The Very Rev. Dr. Thomas Ferguson
- B.A., Wesleyan University
- M.Div., Yale Divinity School
- Th.M., Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology
- Ph.D., Graduate Theological Union
About Dean Ferguson
I came to Bexley Hall in 2011 after ten years of service on the staff of the Episcopal Church Center, first as associate deputy to the Presiding Bishop for ecumenical and interreligious relations from 2001-2009, before being appointed ecumenical and interreligious officer in 2010. As part of this work, I served as the primary theological consultant and staff support for bilateral theological dialogues with the Presbyterian Church (USA), United Methodist Church, Moravian Church, and Roman Catholic Church, along with supporting full communion relationships with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, Old Catholic Churches, and the Philippine Independent Church. Interreligious Relations became an important component; in the months after 9/11, the Church Center worked closely with Episcopal Relief and Development to produce resources to help the Church better understand Islam and the increasingly multicultural character of religion in the USA.
I did my PhD work at the Church Divinity School of the Pacific, a member of the Graduate Theological Union. The focus of my doctoral work was on the interplay between heresy and orthodoxy in early Christianity, specifically in the debates over Trinitarian theology. My dissertation was published by Brill Academic Publishers as The Past is Prologue: The Revolution of Nicene Historiography, and can be found online. While serving as ecumenical officer, I also taught adjunct courses in Anglican and Episcopal history and theology, first at Union Theological Seminary in New York, then as professor of Anglican Studies at the Episcopal Theological School at Claremont in Claremont, CA.
I was ordained to the priesthood in 2009 and served as interim chaplain at St Francis House, the Episcopal chaplaincy at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and also as a short-term, part-time interim at a local ELCA congregation. I was a clergy spouse for 11 years before we became a clergy couple – my wife, the Rev. Shannon Kelly, was most recently the bishop's assistant for formation in the Diocese of Milwaukee and is currently working as a contract consultant for the Church Center in New York, writing and editing Christian education and formation materials. We live in Bexley with our six-year-old son and our Basset hound, Thor. I grew up in the Boston area and received my MDiv from Yale and a certificate in Anglican Studies from Berkeley Divinity School at Yale. While working towards my PhD, I also served as chaplain intern at the Miriam Hospital in Providence, Rhode Island (as part of a year-long CPE residency) and as assistant for adult formation and worship at Emmanuel Episcopal Church in Boston.
History and Polity of the Episcopal Church