Brent Dearnell Spotlight

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United 2nd Year M.Div. Student


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I came to United Theological Seminary because of its interest in church renewal. I have seen United stand in the history of the Christian faith, building relationships with the present church, and looking to where the church can go. I appreciate this view for a seminary as they train the future leaders of the church. My favorite experiences at United have come when I have been challenged to identify what it is that I believe. Through classes like Integration I have learned to question and identify beliefs due to cultural context versus a truer understanding that has come through study and articulating my faith in a diverse group.

I am currently working as the Director of Youth and Young Adult Ministries at Shiloh United Methodist Church on the west side of Cincinnati, Ohio. As I have taken online classes, hybrid classes and traditional classes, my capabilities to lead youth and college-aged adults has grown. Through this growth I have been able to help all of the students, and myself, gain a deeper relationship with the Lord while becoming a better leader of the church.

One of the most important things I have learned from being a student at United is how to seek out how Christians are similar instead of the differences within denominations. This ecumenical view has helped me find professors and friends of many different denominations help shape my understanding of what it is to be a United Methodist pastor.