We are pleased to announce the spring 2021 ULS Guatemala Immersion Semester Program, fully online, providing a cohort of students with learning opportunities in an increasingly diverse world, equipping them to proclaim the living Gospel for a changing Church. This global study experience connects participants with the world, cultures, histories, and languages of Latinx neighbors in Guatemala and the United States. While developing an awareness of this global network of church ministries, students will be enriched for their own current and future work in cross-cultural contexts in the United States and beyond. This semester includes enrollment in four courses: Fundamentals of Spanish Language (La Unión Spanish School in Antigua, Guatemala), Latinx Ministry in Context (Rev. Jennifer Hope-Tringali), The Bible and Immigration in the United States and Latin America (Dr. Crystal L. Hall), and Latin American Liberation Theology: From Medellin to Today (Rev. Dr. John Hoffmeyer).
Three students were selected from a pool of applicants. Their bios are below.
Our primary organizational partners in Guatemala are La Iglesia Luterana Agustina de Guatemala (The Lutheran Augustinian Church in Guatemala), Tree 4 Hope and Hope Academy, a bi-lingual girls STEAM school, and La Unión Spanish School, through whom our students will be taking Spanish classes online.
Scott Rush is a first-year MDiv student at ULS, pursuing ordination as a Minister of Word and Sacrament in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. He is a full-time Philadelphia campus commuter. He lives in New Jersey with his husband Michael and their fur babies, and is the proud and doting uncle to 5 nieces, 4 nephews, a great-nephew, and a great-niece.
Scott has been interested in the Guatemala Immersion Program since he first heard about it last year. He is drawn to social justice work and believes that the program will help prepare him for that work. He has represented ULS as a student fellow to the Poor People’s Campaign and has been an active advocate for the elimination of poverty, homelessness, hunger, and gun violence. When he is not reading, studying, or attending classes, Scott is the Executive Director of Family Promise of Burlington County, a nonprofit organization serving families experiencing homelessness. He is a congregant at Prince of Peace Church in Marlton, where he is a council member, assistant minister, leader of their homeless ministry, and co-leader of their feeding ministries. Scott is excited to be selected for the Guatemala program and can’t wait to immerse himself in the language and culture of Central American Christianity.
Lyn Jackson is currently enrolled in the MDiv program at ULS, and serves on staff as Senior Assistant to Contextual Formation and Hospitality Coordinator. Participating in the Guatemala Immersion Semester Program would assist her in embracing a more excellent knowledge and understanding of the Latinx community. She hopes that becoming bi-lingual in Spanish would help break cultural barriers to reach cultures other than her own.
Lyn is the youngest of five children born to Allen Crabbe and Mary Crabbe Fox. As a small child, she attended Trinity United Methodist Church in Germantown. Lyn dedicated her life to Christ and was baptized. As an adult, she was a member of the Reformation Lutheran Church for twelve years. In 2000, God called her to Zion Baptist Church in Ambler, Pennsylvania, where she served for twenty years. Lyn is currently attending Salt and Light, where Pastor Cean James and Pastor Chris Holland preside.
On December 12, 2000, Lyn received her call to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and her license on December 4, 2011, under the leadership of Pastor Gerald L. Chapman, Sr. She received her Bachelor of Science from Lancaster Bible College.
Eric Faret, a life-long Lutheran, is a fourth-year MDiv student at ULS, and was recently approved for ordination in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. Eric is a spiritually rooted and faithful person who is compassionate, humble, and has a strong call to pastoral care and social ministry. He has experience working with the homeless and a strong desire to learn more about immigration and asylum issues and to serve the immigrant community. A visit to a detention center in 2018 made a lasting impression on Eric as he witnessed firsthand the conditions the detainees lived-in and the impact on their emotional and spiritual life.
Before beginning his seminary education, Eric was a synodical deacon in the Metro NY Synod, served on the synod’s strategic plan initiative and the anti-racism taskforce. He also served as a worship leader and provided pastoral care in are habilitation facility. After thirty-seven years of working in sales, strategy, and operations, Eric retired from Mondelez International (formerly Nabisco). He resides in Deer Park, New York, with his wife Lisa of thirty-six years. Eric and Lisa have two children, Ryan (deceased) and Kristina.