2016 Advent Graduates


Everyone is invited to attend our Advent Commencement service at 1:30 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 16, 2016, at Christian Life Center, 3489 Little York Road, Dayton, Ohio. The ceremony will be livestreamed for those who are unable to travel to Dayton.

Dr. Stan Tharp, Senior Pastor at Christian Life Center and a good friend of United, will deliver the commencement address. Dr. Tharp has served as senior pastor at Christian Life Center since 1990. Under his leadership, the church has pursued a “God-sized vision,” building partnerships with other churches and ministries in the urban community and growing into a congregation of more than 2,500 across four campuses in the Dayton area. Dr. Tharp holds an M.A. in Pastoral Counseling and Psychology, an M.B.A. in Management and a D.Min. in Conflict Management.

Mr. and Mrs. Rick and Vicki James from Fort Wayne, Indiana, will also be recognized for their generous $500,000 gift for student scholarships, which helped to make our Second Mile giving campaign so successful last spring. The James family has also personally sponsored Brian Lothridge through the Master Scholar program and will participate in awarding him his Master of Divinity degree. Brian is currently serving as a pastor in the Upper New York Conference of The United Methodist Church.

United has a commencement service each May and December. In 2016, 120 individuals will have graduated from United Theological Seminary. We are particularly delighted that our Dean of the Chapel, Rev. Dan Gildner, will receive his Doctor of Ministry degree in Church Renewal at this Friday’sceremony. Click here for a full list of our 2016 May graduates and December candidates for graduation.

Throughout the fall semester, I have been praying regularly for each United student by name. My prayer is that each student will experience God’s amazing grace and unconditional love, so they can share this Good News in their congregations and communities.

A recent survey of United’s alumni/ae revealed that 86% of United graduates currently serve or are retired from ministry. We thank God for each of our graduates and pray that God will use them and their congregations to become so filled with the love of God that they help to heal our fractured nation and world.

Please join us on Friday, Dec. 16, at 1:30 p.m. at Christian Life Center or on Livestream to celebrate what God is doing to bring redemption and hope to our world.

Grace and Peace,
Dr. Kent Millard
United Theological Seminary

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