Saturday, 7 January 2017

A part of the Epiphany celebrations
in Columbia Theological Seminary

‘The Adoration by the Magi ... an Ethiopian artist’s impression’ … a photograph used at Epiphany in Columbia Theological Seminary (Photograph; Patrick Comerford)

Patrick Comerford

Sarah Flynn Erickson is the Director of the Center for Lifelong Learning at Columbia Theological Seminary in Decatur, Georgia.

Last night [6 January 2017], she used my photograph of ‘The Adoration by the Magi ... an Ethiopian artist’s impression’ as a projected image during the Epiphany Eucharist and celebrations in the chapel at Columbia Theological Seminary. Meanwhile, in Christ Church Cathedral, Dublin, I was serving as deacon at the Epiphany Eucharist at which Archbishop Michael Jackson presided.

The Epiphany Eucharist in Columbia Theological Seminary was planned by Linzmarie Bason, Corie Cox, Sarah Erickson, Israel Galindo, Alison Riviere and Debra Weir. One of the Scriptural responses at that service included a Response in Poetry through the poem ‘25. XII. 1993’ by Joseph Brodsky, translated from the Russian by Richard Wilbur:

For a miracle, take one shepherd’s sheepskin, throw
In a pinch of now, a grain of long ago,
And a handful of tomorrow. Add by eye
A little bit of ground, a piece of sky,
And it will happen. For miracles, gravitating
To earth, know just where people will be waiting,
And eagerly will find the right address
And tenant, even in a wilderness.
Or, if you're leaving home, switch on a new
Four-pointed star in Heaven as you do,
To light a vacant world with steady blaze
And follow you forever with its gaze.


From the time of its founding in Lexington, Georgia, in 1828, Columbia Theological Seminary has been committed to training people for church leadership.

Since then, Columbia has nurtured, and has been nurtured by, the Presbyterian Church in the South. This connection continues to be a cherished tradition. While Columbia now enjoys an outstanding national and international reputation, it also faithfully upholds its historic covenants with the Synods of Living Waters and South Atlantic.

The seminary takes its name from its first permanent location in 1830 in Columbia, South Carolina. This became the first location of the seminary, and the school became popularly known as Columbia Theological Seminary, a name that was formally accepted in 1925.

Between 1925 and 1930, the seminary president, Richard T. Gillespie, provided leadership that led to the development of the present facilities on a 57-acre campus in Decatur, Georgia.

Columbia’s Center for Lifelong Learning provides non-degree courses and events, offering opportunities to learn with and from others for faithful discipleship. The modules are biblically and theologically grounded, with a practical focus to help participants identify and address specific, real-life needs.

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