Thursday, November 30, 2017
The weekend before Thanksgiving I attended the annual meeting of the Society of Biblical Literature. The conference this year was in Boston. This is an annual meeting that has been happening since the 1880, and it is held jointly with the annual meeting of the American Academy of Religion. While we were there I attended a number of sessions devoted to various topics in biblical and theological studies, we (my wife traveled with me) attended worship at the first church I served after seminary, and we had the chance to have coffee and chat with my doctoral supervisor and his wife. An added bonus – we stayed in Boston through Thanksgiving to share the holiday with our son, who is studying in a master’s program at the Boston Conservatory.
An especially meaningful event that I attended was the presentation of a book produced in honor of the teaching ministry of one of my seminary professors, entitled "The Crucified Apostle: Essays on Peter and Paul". Dr. Hafemann is one of the most significant teachers in my own education. He has had a significant impact on me and has influenced my understanding of biblical interpretation and of biblical theology, and he is a model of Christian character for me. After the formal presentation, he had the opportunity to respond, and it was vintage Scott Hafemann. He was well–prepared (despite his claim that he had not written a response), he was very gracious toward his students, and he was humble. There were seventeen contributors, and I was privileged to write an article for inclusion in this most special book project. My contribution is entitled “Opening the Heart: Compassion and Suffering in the Corinthian Correspondence.” It was a very special evening!