James Turrell Named Dean Of The School Of Theology

Thursday, May 7, 2020
Vice-Chancellor John McCardell announced the appointment of the Rev. Canon James F. Turrell, Ph.D., as dean of the School of Theology at the University of the South. Turrell is the current Norma and Olan Mills professor of divinity, professor of liturgy, associate dean for academic affairs and sub-dean of the Chapel of the Apostles. He will assume his new duties on July 1.
 
“I am delighted that Jim Turrell has accepted this appointment,” said Vice-Chancellor McCardell. “Not only is he well acquainted with the School of Theology and its mission, but he is also a respected scholar and participant in the life of the wider Church. I know that the Sewanee family will join me in welcoming Jim to his new duties with great enthusiasm.”
 
For the past 17 years, Rev.
Turrell has taught liturgy and the history of worship at the School of Theology and has served 11 years as associate dean for academic affairs. During his tenure, he led the School though a successful Association of Theological Schools re-accreditation in 2015, reorganized and streamlined academic policies, programs and procedures, and recently revised the core curriculum to increase and enhance contextual education. His work with the wider Church includes membership in the Standing Commission on Liturgy and Music since 2015 and in the Theology Committee of the House of Bishops since 2013.
 
“From my perspective as a member of the faculty, an administrator and a participant in the wider work of The Episcopal Church, the School of Theology is well positioned to thrive,” stated Rev. Turrell. “As an Episcopal seminary that is also embedded in a larger university, a unique commitment and accountability to both the Church and the academy distinguish the School, making it more than the sum of its parts. I am thrilled to accept this appointment as we look to the future.”

Rev. Turrell studied history as an undergraduate at Yale (B.A., 1991) before pursuing a divinity degree there (M.Div., 1996). He was ordained a priest in the Episcopal Diocese of Bethlehem (Pennsylvania) in 1996. After parish work, he studied history at Vanderbilt University (Ph.D., 2002), focusing on religion in early modern Britain. 

Rebecca Abts Wright, professor of Old Testament, senior faculty member and search committee member, has worked with Rev. Turrell as a fellow teacher and during his service as the academic dean. “The faculty has seen Jim’s academic life in the classroom and publications, his patient and pastoral character tending to administrative details and his depth of skill and love for liturgy. We trust his leadership in this time of pandemic change and look forward to what he will bring to the School when we emerge into whatever will be our new ‘normal.’ Jim is a person for whom ‘esteemed colleague’ is more than a polite title; it is a statement of our shared reality.”
 
The Rt. Rev. J. Neil Alexander, dean of the School of Theology since 2012, will step down from that position on June 30; however, he will return after a sabbatical period and resume teaching. He expressed that he couldn't be more pleased that the University has chosen Rev. Turrell to be the next dean. “As fellow scholars in the field of liturgy, I have known Jim for many years and I can vouch for his commitment to theological education and to the Church. Working alongside him during the last eight years, I can attest to the fact that he is eminently qualified to carry forward the mission of the School of Theology. I look forward to working with him as a member of the faculty in the years to come."

Steve Ellison: What Races?

Church Of Jesus Christ Of Latter-Day Saints Invites All To Come Unto Christ

Next Virtual Rhythm Session Is "Establish A Healthy Rhythm of Work and Rest During this Pandemic"


There is only one race of people: humans. The genetic difference between any two human beings is infinitesimally small. Reproduction occurs naturally across all ethnic groups. Skin color is a ... (click for more)

President Russell M. Nelson of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, issued a statement abhorring racism and reminding that "we are brothers and sisters, each of us the child of a ... (click for more)

The Chattanooga House of Prayer's next Rhythms Retreat, "Sabbath," will be held virtually on Saturday, June 13 from 9 a.m.-noon. “As life takes on a 'new normal' following this season of ... (click for more)



Church

Steve Ellison: What Races?

There is only one race of people: humans. The genetic difference between any two human beings is infinitesimally small. Reproduction occurs naturally across all ethnic groups. Skin color is a commonly used characteristic to claim differing races. Every human being’s skin color is the same, at least it is determined by the production of the same pigment by the same type of skin cells. ... (click for more)

Church Of Jesus Christ Of Latter-Day Saints Invites All To Come Unto Christ

President Russell M. Nelson of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, issued a statement abhorring racism and reminding that "we are brothers and sisters, each of us the child of a loving Father in Heaven. His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, invites all to come unto Him." President Nelson’s full statement – posted on Facebook and released to the world – is supported by ... (click for more)

Breaking News

Hamilton County Reports One-Day Record 106 New Coronavirus Cases; Deaths Remain At 19

The Hamilton County Health Department reported a one-day record 106 new cases of COVID-19 on Friday for a cumulative total of 1,381. Officials said, "While the majority of people are compliant with the Health Department’s isolation and quarantine instructions, there are an increasing number of people who are not staying home and not being cooperative. This behavior puts the ... (click for more)

Hamilton County Correctional Officer Tests Positive For Coronavirus; Silverdale Facility Employees, Inmates To Be Tested Wednesday

The Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office was notified Friday morning one of its Corrections Division employees has tested positive for COVID-19. Per Hamilton County Jail guidelines, the employee is at home under isolation order from the Hamilton County Health Department. Jail personnel are currently working with Health Department personnel to currently track all inmates and personnel ... (click for more)

Opinion

It's About Time Riverbend Was Cancelled - And Response

Since its inception, Friends of the Festival seemed bound and determined to make Riverbend a national event, ignoring the opinions of many Chattanoogans. Riverbend started as a local event drawing on the tastes and desires of local citizens yet has devolved into an outrageously expensive, super-crowded two-week-long free-for-all. Riverbend has drastically deviated from its original ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Rhea Migrants Vanish!

A promising online news website debuted last month from its statewide base in Nashville. Identifying itself as “Tennessee—Lookout,” the website has what appears to be sound leadership and creditable reporters. Its vow is that it hopes to become an “Independent non-profit news site dedicated to covering Tennessee government, policy and politics. Hard-hitting but fair.” I wish it ... (click for more)