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August 31, 2022 News

ECF Announces the 2022 Fellows

The Episcopal Church Foundation is excited to announce the three individuals named to the 2022 Fellows class – Matthew Lukens, Kerlin Richter and Dustin Seo. These innovative and emerging leaders are pairing their expertise with their passion to make a positive impact on the Episcopal Church and beyond.

As ECF’s longest running program, the Fellowship Partners Program has been supporting entrepreneurial leaders since 1964. Initially started to support academics with intentions to teach in seminaries, the Fellowship has expanded over the years to lift up emerging academic and ministry leaders who seek to impact the wider Church. ECF is proud to partner with our 2022 Fellows and is excited to journey with them as they shape the Episcopal Church of the future. To view a list of all ECF Fellows, click here.

The three recipients’ ministry projects show a Church that is engaged in a changing world. The 2022 Fellows are exploring a new ministry on a college campus, rethinking sex education for clergy and using music as an outreach tool. Read more about the 2022 Fellows and their projects below.

Matthew Lukens is the chaplain at Canterbury House at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. He was originally born and raised a Southern Baptist in Alabama and found the Episcopal Church through campus ministry at the University of Virginia. In the last decade of his life and ministry he’s worked with young adults, the LGBTQ+ community, two quiet parishes in Hawaii, and buildingless congregations asking fundamental questions about the commitment of their resources to building up the community around them. He enjoys conversations about the Meaning of It All, comic books, techno, getting out into the woods, playing with his dog, and traveling on a shoestring. He is haunted by the story of the rich young ruler and is constantly looking for a way to sell everything and follow Jesus in a world that insists on health insurance and retirement planning.

In his ECF Fellowship project, Sound & Silence, Matthew is pulling together threads of his ministry and passions from the last 15 years of his life ranging from the Christian contemplative tradition to experimenting with art in worship and prayer to ways of creating deep community across lines of difference. He is not quite sure where this will end up but is grateful to be on the ride.

The Rev. Kerlin Richter is the Rector of Saint David of Wales Episcopal Church in Portland, OR, and was church planter of Bushwick Abbey, a creative Episcopal church plant in Brooklyn, NY. Her visionary project, In The Flesh: Intimacy, Consent, and Pleasure for Faithful People, will allow her gifts of inquiry, creativity, and imagination to open a conversation at the intersection of faith and sexuality that seeks to reframe how we talk about sex in our faith communities. Kerlin currently sits on the Diocese of Oregon’s Task Force for Trans and Non-binary Rights, and she also serves on the Oregon Human Rights Commission for the Decriminalization of Sex Work.

As an ECF Fellow, Kerlin seeks to challenge outdated and harmful ideas about sex and sexuality in order to equip leaders in the church to provide compassionate and responsible pastoral care, continuing the Episcopal Church’s legacy of inclusion, education, exploration, and pastoral curiosity.

A native Angeleno, Dustin Seo is a cellist and arts administrator committed to building community spaces in Los Angeles through music and fellowship. During his tenure as the Associate Artistic Director at Street Symphony, Dustin committed his artistic practice to organizing and empowering communities in Los Angeles, specifically through partnerships with Skid Row based arts organizations and service providers. He now turns his artistic focus towards “Laós Chamber Music,” a new concert series hosted at Church of Our Saviour, in San Gabriel, CA, and in collaboration with its partner ministries. Dustin also performs as an active freelancer in Los Angeles, performing with several LA ensembles, and recording on a number of media projects.

In 2021, Dustin was the recipient for the California Arts Council Established Artist Fellowship. Dustin is a graduate of the Eastman School of Music (Rochester, NY), where he received his Bachelor of Music degree with distinction in Cello Performance. Along with his performance studies, he also received an honors academic major in Musical Arts as well as a Certificate in Arts Leadership. Dustin plays on a 2011 cello by James McKean.

The application process for the 2023 ECF Fellowship will open in November 2022. Complete information about the ECF Fellowship Partners Program can be found on ECF's website.

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