Hood Theological Seminary celebrated its twenty first commencement on Saturday, May 21, 2022 at Varick Auditorium on the campus of Livingstone College. Family and friends gathered to support the 2022 graduating class of Hood Theological Seminary. The day was met with excitement, support, and enthusiasm for the graduates’ futures. Reverends Lara Musser Gritter and Josh Musser Gritter, Co-Senior Pastors of First Presbyterian Church of Salisbury, North Carolina were the 2022 Commencement Speakers.
In their address, Reverends Lara Musser Gritter and Josh Musser Gritter discussed the joys, triumphs, hardships, and difficulties ministry offers. They stated that “...with God’s help, the graduates completed their degrees during this time of uncertainty...” As Rev. Lara Musser Gritter stated “Well done good and faithful servants.” She also stated that “You will find God’s power when you are humble, you will find God’s power when you are open, and you will find God’s power when you are weak...Our final charge to you is this, love the Lord your God, with all your heart, mind, and strength. Make your love of God be like an oak tree, planted by streams of water. May its roots grasp deeply into the earth to ground you, and may its branches move out thickly and widely to shade you...You are the imperfect instrument that God is delighted to work through.” Rev. Josh Musser Gritter also stated “Show the love of Jesus to all people...Preach the word of God in season and out. Teach faithfully watching over your people. Guide them in faith and instruction. Nourish them in wisdom, strengthen them to glorify God. Celebrate their encounters with God, as if they were your own.” Rev Lara Musser Gritter stated: “Your calling for all its difficulty, let it be a source of joy. Whatever the future holds, remember that God is your beginning and your end. God will show up.”
The Doctor of Humane Letters was awarded to Reverend Dr. Robert Milton Lewis, Carla Maxwell Ray, and Gregory M. Alcorn. The highlight of the graduation service was the conferring of six Doctor of Ministry degrees and fifteen Master of Divinity degrees.
Hood Theological Seminary is a graduate and professional school sponsored by the A.M.E. Zion Church and approved by the University Senate of The United Methodist Church. Its student body, faculty and staff currently comprise persons from many different denominations. Hood's mission is to prepare women and men for bold and creative leadership for the Christian church for a diverse world.