Story and photo by Charmaine Robledo
Director of Communications, Mountain Sky Conference
It will truly be a homecoming for Mountain Sky Area Bishop Karen Oliveto as she returns to her alma mater, Drew University, this week to preach at the Tipple-Vosburgh Lectures and receive a Distinguished Alumni Award. Bishop Oliveto attended Drew University in New Jersey to earn her Bachelor's in Psychology in 1980 and later a Master's in Philosophy in 1991. She then attended the Drew Theological School to earn a PhD in Sociology of Religion in 2002.
She will be honored as the 2018 recipient of the Distinguished Alumni Award during the Theological Association reunion lunch Oct. 3. The Reverend Jacqui Lewis of Middle Collegiate Church in New York will also be honored.
Bishop Oliveto will then be the keynote address on Oct. 4 during the annual Tipple-Vosburgh Lectures, which is an event that features social justice speakers and artists. She will preach on "Pastoral Heart and Prophetic Leadership" and then preside over communion at the closing worship service. These events will also coincide with the exhibit, "The Ever-Widening Circle," which looks at the social principles of The United Methodist Church and the role that church members, students and faculty play in the modern social justice movement. It will run from Oct. 1 to 4.
Following this trip, Bishop Oliveto will preach at John Street United Methodist Church in New York on Oct. 14 as the church marks the 250th anniversary of its Wesley Chapel. John Street is the oldest congregation in the U.S. More importantly, Bishop Oliveto will be presiding over the baptism of Austin Kaplan, grandson of the Rev. Youngsook Kang, who is the Superintendent of Leadership Development and Director of Connectional Ministry for the Mountain Sky Conference. Rev. Kang's daughter, Joann, lives in New York City.