We, the Church, are the promising community—“the salt of the earth,” “the light of the world.” Or so the Promising One, crucified and risen, once said and continues to say to the people he gathers around him. But who takes that seriously in this third decade of the 21st century? Our neighbors scoff at it. Our children run from it. We struggle to believe it ourselves as we assess the post-pandemic state of our aging congregations and dwindling institutions.

The goal of this seminar is to help us—once again—to hear the Promise clearly, to think about it deeply, and to let the Spirit refresh us in our calling as stewards of God’s breathtaking promises of forgiveness, love, and abundant life for all people, beginning with the neighborhoods we inhabit.

The 2023 Crossings Conference
The Promising Community: “Can I Get a Witness?”
January 22-25, 2023

Keynote speakers include:
ELCA Bishop Rev. Elizabeth A. Eaton
Rev. Dr. Mary Hinkle Shore
Rev. Dr. Kathryn (Kit) A. Kleinhans

Rev. Robin Lütjohann
Our Lady of the Snows Conference Center
Belleville, IL (15 minutes from Downtown St. Louis)

Register Here for In-Person or Virtual Attendance

Keynote Speakers


Rev. Elizabeth A. Eaton

Rev. Eaton is serving her second six-year term as presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. Before becoming presiding bishop, Eaton was elected twice as bishop of the ELCA's Northeastern Ohio Synod.  She earned a Master of Divinity degree from Harvard Divinity School and a Bachelor of Music Education from the College of Wooster.


Rev. Dr. Mary Hinkle Shore

Dr. Shore is rector and dean of Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary (LTSS), Columbia, South Carolina, a seminary of the ELCA. She received her MDiv from Luther Seminary and her PhD in New Testament from Duke Divinity School, after which she taught New Testament for 16 years at Luther Seminary in St. Paul, Minnesota. Before coming to LTSS in 2019, she served for six years as pastor of Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd in Brevard, North Carolina.


Rev. Dr. Kathryn (Kit) A. Kleinhans

Dr. Kleinhans is dean of Trinity Lutheran Seminary at Capital University, Columbus, Ohio, a seminary of the ELCA. A graduate of Christ Seminary—Seminex, she received her PhD in Theological Studies from Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. Before coming to Trinity, she served for 24 years on the religion faculty of Warburg College, Waverly, Iowa, where she held the Mike and Marge McCoy Family Distinguished Chair in Lutheran Heritage and Mission. She has been a popular speaker at several Crossings conferences.


Rev. Robin Lütjohann

Pastor Lütjohann hails from Berlin, Germany, and has been serving as pastor of Faith Lutheran Church in Cambridge, Massachusetts, since 2015. He graduated from nearby Harvard Divinity School in 2013, where he now co-teaches Lutheran Confessions to ELCA seminarians and others. He is board chair of common cathedral, a street church for unhoused people in Boston, and a member of the Crossings board.


Rev. Dr. Jerome Burce

Dr. Burce recently retired from a career of 41 years in Word and Sacrament ministry. He began in Papua New Guinea where he had been born and raised by missionary parents. His service there focused chiefly on teaching theology and Scripture at a Lutheran seminary. He later moved to U.S parish ministry, serving first at Zion Lutheran Church in Southington, Connecticut and then, for 28 years, at Messiah Lutheran Church in Fairview Park, Ohio, a suburb of Cleveland. Dr. Burce is a graduate of Christ Seminary—Seminex. He later earned a DMin at Hartford Seminary. He began writing for Crossings in 2002 and became the editor of Thursday Theology, a weekly Crossing publication in 2011. He has spoken at several prior Crossings events and is also the current president of the Crossings Board. He resides in Roaming Shores, Ohio.

Rev. Matthew Metevelis

Pastor Metevelis has served as chaplain at Nathan Adelson Hospice in Las Vegas, Nevada since 2009. He also is the associate pastor at Living Hope Lutheran Church in downtown Las Vegas, where he is responsible for community care and faith formation. He received his MDiv from Luther Seminary in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Conference Worship Leader and Eucharist Preacher

Rev. Dr. Arthur (Chris) Repp

Dr. Repp is pastor of Grace Lutheran Church in Champaign, Illinois. His first call was to teach church history and theology at a Lutheran seminary in St. Petersburg, Russia. He then served as pastor of Epiphany Lutheran Church in Carbondale, Illinois, before accepting his current call. He received his MDiv from the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago and a PhD in Russian history from the University of Illinois at Chicago. He is a member of the Crossings board.


What you need to know:

Crossings offers both in-person attendance and virtual attendance for the 2023 Seminar.

Everyone attending in-person must be vaccinated. Crossings is committed to following local, state and federal public health guidelines.


Crossings offers discounts for Seminary Students and First Time Attendees.  See Registration page for details.

Scholarships are also available. Please email conference@ crossings.org for more information and to apply for a scholarship.


Prayer, praise and thanksgiving will be an integral part of our gathering.

We pray that you will join us, and bring a friend.

The 2023 Crossings Seminar

The Promising Community:
“Can I Get a Witness?”

January 22-25, 2023

Our Lady of the Snows Conference Center
Belleville, IL (15 minutes from Downtown St. Louis)