists” was published in Baptist World: A Magazine of the Baptist World Alliance 58, no. 1 (January/March 2011): 9-10. His article “The Baptist Passion for Christian Unity” was published in Baptists Today 29, no. 1 (January 2011): 25. His article “The Goal of Baptist-Catholic Dialogue” was published by Associated Baptist Press (December 22, 2010). He delivered the guest lecture “Ecumenical Theology and/as Systematic Theology” to the Theology and Ethics Seminar of the graduate program in theology at Durham University, Durham, U.K. on December 8. He served as a member of the Baptist delegation to the Baptist World Alliance/Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity joint international commission, which met at Regent’s Park College, Oxford University, Oxford, U.K. December 12-18. He has just completed an eight-week study on the theme “Spiritual–and Religious: The Faith That Forms the Faithful in Every Age” for the Genesis Class at First Baptist Church of Marion, North Carolina, from January 2 through February 20. Dr. Harmon has been invited to serve as one of two consultants (along with David S. Bebbington of Stirling University in Scotland) for the Young Scholars in the Baptist Academy seminar on “Baptists and History” July 26-30, 2011 in Prague, Czech Republic, where he will deliver one of the two keynote lectures on a topic related to current research. He served as a member of a three-person committee charged with selecting the recipient of the 2011 National Association of Baptist Professors of Religion Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship. He was also invited to serve as a panelist for a conference on “Christian Life and Witness: From the Academy to the Church” at Georgetown College in Georgetown, Kentucky, January 23-24, 2012. This is the inaugural event of the Center for Christian Discernment at Georgetown College. He has just completed leading an eight-week study on the theme “Spiritual–and Religious: The Faith That Forms the Faithful in Every Age” for the Genesis Class (a Sunday School class with an endowment to provide for guest teachers) at First Baptist Church of Marion, North Carolina (final session on February 20). He preached at First Baptist Church, Gaithersburg, Maryland on February 27. Steve Harmon; Fall 2011.