New Associate Dean for Worship Life Appointed at Columbia Seminary

New Associate Dean for Worship Life Appointed at Columbia Seminary

Columbia Theological Seminary President Leanne Van Dyk announced earlier this year the creation of a new position, Associate Dean for Worship Life. “We are committed to forming our students as leaders in worshipping communities,” said Dr. Van Dyk. “After all, worship is a primary location of the work of the Spirit. Our faculty is eager to welcome a colleague who will mentor our students in thoughtful and authentic worship.”

This summer, Columbia Seminary welcomed Dr. Rebecca Spurrier as the new Associate Dean for Worship Life and Assistant Professor of Worship. The Board of Trustees approved the recommendation of the search committee and President Van Dyk. Interim Dean of the Faculty and Vice President for Academic Affairs Christine Roy Yoder stated, “Worship is central and vital to the Columbia Seminary community. We are delighted that Dr. Spurrier is here, and look forward very much to her leadership.”

“Already, my vision for worship is emerging from Columbia Seminary’s life together,” stated Dr. Rebecca Spurrier. “I look forward to engaging the diverse reflections on what it means to be a community encountering God as we pray and learn together.”

Dr. Spurrier is a recent Ph.D. graduate from Emory University in Theological Studies. She also holds an M.Div. from Emory University’s Candler School of Theology and a B.A. from Calvin College. Dr. Spurrier’s interests include a theology and practice of public worship that reflects the beauty and tension human difference brings to Christian liturgy. Engaging ethnographic theology, disability studies, and liturgical aesthetics, her research explores the hope of human interdependence and the importance of liturgical access for ecclesial practice and Christian community.

Columbia Theological Seminary is “Cultivating faithful leaders for God’s changing world.” As an educational institution of the Presbyterian Church (USA), Columbia Seminary is a community of theological inquiry and formation for ministry in the service of the Church of Jesus Christ. Columbia offers six graduate degree programs and dozens of courses and events as a resource for church professionals and lay people through The Center for Lifelong Learning. For more information, please visit

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