Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Welcoming a U.S. professor

Greetings again as we are moving through the season of Lent. We have been joined here at the seminary by Dr. Walter Taylor, who has taught New Testament students at Trinity Lutheran Seminary in Columbus, Ohio for many years. He is pictured to the right with four of the five students in his class on "Early Christian Piety". His course complements the course of our Dutch scholar, Willem deWit in Advanced Greek, and the one I am teaching in Christianity from its beginnings to the coming of Islam. He will be with us until the middle of May, and will be joined by his wife and one of their daughters for some touring in Egypt during the Easter break.

This exchange of professors from the U.S. is being encouraged so that intercultural contracts can add to the broadening of our horizons in this global age. If you or someone you know would like to be considered for this type of teaching experience in the future, you can contact our regional representative who now lives in Cairo with his family ( If you know of someone who would be interested in pursuing the position of Director of Graduate Studies at ETSC, our Global Mission Division Division is still looking for my replacement. I made it clear when I came for this second year that I would not continue after June of 2009. This is an opportunity for a church historian or scholar in Muslim-Christian relations to teach, administer the graduate program of about 12 students, and experience the rich cultural and intellectual environment in the Middle East.

The second picture is of the library staff here at ETSC. They are a dedicated group which supervises the extensive collection of books in Arabic and in English, which has been built up in the more than 150 years the seminary has been in existence. A modest budget allows us to add to the resources for the students and faculty each year, and we also subscribe to an international web service called ATLA, which allows for the review of current journal articles and books. The seminary uses this service because it is a better way to keep current than incurring the expenses of a large number of journals and periodicals subscriptions.

The woman next to Dr. Taylor has invited me to the house of her family before, and plans to have us visit some Sunday when we can participate in her husband's church service.
Our second year students were also able to get books brought with visiting groups from the United States and the seminary does all it can to equip its students with books and other resources while they are studying here, and as they go forth to serve in the many parish opportunities throughout Egypt and other lands of the Middle East. If you have questions or comments about this you can write me, including of ways that you might support the seminary and its students beyond what the ELCA is presenting doing.

Yours in Christ, Roger Rogahn

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