Dwight Vogel

Dwight W. Vogel, a resident of Pilgrim Place in Claremont, California, is Styberg Professor Emeritus of Worship and Preaching at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary. Dwight is an ordained elder of the Iowa Conference of The United Methodist Church. During  his fifteen years on the seminary faculty, he was Professor of Theology and Ministry and Director of the Nellie B. Ebersole Program in Sacred Music. He coordinated the M.A. in music ministry and the Ph.D. in liturgical studies degree programs, and directed the seminary choir. He is a member of The Order of Saint Luke which he served as Abbot.


He received a master’s degree in philosophy from Boston University, his seminary degree from Andover Newton Theological School, and his Ph.D. in theology from Northwestern University, writing his dissertation on the theology of Nels F.S. Ferre.   For twenty years, he was on the faculty of Westmar College in LeMars, Iowa, teaching philosophy and religion and leading the worship life of the community. He came to the Garrett-Evangelical   faculty after serving as pastor of St. Luke's United Methodist Church in Dubuque, Iowa. 


With his wife Linda he has co-authored two books:  Sacramental Living: Falling Stars and Coloring Outside the Lines (1999) and Syncopated Grace: Times and Seasons with God (2002), both published by Upper Room Books.  He edited The Book of Offices and Services of The Order of Saint Luke and  the five volume Daily Office: A Book of Hours for Daily Prayer, published by the Order of Saint Luke. Other writings include Ordo: Bath, Word, Prayer, Table (co-edited with Dirk Lange, 2006), Food for Pilgrims (2005), Primary Sources in Liturgical Theology: A Reader (2000),  By Water and the Spirit (a guide to the United Methodist Baptism Study Document), and Psalms for Worship Today.. He was a member of writing teams for both Standing at the Door: Millennial Change Worship Resources (l999) and WorshipMatters (1999), and a contributor to The Loyal Opposition (2000).


Dwight is an elected member of  The North American Academy of Liturgy where he was  convenor of the Liturgical Theology seminar, and has been an active member of both The Fellowship of United Methodists in Music and Worship Arts  and The United Methodist Association of Scholars  in Christian Education.  He was Dean of the Chapel at Garrett-Evangelical and was minister of music at Northbrook United Methodist Church.  Prior to teaching at Garrett-Evangelical, he was pastor of St. Luke’s United Methodist Church in Dubuque, Iowa, and for twenty years served on the faculty of Westmar College, LeMars, Iowa.


His interests include music, theater, art, poetry, and growing flowers .The Vogels have three children, three grandchildren and four great-grandchildren. 

Linda Vogel - Click here to read Linda's current BLOG post.

Born into a “Santa Fe railroad” family in 1940 and raised in Topeka, Kansas, I was the eldest of three daughters of Samuel P. and Gladys M. Baker.  As I was packing to move to Pilgrim Place in Claremont, CA I found a penny postcard (addressed to me with a 1 cent stamp and postmarked in 1947 with a picture of the San Bernardino Union Station) with this message: “Better jump on a diesel and come on out.  You’d really like it.  Love, Aunt Gertrude.”  I imagine she would be surprised to find me living not far from that train station today!


I graduated from Topeka High School (after Brown vs. Board of Education) but there was only one high school in Topeka then and the high school had always been integrated.  After one year at North Central College, Dwight (who had been the pastor’s assistant during the summer of 1957 when I was president of the Evangelical United Brethren Youth Fellowship) and I were married at Grace EUB Church in Topeka, KS on June 14, 1959.


We moved to Boston where I completed my B.S. in elementary education at Boston University (1963) while Dwight was in graduate school.  I had finished one year of my master’s degree in Christian education at Andover Newton Theological School when we moved to Evanston, IL so Dwight could complete his Ph.D. at Northwestern University.  I was able to transfer two quarters of study at Garrett Theological Seminary back to Andover Newton and to complete my thesis with Wesner Fallaw.  I graduated with an M.R.E. (cum laud) from Andover Newton in 1964.


Our family circle grew with our first child, Peter Jonathan, in 1965; our second but eldest son, Mark Stephen Pulver, who was fourteen years old when he arrived in 1966; and our daughter, Kristin Deborah, in 1967.  We moved to LeMars, IA in September of 1965 where we taught at Westmar College until 1985.  During that time, I taught Christian education, developed a minor in gerontology, and served as Director of Continuing Education.  One of my joys during this time was to be the advisor for the increasing number of older (than “traditionally aged”) students.


We spent our first sabbatical at the Institute for Ecumenical and Cultural Research (IECR) at St. John’s Abbey and University in Collegeville, MN.  It was there that I completed my first book, Helping a Child Understand Death, (1975) which was published by Fortress Press and later translated into Spanish. I commuted to the University of Nebraska at Omaha to complete a graduate specialization in gerontology.  In 1979-80, we spent our second sabbatical in a tiny Iowa town (Martelle) so I could attend the University of Iowa where  I graduated with my Ph.D. in adult education and gerontology in 1981.  My second book, The Religious Education of Older Adults (1984), was published.

I was a diaconal minister and then ordained as a deacon in full connection in the United Methodist Church. After twenty years, we chose to leave Westmar College in 1985 and asked our district superintendent for an appointment where we could serve together. After two years as Minister of Education at St. Luke’s United Methodist Church in Dubuque, IA, I was urged to join the faculty at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary. We discerned that I should do this and spent one year in a commuter marriage.

Dwight left St. Luke’s in 1988 to join me in Chicago and he began teaching part-time at the seminary, then became full time and was later installed in a named chair. One of the young women at St. Luke’s died tragically after we left and I worked with her family to write Rituals for Resurrection (Upper Room, 1996). We both retired in 2003 as Professors Emeriti and Senior Scholars.

During our sixteen years at Garrett-Evangelical, we spent one January traveling with our good friend, Father David Fleming, S.M., in India where he was living. During my next sabbatical I completed a Jossey-Bass Book, Teaching and Learning in Communities of Faith: Empowering Adults through Religious Education (1991). We spent a one-semester sabbatical at the IECR at St. John’s where we completed our first joint book, Sacramental Living: Falling Stars and Coloring Outside the Lines (Upper Room Books, 1999). This was followed by Syncopated Grace: Times and Seasons with God (Upper Room, 2002).

Our three adult children, our three (now adult) grandchildren (our grandson, Caleb Pulver, was killed in a motorcycle accident at age 26), and our four great-grandchildren bring us much joy.

Our decision to move to Pilgrim Place (see pilgrimplace.org) was a great surprise to us. We stopped to visit a colleague on our way to a conference at Santa Barbara, CA. This community reached out and drew us in with its deep commitment to social justice and its intentional Christian community. We moved in on Ash Wednesday, February 9, 2005 and hung our last picture on Easter Sunday afternoon. This proved to be the most strange and unique Lent of our lives!

In retirement, I served on the board of directors of the Christian Educator’s Fellowship for eight years (two years as president). My commitment “to pay my rent on the planet” draws me to work for ecological responsibility and peace with justice. I continue teaching workshops and intensive seminary courses when the opportunities arise. I chair the Sustainability and Faith task force at Claremont United Methodist Church and serve on the Environmental Committee as well as on the steering team for culture change at Pilgrim Place.

A biography and complete bibliography can be found at: http://www.talbot.edu/ce20/educators/protestant/linda_vogel/.