Rich Brown is publisher of Isaac’s Press, which he founded to produce progressive Christian curriculum for Community of Christ and beyond. A former newspaper reporter with a B.J. degree from the University of Missouri School of Journalism, Rich studied at Vancouver School of Theology before eventually earning a M.A. degree in religion from Park University. After 23 years at Herald Publishing House and Community of Christ headquarters (the last three as Herald editor), he accepted early retirement in mid-2009 after his job was eliminated because of budget cuts. Rich authored a half dozen Herald House books. His latest book is Speak to the Bones: How to Be a Prophetic People in a Time of Exile (available in print and e-book on Amazon. His first book, What Was Paul Thinking?, is available on Amazon. He also offers reflections on weekly lectionary scriptures at his blog, ForeWords. He and his wife Sally live in Blue Springs, Missouri. Their son, daughter, son-in-law, and granddaughter live in the Denver area.

Kevin Bryant lives in Nauvoo, Illinois with his wife, Katie. They met through the Community of Christ “Liahona” (college) group at the University of Central Missouri, where they both graduated. Both work at the Joseph Smith Historic Site while Kevin finishes his MA in American History at Western Illinois University.

Seth Bryant is an eighth-generation Latter Day Saint, who converted to Community of Christ from the LDS Church. The oldest of two children, Seth was born in Salt Lake City, Utah, to Dan and Sue Bryant; he spent his adolescence living near the mouth of Little Cottonwood Canyon, where fishing and trails were more tempting than classes. He and his wife Jennifer met while they were serving LDS missions in Raleigh, North Carolina. Unlocking their hearts (upon returning home), they were married in 2003 and have two children, Lincoln (5) and Ella Rebekah (2). Starting in the fall of 2009, Seth will enter a PhD program in historical studies in religion at Vanderbilt; he has an M.A. degree in religion from the University of Florida, a B.A. degree in English from Westminster College in Salt Lake City, and is a veteran of the U.S. Armed Forces. Seth enjoys fishing, hiking, grilling up “mean steaks,” and spending time with his family.

Jeff Cimmino converted to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints several years ago. He is a high school student from New England, and enjoys studying early American history, especially as it pertains to the early Restoration movement. After struggling with his faith, he no longer considers himself an orthodox member of the LDS church. If anyone wants to have lengthy discussions about Lacanian theory or radical theology, his schedule will open. He recently came into contact with the Community of Christ, and greatly appreciates their openness to challenging inquiry and the diversity of views found within this single expression of the Latter Day movement.

David Donoghue is a lifelong member of Community of Christ with a deep appreciation for church heritage and tradition who is also passionate about the church truly becoming a 21st century expression of the Latter Day Restoration movement and of Christianity in general (one of his favorite expressions being “we need balance”). An elder, David currently serves as a co-pastor in Canada.

Matt Frizzell is married to Margo, a father of two, and lives in Lamoni, Iowa. Matt holds a PhD in Theology and Ethics from Chicago Theological Seminary and currently is a Community of Christ appointee serving as campus minister at Graceland University. He loves the band Journey, U2, as well as fair-trade coffee (decaf), motorcycles, and the smell of campfires.

John Hamer is outreach coordinator for the downtown Toronto congregation of Community of Christ. He is a map-maker and historian whose work illustrates dozens of church history books and journal articles, including Mark A. Scherer’s The Journey of a People. John is co-author of Community of Christ: An Illustrated History and co-editor of Scattering of the Saints: Schism within Mormonism. John was the co-founder of John Whitmer Books, a non-profit press specializing in the history of the Latter Day Saint movement and is a past president of the John Whitmer Historical Association. John is actively engaged in Community of Christ’s Latter-day Seekers ministry and regularly teaches courses on Community of Christ scripture and history for the Discipleship Now ministry.

David Howlett is a sixth generation member of the Community of Christ as well as a convert to the church. Baptized at age eight in the RLDS church, he came of age in the fundamentalist Restoration Branches movement (a separatist RLDS movement) where he learned to love the heritage of his faith. In his mid 20s, he joined the Community of Christ and currently attends the Iowa City, Iowa congregation. David holds a master of arts in history from the University of Missouri-Kansas City and is a PhD candidate in the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Iowa. He specializes in American religious history. Currently, he is writing a dissertation on Kirtland Temple as a site of contested pilgrimage in the late twentieth century. David is a board member for the John Whitmer Historical Association. In fleeting moments of spare time, he enjoys recreational reading, playing the piano, cooking, playing online Scrabble, and consuming Mountain Dew.

Shannon McAdam thinks of herself as a theological entrepreneur. With a Master of Divinity degree from the Vancouver School of Theology and a Master of Theology (in preparation for a PhD) on-the-go, Shannon can be found flexing her theological and pastoral muscles in various
environments from the concierge desk of an Apple retail store to the classrooms of the Community of Christ Seminary. Shannon is currently pastor of the Vancouver, Canada Community of Christ congregation, and has also taught in congregations of other denominations around her home in beautiful Vancouver. Shannon’s passion is for contemporary, constructive theologies that help people answer the question “how then shall we live?” In her treasured spare time Shannon loves to cook up wonderful things with local organic produce, drink good beer, crochet up a storm, compete at online scrabble (often with David!) and play with her friends – in the kitchen, at the beach, or wherever!

Rene Romig (posting as truthiana) is currently working at the Joseph Smith Historic Site giving tours and working on development for a new museum space for the Visitor Center. Originally from Independence, Missouri, she graduated from Rice University in December 2008 with a degree in sociology. During her undergraduate years, she spent two summers guiding at the Kirtland Temple and a year abroad in Bolivia and Peru. She is interested in the sociology of religion, Spanish, and museum studies.

Barbara Walden is the site coordinator at the Kirtland Temple, a National Historic Landmark and the first temple built by Joseph Smith and his followers. She learned her first lessons in church history from a small Community of Christ congregation that gathered in a three-car garage in her hometown of Ridgecrest, California. Years later, she received her BA in history from Graceland University and a master’s degree in museum studies from the Cooperstown Graduate Program. Although often reminiscing over the warm winters of southern California, Barb and her husband, Jody, have called Kirtland home since 2002.

Andrew Webber is a very recent convert to Community of Christ. Andrew is a second generation Latter Day Saint. Andrew’s foundation of faith was formed in the LDS church. Andrew earned his BA in history and political science from Grandview University. Andrew is married to his wife Brenda and they have two boys Chris (5) and David (2). Andrew and his family call Cedar Rapids, IA home.


3 comments on “Columnists

  1. Margie Miller says:

    Wow! I am certainly in well educated and well rounded company!

  2. Richard Ditewig says:

    Can anyone supply with biographical information on hymn writer
    Carrie Church Thomas?

  3. David Nunn says:

    Who should I contact to use an article that appeared in one of your issues?

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