- BA, Eastern Mennonite University
- MA, Eastern Mennonite Seminary (Religion)
- PHD, Catholic University of America
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One of the most urgent needs for the church in the twenty-first century is a new generation of creative and courageous leaders with a clear vision of the kingdom of God and a commitment to representing the good news of Jesus in the world. After two decades of teaching culture, religion, and mission courses to undergraduates at EMU, leading numerous semester-long and summer cross-cultural study programs in the Middle East, and directing the John Coffman Center for Missional Leadership Development at EMS, Dr. Linford Stutzman now directs and teaches courses in the new Biblical Lands Educational Seminars and Service (BLESS) program at EMS that brings all of the above together. In cooperation with mission and service agencies, BLESS provides unique overseas study opportunities for young adults and others that connect the dynamic and dangerous first century “Romanized” world of Jesus and Paul with our dynamic and dangerous globalized twenty-first century world of the future.
Dr. Stutzman’s curiosity for the world and commitment to sharing the good news of Jesus began as a teen-ager in British Columbia where his parents were missionaries among Native Americans. Service in Israel, long-term mission assignments in Germany and Australia, a BA from EMU, and MAR from EMS, and a PhD in Religion and Culture from The Catholic University of America, provide the experiential and educational foundation for Dr. Stutzman’s passion for taking students into the world to learn from Jesus and his early followers.
Each summer since 2004, Dr. Stutzman and his wife Janet have been exploring the Roman Empire, Paul’s mission activity, and the book of Acts aboard their “research vessel” SailingActs, and leading study seminars on and around the Mediterranean Sea for seminary students and others.
My passion in life is to teach in a way that encourages, equips and enables students to follow Jesus into the world, sharing the Good News of the Kingdom. Leaders of the faithful church in the future will need to understand their culture, the authentic witness of Jesus, and the mandate and opportunities for the church. My commitment in teaching missions and directing the John Coffman Center at the seminary is to contribute to learning in these areas.
Scholarly Presentations and Abstracts
- Presented “Sailing with Paul, Pagans, and Pirates: Insights into Paul’s Social Network during his Mission Voyages,” at the St. Paul Cultural Center, Antalya, Turkey, May 29, 2014
- Presented “Paul the Explorer of Empire and Kingdom” at the Ephesus Meeting, Kusadasi, Turkey, May 30, 2011
Presented “Paul on Samos” aboard Next Wave, YWAM ship in the Mediterranean, in Pythagoria, Samos, June 5, 2014
“Biblical Perspectives on the World Christian Movement” for the opening session of the Perspectives course offered by Virginian Mennonite Missions held at Grace Covenant Church, Harrisonburg, VA, January – April, 2014
“Paul the Traveler and the People of the Mediterranean Sea” presented to Zion Mennonite Church Sunday school class, December, 2013
“Paul and the Maritime Mob” sabbatical presentation for EMU faculty, November, 2013
“Cross-Cultural Discipleship” presentations for Mennonite Mission Network new worker orientation, Elkhart, IN, July, 2012, 2013
“The Christian Movement: Mission in Acts,” presentations at tranSend orientation, Virginia Mennonite Missions, July, 2012, 2013
Presented “The Living God is a Missionary God” and “Unleashing the Gospel: Mission in the Early Church” at the Perspectives course at EMS offered by Virginia Mennonite Missions, Sept-Dec. 2012
“Mission of the New Testament Church,” presentations at World Mission Institute, Harrisburg, PA June, 2012.
“The Journeys of Paul” presentation in Park View Mennonite Church Sunday school class, July, 2012.
“Paul’s Journey to Rome,” presentation at the St. Paul Union Church in Antalya, Turkey, September, 2012.
The following presentations on “Ports of Paul” are the result of a fall sabbatical research project in Turkey, August – November, 2012.
“The Ports of Paul,” presentation in Eastern Mennonite Seminary class on Acts, November, 2012
“Acts” Sunday School and Sermon at Zion Mennonite Church, Dec. 2012
“Ports of Paul” Sunday School and Sermon at Immanuel Mennonite Church, Dec. 2012
“Ports of Paul” Sunday School and Sermon at Mountain View Mennonite Church, Dec. 2012
“Called: Direction, Preparation and Timing,” CALLED retreat, Eastern Mennonite Missions, Akron, PA, Nov. 2011.
“Voyaging in Faith” and “When a Doctor Travels with Paul,” presentations for the annual convention of the Mennonite Medical Association, Williamsburg, VA June, 2010.
Church, Community and Professional Service
Led “Yella” a young adult leadership development program for the Mennonite Church of Eastern Canada/MCC in Israel 2008, 2009, 2010, 2012, 2015
Let learning seminary for adults in Greek islands and Rome, June, 2015
Led two learning seminars for adults in Turkey and Greece, June, 2012
Consultant for Virginia Mennonite Board of Missions
Consultant for Nazareth Village educational program development
- American Academy of Religion
- Association of Anabaptist Missiologists (committee member)
Professional Conferences Attended
American Academy of Religion, annual meeting, San Jose, CA, Nov. 2014
American Academy of Religion, annual meeting, Baltimore, MD, Nov. 2013
American Academy of Religion, annual meeting, Chicago, IL, Nov. 2012
American Academy of Religion, annual meeting, San Francisco, CA, Nov. 2011
New Courses Taught
- Developed the Senior Seminar cross-cultural course “Seeking the Kingdom in Empire” and co-led in Turkey in 2013
- Led the semester-long Middle East undergraduate cross-cultural study program that included a new segment in Turkey and a revised course “The Christian Movement in the Mediterranean.”
- Led a semester-long Middle East undergraduate cross-cultural study program that included a new Arabic-language course in Damascus, Syria in the spring semester, 2011.
- In cooperation with Jerusalem University College, taught a new version of the Eastern Mennonite Seminary /BLESS course “The Christian Movement in the Mediterranean” aboard a sailboat in the Aegean in May, 2011, 2012
Coordinator of EMU speaking visit of Dr. Mark Wilson, biblical researcher from Antalya, Turkey
Coordinator of EMU visit of Dr. Moshe Shner, Oranim
Cross-Cultural Senior Seminar leader (with Jerry Holsopple) Turkey 2013Middle East
Cross-Cultural Study Semester leader: 2001, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
Summer Cross Cultural leader: Albania 1998, Lithuania 2002, Turkey 2005, 2007, 2012
Cross Cultural Committee
Alumni Board Faculty Representative