The Graymoor Ecumenical and Interreligious Institute (GEII) introduced its inaugural class of six Graymoor Scholars, who will discuss their research at the upcoming Ecclesiological Investigations conference in San Juan, Puerto Rico.  

“These are some extremely talented emerging voices who will be players in the future of the church and of ecumenical engagement,” said GEII Associate Director Dr. Aaron Hollander, PhD. “It’s a privilege to be collaborating in equipping them for ecumenical ministry and leadership, and we’re looking forward to a successful and productive conference.” 

Ecclesiological Investigations is a network that promotes research, dialogue and debate in ecclesiology, drawing from scholars, research centers and projects from across the globe. The theme of the 14th annual Ecclesiological Investigations international conference is “Decolonizing Churches,” which will focus on decoupling churches and ecclesiology from the colonial enterprise of the past five hundred years. The conference will take place at the metropolitan campus of La Universidad Interamericana de Puerto Rico, June 22-25, with participants joining both in person and virtually.  

GEII is a sponsor and organizer of the conference together with Dormition of the Virgin Mary Greek Orthodox Church, New York; Georgetown University Department of Theology and Religious Studies; La Universidad Interamericana de Puerto Rico; The Mark D. Hostetter and Alexander N. Habib Foundation; The Patrick Grace and the Sarita Kenedy East Foundation; El Seminario Evangélico de Puerto Rico; and The Union of Charismatic Orthodox Churches. 

The Graymoor Scholars are doctoral students studying theology, ecclesiology, ethics and the history of Christianity. In addition to presenting their research at the upcoming Ecclesiological Investigations international conference, the work of the Graymoor Scholars will be published in Ecumenical Trends and help shape the future of ecumenical conversations in American institutions of theological education. 

Dr. Hollander hopes the nascent Graymoor Scholar program will become an “ongoing aspect of GEII’s intellectual and intercommunal footprint.” 

Meet the Graymoor Scholars 

Britta Meiers Carlson – Britta is a PhD student at the Boston University School of Theology. An ordained pastor in the Evangelical Lutheran Church, her work centers on the interactions between historically white Christian churches and Latin American immigrant communities, showing how ecclesiology is evolving in the United States. 

Stephen R. Di Trolio Coakley – Stephen is a PhD student in the Department of History and Ecumenics at the Princeton Theological Seminary. A native of Costa Rica and having grown up in Argentina, Stephen’s research field includes Latin American political history, Pentecostalism in Argentina social movements, political theory and decolonial theory. 

Yenny Delgado – A psychologist and public theologian, Yenny has worked with social movements and local churches for more than a decade. She advocates for improved equality education and ending racism in the church. She is a ruling elder of the Presbyterian Church and is a doctoral student in Social Science of Religion and the University of Lausanne. 

Ryan Ramsey – Holding a master’s degree in Religion from Yale Divinity School and a bachelor’s degree from Lee University, Ryan’s research compares Latin American and African charismatic leaders in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. His work largely focuses on the relationships between Christianity and indigenous peoples. Ryan is a PhD student at Baylor University. 

Kenia Vanessa Rodriguez – Kenia is a decolonial feminist PhD student in Christian Social Ethics at Drew Theological School. Her work centers on decolonizing the theory and practice of the Protestant Church in the United States. She obtained her master’s degree in divinity from the Wesley Theological Seminary. Prior to that, she was a practicing immigration law attorney in the D.C. area. 

Hesron Sihombing – An Indonesian native, Hesron studies theology and ethics at the University of Denver Iliff School of Theology. His work examines the process of decolonizing churches by decolonizing the history of mission from the standpoint of an Indonesian Lutheran. 

For information about the Ecclesiological Investigations upcoming international conference, visit the conference website.