BACHELOR OF ARTS DEGREE PROGRAM
THE DEPARTMENT OF RELIGIOUS STUDIES
The Department of Religious Studies serves students preparing for ministry as well as students who simply want to learn more about the world of religion. We focus especially on faith in an urban context, and our classes draw upon the insights of of traditional scholarship as well as the African American spiritual and intellectual tradition.
Our faculty is comprised of women and men with both strong academic and ministerial backgrounds, and we seek to serve both our students and churches.
Most of our classes are related to religious studies as a discipline, but we also have practical courses designed to prepare students for service in churches. Whether inside or outside the church, our department strives to prepare students to be agents of change!
We welcome questions about our program. Feel free to contact our department chair email@example.com . We would be honored to have you come visit our campus and would welcome you to sit in on a class or meet with a professor.
THE CHAIR OF RELIGIOUS STUDIES
The chair of our department is Dr. Chris Caldwell, who served as a pastor for twenty-five years before joining the Simmons faculty full-time in 2017. He holds degrees from Rhodes College (BA), Southern Seminary (MDiv), and Baylor University (PhD). His doctoral dissertation was, The Marcan Passion Narrative in Light of its Interpretation by Latin American Readers, and he has published reviews and articles mostly focused on the intersection of the Black Church and predominantly white churches. He was a founding pastor of Empower West, a coalition of churches which came together, under African American leadership, to work together to address issues of injustice in West Louisville.
Dr. Chris Caldwell
The Mission of the Department of Religious Studies:
- To teach students introductory and advanced courses in religion;
- To educate current and future church and community leaders who desire specialized theological training;
- To provide local, regional, and national African American churches and pastors with educational training, leadership development, ministerial resources, and critical conversations about the past, present, and future of ministry in the black church;
- To serve in an advisory role to pastors and churches on major religious, theological, and social issues confronting congregations and to facilitate The development of effective models of preaching, teaching, leadership, and ministry.
SPRING 2019 ACADEMIC CALENDAR SEMESTER