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Stina Busman Jost

Hi! I am Stina Busman Jost. I grew up all over the Midwest - even spending some of my childhood on a hog farm in rural Minnesota. I am interested in ethics as well as the intersection of theology and culture. Currently, I am reading a missional theology book by Darrell Guder, Scot McKnight's newest text on the kingdom, and a couple of spiritual memoirs. Although most of my free time right now is spent chasing a 10-month-old, I am a big fan of discovering new music (Americana and singer/songwriter stuff), fun travel adventures (I've been to all 50 states!), and film that challenges me to see the world differently. I also have a weak spot for puppy videos on Youtube (who can resist them?).

Paul Eddy

I grew up in the western suburbs of Minneapolis, and attended both Bethel College and Seminary. My primary areas of academic interest are historical Jesus studies, theology of religions, theology of sexuality, and issues related to spiritual warfare. Beyond the walls of Bethel, I serve as a teaching pastor at Woodland Hills Church, and as a board member of The Lift, a community development center that works with at-risk youth on the Eastside of St. Paul. My hobbies include unrestrained reading, film watching, and snow skiing. I live in White Bear Township with my wife, Kelly, and our two boys, Jordan (16) and Juston (13).

I am open to cross-gender mentoring.

Victor Ezigbo

I grew up in southeast Nigeria, where my parents served in various leadership positions in an Evangelical church. My theological education has taken me from Nigeria, to the United States of America, and to the United Kingdom (Scotland). I received my B.A. degree from ECWA Theological Seminary Igbaja (Nigeria), an M.A. degree from Wheaton College (IL, USA) and both M.Th. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Edinburgh (Scotland, United Kingdom).

I joined Bethel University in 2008. My wife (Ada) and I have enjoyed Minnesota and Bethel. I am currently the Chair of Biblical and Theological Studies department. I teach and publish in the areas of Christology, African Christianity, and Global theologies. For information about my publications visit my BTS profile page.

I am passionate about working with students who desire to read the Scriptures theologically in a responsible way, desire to dialogue with theological voices from Christian communities around the world, and seek to embody the Christian gospel in the world.

Soccer (or as I prefer to call it “football”) is top on my list of hobbies.

Laura Gilbertson

Home: I was raised in the Twin Cities and now live in Chanhassen.

Professional background: I have taught at Bethel since 2005, and became Program Director of the B.A. in Christian Ministries in 2012. I have served in several ministry contexts including Bethel's Campus Ministries, and most recently was Pastor of Care Ministries at Westwood Community Church in Excelsior, MN where I continue to preach and teach in limited capacity. The integration of scholarship and practical ministry is a valued element of my professional life.

Academic interests: I enjoy exploring the intersection of theology and sociology, particularly topics related to race, gender, and disability. My thinking and teaching is inspired by theologians like James Cone, Gustavo Gutierrez, Leonardo Boff, Elizabeth Johnson, Miroslav Volf, Nancy Eiesland, Soong-Chan Rah, and others who have helped me understand the gospel through the lens of those who have been historically marginalized.

Hobbies: I love planning adventures with my husband and two kids. Our adventures can be big (like travelling) or small (like building forts in the living room), but they're always interesting thanks to four lively imaginations!

Mentoring Style: I am honored to be invited into the life of another, and commit to listen to one's story, to pray together, to offer challenges towards risks that lead to growth, and to help connect students with people in my network who may contribute to their development.

Juan Hernandez, Jr.

Academic areas of expertise: New Testament and early Christianity, with a special interest in New Testament Textual Criticism, especially the text of the Apocalypse and its reception history

Erik Leafblad

Erik is currently completing a Ph.D. in Practical Theology at Luther Seminary, and serves as Instructor of Missional Ministries here at Bethel. His interests include thinking deeply about ministry as a form of theological practice, and how the person of the minister is impacted by their involvement in ministry. Erik is especially delighted to watch students discover who they are in the context of what they are called to do in the world, and to then engage in thoughtful reflection in community as this process unfolds.

Bernon Lee

My name is Bernon Lee. I grew up in hot and humid Singapore. I went to university in Calgary and Toronto (Canada) before receiving my first academic appointment in Warsaw, Indiana (Grace College). I came to Bethel in 2008.

My research explores the intersection of biblical law (and ritual) and what might be broadly described as cultural studies. Currently and specifically, I am interested in the critical imagination that (select) Victorian women and the memory of (European) colonialism bring to the reading of the laws of the Bible.

Beyond things academic, I enjoy watching television, especially British and Scandinavian (mostly Swedish and Danish) crime dramas.

Gary Long

I grew up in India, Bangladesh, and the Philippines, where my parents were involved in religious and humanitarian endeavors. After high school, I attended a Bible college in Springfield, MO, taking a B.A. in Bible. I then went to Denver Seminary (M.A.) and finally to the University of Chicago (Ph.D.), emphasizing Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations. My specialization is in the Hebrew Bible and Ancient Near Eastern Studies, but a new interest and passion is a relatively new field: cognitive science of religion. I have been on the faculties of Wheaton College, Jerusalem University College, and Asia Pacific Theological Seminary, arriving at Bethel in 2000.

My wife, Kathryn, and I have two grown children. My son, Alan, is a cancer immunologist (and survivor) in Chicago, and my daughter, Sydney, is a senior at the University of Minnesota—Morris. Known for years as GAKS to family members, this past father’s day, all four of us had “GAKS” tattooed on our left arms in the ancient script of a language called Ugaritic.

Third generation Pentecostals, my wife and I now self-identify more closely with the Episcopal church, an influence from having worshipped at an Anglican church during years we lived in Jerusalem.

My primary hobby centers around cuisine; I love cooking and pairing foods with good things to drink. Kathryn and I live with two cats.

Karen McKinney

Rev. Dr. Karen McKinney, is Associate Professor of Biblical/Theological Studies, and the Community Liaison for the Office of Diversity at Bethel University She serves as associate minister at Fellowship Missionary Baptist Church in Minneapolis. A native Minnesotan, raised in Minneapolis, she is a Bush Fellow.

Her education includes a BA in English, from the University of Minnesota, an M-Div from Fuller Theological Seminary, an MS in Experiential Education from Mankato State University, and a Doctorate in Educational Leadership from the University of St. Thomas. She has been a youth pastor, youth leadership-training specialist, youth chaplain, training consultant and adult trainer. 

As experiential educator she has experience in service-learning, crafting simulations, outdoor based programs, and leadership development. Missions are a special area of interest. Karen has served in a mission capacity in Mexico, Ecuador, Kenya, and Israel. She has taken teams of youth on mission trips to Haiti, Mexico, Belize and Jamaica. She has a heart for social justice especially the areas of race, poverty, and gender issues.

I am open to doing cross-gender mentoring.

Christian Winn

I am currently working on articles, edited collections and monograph length works exploring the theology of Karl Barth, the relevance of pietism for contemporary theology, the theology of the resurrection, theologies of freedom and the problem of race, the work of John Perkins, the work of Kwame Bediako, and contemporary theologies of the kingdom of God.

Cathy Wright

I grew up in Orange County, California, where I attended what is now Vanguard University. After a one-year M.A., I headed for Texas where I received my doctorate in New Testament at Baylor University. During my time there, I also served as a youth minister in a small Baptist church. Eventually, my journey led me to Bethel, where I have taught for the past 14 years.

My area of interest is New Testament, particularly the Gospel of Luke. I also have strong interests in Christian spiritual formation and in reading scripture with and for the church. I am currently writing book entitled, Luke’s Pathway of Humility, Simplicity, and Prayer, under contract with InterVarsity Press, in which I explore Lukan texts on these topics, the ways in which Luke’s intended audience might have understood these texts, and how the church has understood Jesus’ pattern of humility, simplicity, and prayer.

Our family attends Open Door, where I have been involved in leading spiritual direction groups for the past couple of years. I spend most of my free time hanging out with my kids and hosting their play-dates. As a family, we love to travel, and try to get back to California (where my mother still lives) at least a couple of times a year. One of our favorite things to do is to take long walks on the beach together. 

The mentoring program is very important to me. For all that happens in the classroom, I think that sometimes the most significant influence that we as faculty can have comes through shared stories and presence in the lives of our students. I look forward to participating in this program during its pilot year and into the future.

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