Reverend Hillary Taylor


Mr. Raymond Patterson

Sunday, August 25, 2024

3:00 pm (Eastern Time)

“Putting a Face on the Other Side of the Death Penalty in South Carolina”

A hybrid event: Join in person or online through Zoom


At the Anderson County Library

300 North McDuffie St., Anderson, SC 29621


Register here for the Zoom link

Rev. Hillary Taylor is the Executive Director of South Carolinians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty. A graduate of both Furman University and Candler School of Theology (Emory University) and an ordained United Methodist Minister, she worked as a young adult missionary with the United Methodist Church as a Field Education Coordinator for Seth Mokitimi Methodist Seminary in South Africa, then as a financial coach in Miami, Florida. In her present position she works for restorative justice.

Mr. Raymond Patterson is what he calls “a returning citizen” referring to his 37-year prison journey of which 22 years were on South Carolina’s death row. A resident of Myrtle Beach, he enjoys sharing his high and low experiences, including difficult subjects like prison life, making parole, and avoiding recidivism. He hopes to provide meaningful education and insight, as well as hope and motivation by putting a human face on the other side of the death penalty.

Dr. John Fea

Sunday, September 22, 2024
3:00 pm

“Did Our Founding Fathers Intend America to be a Christian Nation”

This will be a hybrid event. Venue and Zoom link to be announced

John is Professor of American History and Chair of the History Department at Messiah.

He is the author or editor of six books and his essays and reviews have appeared in a variety of scholarly and popular venues.

John lives in Mechanicsburg with his wife Joy, daughters Allyson and Caroline, and dog Jersey.

Dr. Heather Macumber

Sunday, October 27, 2024

3:00 pm (Eastern Time)

Zoom Event (with possible watch group locally)

Register for the Zoom link here:

Heather Macumber is Associate Professor of Biblical Studies at Providence University College in Otterburne, Manitoba (Canada). She received an MDiv from Tyndale University (Toronto, Canada) and graduated with a PhD in Old Testament from St. Michael’s College (Toronto, Canada).

Her work focuses on the intersection of the divine and earthly realms found predominantly in Jewish prophetic and apocalyptic texts. Recent publications employ monster theory as a critical lens to examine the monstrous in Daniel, Revelation, and the Dead Sea Scrolls. In 2021, her book Recovering the Monstrous in Revelation was published with Lexington Books/Fortress Academic as part of the Horror and Scripture Series. She has also published articles in academic journals including the Journal of Hebrew Scriptures, Biblical Interpretation, and the Journal for Interdisciplinary Biblical Studies.

Heather Macumber has appeared as a guest on the popular podcast the Bible for Normal People (episode 149) highlighting her work on monsters in Revelation. Additionally, she is also a contributor to the Visual Commentary on Scripture organized by King’s College, London (England). This is an open access site that features online exhibitions of artwork and biblical commentary by experts. Her exhibition “Leah’s Struggles (Genesis 29:21-35)” is available here.

She lives in southern Manitoba (Canada) with her family. You can follow her on Twitter: @heathermacphd.

Rev. Jim Dant

Sunday, December 1, 2024

4:00 pm (Eastern Time) [not 3:00 as usual]

“Understanding the Development of the Christmas Nativity Stories
Through the Lens of Jewish Midrash
(What You Were NOT Taught in Sunday School)”

Jim Dant was born Jewish, christened Roman Catholic, baptized Baptist and received his doctorate from a Presbyterian Seminary. (He’s ecumenical.) He survived a tumultuous childhood — riddled with divorces, adoption and more divorces — He’s had two mothers, seven fathers and a host of step, half and adopted siblings. (He’s empathetic.)
He is the proud father of three daughters, two granddaughters, and one grandson. (He’s broke.)
Jim is a graduate of Georgia State University, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and Columbia Theological Seminary. He has also enjoyed post-graduate studies at Princeton Theological Seminary, Hebrew College, Macon State College, and the
University of the West Indies. He has received certifications in spiritual direction, group spiritual direction, Ignatian retreat direction from Mercy Center in Burlingame, California, and is an RYT500 Yoga Instructor. (He’s fairly educated.)
Jim currently serves as co-pastor of Nineteenth Avenue Baptist Church in San Francisco, California and is the recently retired Senior Minister of First Baptist Church, Greenville, South Carolina. Over his career, Jim has also pastored in the state of Georgia, taught at Mercer University, Mercer University’s McAfee School of Theology, Brewton Parker College, and led conferences throughout the USA, as well as, in Israel, Greece, Turkey, and Egypt. (He’s experienced.)
He has written nine books, several series of curriculum, numerous articles and essays…and a poem for Highlights magazine when he was nine years old. (He’s published.)
Finally, Jim has been known to ride motorcycles on the weekends, is an avid concert attendee, an ironman triathlete, a student of the classical guitar, bass guitarist for one of San Francisco’s newest and best cover bands, and a semi-professional Texas Hold’em
Poker player. (He’s fun.)

Ani Zonneveld

Sunday, January 12, 2025
3:00 pm

Zoom Event

“Progressive Islam — universal values vs. the politics of human rights”

Founder and President of Muslims for Progressive Values, an international human rights organization that advocates for social justice and equality for all, Ani Zonneveld is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations; on the U.N. Inter-agency Faith Advisory Council, and recently commissioned by the U.N. Office on Genocide Prevention and the Responsibility to Protect to create an anti-hate speech workshop for Muslim communities. In 2023 she was selected as an “inspirational woman” in the LA Times. Recently, Ani co-authored and co-designed an “Inclusive Islam Curriculum Rooted in Human Rights” for children ages 4-7 and co-authored a chapter titled “Transnational Progressive Islam: Theory, Networks, and Lived Experience” for a book titled “Handbook of Contemporary Islam and Muslim Lives”. She is the subject of a documentary title “al-imam” featuring Ani’s activism works, and screened at the Cannes Film Festival.