Bio

Thanks so much for visiting my site! Here's a little bit about me.

By profession I am a United Methodist Clergywoman, serving as Executive Director of the Massachusetts Bible Society, one of the oldest Bible Societies in the US. I was hired in April of 2007 to re-invent the historic institution for the 21st century. How fun is that? I love a creative challenge.

In my years of parish ministry I had three books published:

Blowing the Lid Off the God-Box: Opening Up to a Limitless Faith (Morehouse, 2005)

God's Top 10: Blowing the Lid Off the Commandments (Morehouse, 2006)

God With Skin On: Finding God's Love in Human Relationships (Morehouse, 2009)

As part of my work promoting biblical literacy, understanding, and dialogue for MBS, I have also produced a series of three Bible studies called Exploring the Bible: The Dickinson Series.  These have received strong academic endorsements and are being used across the US in churches of all kinds as well as in prisons, homeless shelters, retirement centers, and seminaries. All royalties from these sales go directly to the work of the Massachusetts Bible Society.

My newest personal book is New Vision for an Old Story: Why the Bible Might Not Be the Book You Think It Is. (Eerdmans, 2018) I was honored that Will Willimon agreed to provide the foreword.

I'm currently working on a new, five-volume series for the Massachusetts Bible Society called Exploring Justice: The Ten Commandments. Like Exploring the Bible, this is a curriculum designed for use in small groups. The first volume, titled Priorities, came out in October of 2019. Like the Bible study series, all royalties from sales of this series go directly to MBS. The theme and purpose is similar to God's Top 10--to explore social justice issues through the lens of the Ten Commandments. This series is a greatly expanded treatment of the topic while also being updated, and formatted as a curriculum.

I was born and raised in Rhode Island, got a B.A. in German and English (with honors in German) from Bucknell University in 1980 and my M.Div. (Magna Cum Laude) from the Candler School of Theology at Emory University in 1994. I was ordained as an Elder in the Florida Conference of the United Methodist Church in 1997 and transferred home to New England in 1999.

I have served United Methodist churches as a pastor in Cross City, FL; Gainesville, FL; Dover, NH; and Westford, MA.  It all added up to 13 years in the local church before taking the MBS position. I'm a member of the New England Conference of the United Methodist Church and won the Wilbur C. Ziegler Award for Excellence in Preaching from them in 2000.

You can read about the above photo with Cardinal Sean O'Malley in this article from the Huffington Post.

I am now living in Sandwich, MA, and am a member of the Massachusetts Society of Mayflower Descendants. My father's line connects with that of Stephen Hopkins back with my great, great grandfather. I feel the weight of that ancestry, knowing that every person in my lineage, from Stephen Hopkins straight to me, has negatively impacted the Native Peoples of this land. Some harm was direct and intentional, some was indirect and complicit. Some harmful actions were unknowing or well-intentioned, some knew darn well what they were doing; but all of it accrued to my benefit and to their detriment today.

I actively look for ways to dismantle the unjust systems that continue the trauma even now and to atone in whatever ways I can for the harm done, especially for the descendants of the Mashpee Wampanoag, who my ancestors were tied to most closely. If you wish to join me, please consider donating to the Wôpanâak Language Reclamation Project.

And next Thanksgiving, join me in including a prayer of confession with your prayer of thanks. If you're celebrating in a home on U.S. soil, chances are the land on which it was built was stolen from the First Nations. Not sure who first owned it? Plug in your address on this map to see. Then maybe look more closely at the descendants of that Native Nation today. Are there ways you might support them?

I'm available for speaking, preaching and workshops. Just drop me a line through my contact link.

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