Yesterday I had the opportunity and honor to serve as an usher for Justin Irving’s presentation service at Bethel Seminary. Justin was interviewed, and approved for being a full professor last Spring by the Seminary Board of Directors. I was Justin’s Teaching Assistant in the Transformational Leadership Department last school year after a couple of years of TA’ing for the Preaching Department. The service was very well attended and was quite enjoyable. All the professors come robed in their doctoral gowns, as do the President of the University (George K. Brushaber) and the Provost of the Seminary (Leland V. Eliason). Samuel “Sammy” Wanyonyi and Jeffery Fritz read scripture (Psalm 96 and Philippians 2:1-11 respectively). Robert Alderman (InMinistry student) and Patty Kark (a friend of Justin’s family) led a wonderful time of worship where we sang “Sing to the King” “In Christ I stand” and “How great is our God”. We also sang “How Great Thou Art” later on following Justin’s presentation address.

Justin gave a speech titled “Rooted and Relevant: Compelling Leadership for Changing Times” where he talked about trends in servant leadership and engaging the postmodern culture through servant leadership. This was a small glimpse into his Ph.d dissertation.

Justin is a great addition to the professors at Bethel Seminary. He is bright, well spoken, well red, and most importantly sincerely and fully committed to Jesus Christ. I expect great things from Justin, and hopes he takes the mantel from other great leadership professors (Mark W. McCloskey for example) and pushes this area of the Seminary to grow and improve.

Justin has taught at both Northwestern College (Roseville, MN) and Bethel Seminary. He did his undergraduate work at Northwestern College (Psychology and Bible), his M.Div at Bethel Seminary (In New Testament with both Greek and Hebrew!), and his Ph.D at Regent University, Vancouver (in Organizational Leadership). His Ph.D dissertation examined the relationship between servant leadership and the effectiveness of teams.

Congrats Justin!

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