Christen graduated Palmer Theological Seminary in May 2018. She began seminary studies after an almost two-decade career in nursing. “I was confused and terrified when God plucked me out of a ‘set’ life. I had three little girls at home and wondered how I would do this. Once I said ‘yes’, the how didn’t matter. God’s provision blew me away—and continues to do so!”
Christen relates to both the delight and the struggle of an obedient life; a life called to share the joy and the justice of the gospel while simultaneously tending to one’s own wholeness. She recognizes, “Palmer gifted me a sacred place to learn, to be covered by loving community, to discern, and to be transformed.” She believes Palmer, evidencing its character of incarnational witness, can continue to serve and to companion its alumni.
The lifelong Christian journey of becoming can be especially arduous and lonely for leaders of the Church. Christen feels a deep calling to come alongside her alumni peers as the presence and reflection of Christ’s love: listening one another into existence, meeting one another in joy and in sorrow, offering grace and acceptance, serving as an alumni community builder, and encouraging one another in the Spirit. She believes engaging and strengthening the bonds of community, both small and large, will position the Seminary to live out its mission abundantly.
Christen has been honored to serve with the Alumni Care Initiative ministry during its initial 2-year period of care, of connection, and of communal discernment. The Initiative paved the way for CARES, the Center for Alumni Care and Seminary Engagement. She looks forward to continuing to serve the Palmer community as Chaplain and Director of CARES. Christen is an ordained Minister of Word and Sacrament in the Presbyterian Church U.S.A. and serves at Eastern University as Adjunct Faculty in the Bible/Theology Department