Christine Pohl has a great love for the Reformed tradition. 

It’s that love—coupled with her extensive academic and practical expertise—that she looks forward to sharing with participants at this summer’s Big Tent, the biennial national gathering of Presbyterians to be held July 30–August 1 on the campus of the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. 

“As a Methodist, I have done a lot of work on grace and gratitude,” Pohl says. “Because I think grace and gratitude are important for all Christians, I am delighted to work with Presbyterians whose own tradition has a rich appreciation for these themes. If, as followers of Christ, we truly understand our lives as redeemed by costly grace, then our deepest response can only be gratitude.”

Pohl, the award-winning author of several books, serves as associate provost and professor of Church and Society/Christian Ethics at Asbury Theological Seminary in Wilmore, Kentucky. For 11 years before attending seminary, she worked in various ministries including owning a Christian bookstore and working in advocacy and refugee resettlement. 

Martha Moore-Keish

Martha Moore-Keish —Coenraad Brand, Columbia Theological Seminary

“In her book Living into Community, Christine does an excellent job of putting flesh and bone on what living in Christian community can be,” says Charles Wiley, coordinator of the Presbyterian Mission Agency’s office of Theology and Worship. “She provides both deep theological reflection and everyday examples to help guide us in the way of Jesus.”

At the Big Tent, Pohl will be among several featured workshop leaders introducing different aspects and applications of “grace and gratitude,” the key, unifying theme of the Theology, Worship, and Education ministry area.

Steve Yamaguchi

Steve Yamaguchi —Courtesy of Fuller Theological Seminary

“Christine’s theological framework for living into community is grace and gratitude,” Wiley says. “At the very heart of Presbyterian identity is the conviction that we are entirely dependent on the grace of God, and that the only way to appropriately respond is with lives shaped by a profound sense of gratitude. Christine can help us as Presbyterians to claim our identity and push us to practice true Christian community in the lives of our congregations.” 

Other Big Tent speakers on “grace and gratitude” will include Martha Moore-Keish, associate professor for Theology at Columbia Theological Seminary, Decatur, Georgia; and Steve Yamaguchi, dean of students at Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, California. 

Advance registration for the Big Tent continues through June 19. Visit the website to register and to download complete information on leadership and events.