Press Releases

Teachers, scholars and leaders: Faculty add to a rich legacy of scholarship

A lot of great things are happening at Multnomah – new majors, new online degrees, new athletic programs – but one thing hasn’t changed: our commitment to providing an exceptional academic experience firmly rooted in God’s Word.

josberger_featureimageOur professors express this commitment by cultivating biblical wisdom in our students and publishing works that add depth and meaning to their respective fields. They’re experts in biblical exegesis, language and theological research – and they’re keenly aware of the complexities of modern society.

“Our faculty serve as thought leaders in their particular academic areas,” says Dr. Craig Williford, Multnomah’s president. “Their research, publications, speaking and teaching are all anchored in the authoritative word of God.”

Multnomah’s rich legacy of scholarship continues to this day. Current Multnomah faculty members have authored more than 20 books covering a wide array of topics. They include Al Bayliss, Derek Chinn, Brad Harper, Rebekah Josberger, Rick McKinley, Paul Louis Metzger and John Terveen.

“They know that God’s truth provides the proper foundation for all our academic explorations,” says Williford. “Combining their commitment to the Bible with being on the forefront of research provides the best quality educational experience for our students.”

Visit our faculty page to learn more.

Multnomah University adds track and field to the sports lineup

No Comments » Written on April 10th, 2015 by
Categories: Press Releases

PORTLAND, Ore. – The Multnomah University Athletic Department is excited to announce the addition of men’s and women’s track and field for the 2015-16 school year.

“We are so thankful for the support and encouragement that we have received from our administration as we continue to grow our athletic offerings here at MU,” Athletic Director Lois Vos said. “Adding track and field is a big step for MU, and we are blessed to have such an experienced and caring leader in Coach David Lee to get things started.”

As coach of both cross country teams, Lee led the Lions to an extremely successful inaugural season. The men’s team qualified for the NCCAA Division II national race, and Nathan Meeker became MU’s first individual national champion. Sindy Larson, meanwhile, also ran in the NCCAA Division II championships, becoming the first female athlete from MU to compete at the national level.

“Coaching at MU is a privilege, and the responsibility of starting programs from the-ground-up is especially joyous,” Coach Lee said. “Getting acquainted with new coaching partners as we share the anticipation of what God has planned for the Lions is a big part of my joy. Everywhere I recruit, the name Multnomah is well received because the school's administration, faculty and staff have held true to the earliest core values of the founders. I hope that our new athletic endeavors meld well with the spiritual heritage that is such a key part of MU and that we'll be recognized  for athletic excellence in the future.”

With the addition of the track and field squads, Multnomah now features 10 teams. Over the past year, MU Athletics has grown by leaps and bounds by adding six programs: men’s soccer, men’s and women’s cross country, women’s basketball, and men’s and women’s golf. The Lions have a distinguished history in men’s basketball and women’s volleyball.

Pending acceptance into the NAIA, all of the teams will compete in the Cascade Collegiate Conference during the 2015-16 season. The NAIA offers 23 different track and field events for student athletes. Madison and Portland Christian high schools have graciously given MU the go-ahead to use their facilities for training in the various track and field disciplines.

Kenya native and global development & justice student Max Olwa: ‘Living in this community is uplifting’

Max Olwa might be 9,000 miles from home, but he knows he’s in the right place at the right time.

“I came here from Kenya, but I feel like I’ve always been a part of this place,” says the MAGDJ student. “Living in this community is uplifting.” Read Max’s story.

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MU’s Torah unrolls new learning opportunities for community

Comments Off Written on February 6th, 2015 by
Categories: Events, Press Releases, Students

Thursday dawned wet and dreary, but it might as well have been Christmas for MU’s Hebrew department. As soon as people filed into the JCA Student Center that morning, they saw the reason: A 16th-century Torah scroll lay partially unfurled on stage, offering the crowd an enticing glimpse into the rich history of biblical transmission work.

MU president Dr. Craig Williford commenced the Torah Dedication Chapel by introducing the donors, Ken and Barbara Larson, who had flown in from Florida that morning.

“We can feel your enthusiasm in the air,” said Barbara Larson. “We’ve been impressed by your faculty and students, and we’re excited for what this Torah will do for the school.”

The scroll, which is durable enough to be used frequently for decades to come, will provide countless learning opportunities for MU students.

“We intend to use the scroll as an object of study in and of itself,” said Biblical Languages Chair and Hebrew professor Dr. Karl Kutz. “We can learn about scribal work, the transcription process and more.”

MacKenzie Williams and Chad Woodward are two students who will benefit from using the Torah, and they expressed their gratitude to the Larsons during the dedication.

“Thank you for this opportunity to grow as a Hebrew community,” said Williams. “This means a great deal to me.”

The gift means a great deal to Kutz as well.

“You can imagine I’ve been anticipating this moment for some time,” he told the crowd. The scroll, he said, represents many things: history, centuries of faithful copying, transmission work, and the enduring faith of God’s people. But most importantly, he noted, it represents an appeal. “This Torah is an invitation to a relationship with the living God…an invitation to me and you,” he said.

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Colloquium attendants encircled the room as the scroll was fully unfurled for the first time. View the full photo album on Facebook.

After the dedication chapel, the scroll was swaddled in cloth, tucked into a padded suitcase and transported to Bradley Hall for a colloquium with Ancient Manuscripts Expert Dr. Scott Carroll.

Four long tables, each draped with a black tablecloth, lined the stage. As the Torah was carefully unrolled, it crackled and popped, creating stiff waves along the tabletops.

The 89-foot scroll, Carroll said, was composed somewhere in Eastern Europe during the Reformation. Constructing the parchment for such a Torah is no small feat — the artifact is comprised of 50 calf skins.Vegetable components were used for ink and goose feathers for writing. It took a scribe an entire year to create the manuscript. 

“If this Torah could talk to us, imagine what it could say and what it’s seen,” said Carroll. “It was preserved through the Enlightenment and the Holocaust. Through a wonderful turn of Providence, it’s in your community now.”

Listeners were invited on stage to get a firsthand look. Some gently touched the scroll's edges — smooth on top, suede on bottom. Others bent over the relic, iPhones poised. A few scanned the impeccably centered lines of text, their eyes searching for familiar passages.

Carroll then asked everyone to encircle the room so the scroll could be completely unfurled, a scene you might witness in some synagogues during the Jewish festival Simchat Torah. Young and old, seasoned Hebrew scholars and novices alike held the Torah together. It was the first time the scroll had ever been fully unraveled.

Hebrew student Thomas Belcastro was euphoric. “It’s beautiful,” he said. “When I came to Multnomah, I didn’t expect I’d ever be holding a 600-year-old scroll. I actually get to study it on Monday.” 

Executive director and DCP alumna Gayle Fidanzo: ‘I wouldn’t be the leader I am without MU’

Comments Off Written on January 12th, 2015 by
Categories: Alumni, Press Releases, Students

When Gayle Fidanzo was offered a job at Christian Family Adoptions, she was reluctant to accept.

“We all want the desires of our heart — but I didn’t know my heart yet,” says the leadership and ministry major. The DCP graduate dreamed of taking risks, working overseas and rescuing women from slavery. “I thought an adoption agency would be boring,” she says.

It was quite the opposite. Read Gayle's story.

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Multnomah Biblical Seminary awarded national ‘Science for Seminaries’ grant

Comments Off Written on December 2nd, 2014 by
Categories: Press Releases

Update: PBS featured this grant in a recent national broadcast. Watch the video.

PORTLAND, Ore. − Multnomah Biblical Seminary is one of 10 seminaries nationwide selected by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) for a combined $1.5 million in grants to incorporate science into core theological curricula.

SeminaryGrant_mainThe grant will provide resources to integrate science into select core courses, such as systematic theology, biblical studies, church history and pastoral theology. The courses will be developed and implemented over the next two years and provide seminarians with solid, science-focused instruction.

“Many people look to their religious leaders for guidance on issues relating to science and technology, even though clergy members may get little exposure to science in their training,” said Jennifer Wiseman, director of the AAAS Dialogue on Science, Ethics, and Religion.

Dr. Paul Louis Metzger, MU seminary professor and director of its Institute for the Theology of Culture: New Wine, New Wineskins, said evangelical Christianity has often experienced a difficult relationship with the contemporary sciences. “Ironically, the evangelical movement has benefited greatly from implementing scientific and technological advances in communication and media for gospel proclamation,” he said.

MU educates countless pastors, whose churches draw people from diverse backgrounds and vocations, including the sciences. “Often these parishioners feel like they live in two universes: one of faith and one of science,” said Metzger, who serves as the project leader. “Through New Wine, New Wineskins’ oversight and coordination, this generous grant will make it possible for our seminary faculty to equip students in the integration of faith and science. Our students will be more effective as pastoral leaders in serving their members, their vocations and their communities in our scientific age.”

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About Multnomah University

Multnomah University is a fully accredited, private, non-denominational, Christian institution of higher education located in Portland, Oregon, with teaching sites in Reno, Nevada, and Seattle, Washington. Composed of a college, seminary, graduate school, degree completion program and online distance-learning program, Multnomah issues bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate degrees, as well as professional certifications and endorsements. For more information, visit multnomah.edu.

Couple donates 16th-century Torah to MU

Comments Off Written on September 4th, 2014 by
Categories: Press Releases

PORTLAND, Ore. — Ken and Barbara Larson, from Bonita Springs, Fla., are giving a rare and valuable Torah to Multnomah University.

scrollThe Torah is a parchment scroll on which the first five books of the Old Testament were written. The Larsons purchased several scrolls, all of which are hundreds of years old, in Israel.

Ancient Asset Investments, a brokerage firm dealing in rare biblical artifacts, is assisting the couple with the donation process. Todd Hillard, the firm’s owner, said the Larsons had a vision for placing the Torahs in leading seminaries. “The Larsons have a deep passion for seminary education,” he said. “They want history to influence future scholars.”

Vice President of Advancement Steve Cummings said the gift will further ignite students’ passion for God’s Word. “This is an incredible and generous gift,” he said. “It will bring an added dimension to their educational experience that will last for many years.”

Although the scroll is centuries old, Hillard said it’s durable enough to be used frequently for decades to come. “All Torahs are innately priceless,” he said. “This one is in perfect condition.” He added that the scroll — which is two feet tall and 89 feet long — was likely used in synagogues.

University President Dr. Craig Williford said the artifact will help sharpen students’ interpretation skills while enhancing their appreciation for the Bible’s reliability. “Having direct access to such an important historical copy of the Torah will enable them to connect to the rich heritage of biblical transmission and translation work,” he said.  “This will affirm their appreciation of the Scriptures as God’s inspired, authoritative word.”

The scroll’s formal dedication will be hosted on campus and is tentatively set for early February.

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About Multnomah University

Multnomah University is a fully accredited, private, non-denominational, Christian institution of higher education located in Portland, Oregon, with teaching sites in Reno, Nevada, and Seattle, Washington. Composed of a college, seminary, graduate school, degree completion program and online distance-learning program, Multnomah issues bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate degrees, as well as professional certifications and endorsements. For more information, visit multnomah.edu.

Steve Cummings joins MU as vice president of Advancement

Comments Off Written on August 4th, 2014 by
Categories: General, Press Releases

PORTLAND, Ore. — Steve Cummings has been selected as vice president of Multnomah University’s Advancement Department.

Read the rest of this entry »

Former Multnomah University President Dr. Dan Lockwood Dies at 65

Comments Off Written on July 10th, 2014 by
Categories: Dr. Lockwood, Press Releases

PORTLAND, Ore. — Dr. Daniel Lockwood, former president of Multnomah University, has passed away at age 65.

Lockwood died peacefully in his Portland home July 9. He was surrounded by family when he entered into the arms of Christ.

“We are all thankful for the way Dr. Dan invested his life in others as a dedicated follower of Christ, leader, teacher, encourager and humble servant,” said Dr. Craig Williford, Multnomah’s current president. “Serving others in the name of Christ was his passion and life commitment. He positively impacted our lives in numerous ways. We will miss him.”

Lockwood worked at Multnomah for more than 34 years. He taught theology for 11 years before serving seven years as seminary dean. In 1997, he became Multnomah’s fourth president. Throughout his time at MU, Lockwood continued to teach theology.

Due to health concerns related to cancer, he retired from the presidency November 1, 2013. He spent the past eight months in close connection with his family.

During Lockwood’s 16-year tenure as president, the University constructed seven buildings on its Portland campus, opened a campus in Reno, Nev., and launched a teaching site in Seattle, Wash. Eight graduate and seminary degree programs were created, and nine undergraduate majors were initiated. The Adult Degree Completion Program, which now provides three majors, was born in 2007. Multnomah was granted university status in 2008.

The Multnomah community mourns the loss of a gentle leader and an outstanding teacher. He leaves a legacy of theological integrity and unreserved faith in Christ.

Lockwood is survived by his wife of 41 years, Jani, and their daughter, Elise. A memorial service is scheduled for 2 p.m. Friday, July 25, at Lake Grove Presbyterian Church in Lake Oswego, Ore. All are invited to attend.

UPDATE: Listen to Dr. Dan's memorial service recording.

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About Multnomah University

Multnomah University is a fully accredited, private, non-denominational, Christian institution of higher education located in Portland, Oregon, with teaching sites in Reno, Nevada, and Seattle, Washington. Composed of a college, seminary, graduate school, degree completion program and online distance-learning program, Multnomah issues bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate degrees, as well as professional certifications and endorsements. For more information, visit multnomah.edu.

Cascade Collegiate Conference Approves MU’s Membership Application

Comments Off Written on June 19th, 2014 by
Categories: General, Press Releases

PORTLAND, Ore. —The Cascade Collegiate Conference approved Multnomah University’s membership application this week, moving the Lions one step closer toward conference participation during the 2015-16 season. Read the rest of this entry »