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Pre-July 2009 Press Archives

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5/13/2008 Baccalaureate to feature EMO director

McMINNVILLE -- David Leslie, executive director of Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon, will present the address at baccalaureate services to Linfield College graduates Saturday, May 31, at 6 p.m. in the Ted Wilson Gymnasium.

His address will be "Faithful Journeys."

Leslie has been director of EMO since 1997. He is a frequent speaker and writer on a wide range of topics related to peacemaking, ecumenism and interfaith relations, social justice, and religion and society, and was the guest preacher at the Oregon States Day at the Washington National Cathedral in Washington, D.C. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree from The University of Texas at Austin and his Masters of Divinity from Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary. He is a lay member in the Presbyterian Church. Prior to joining EMO, Leslie served as executive director of Interfaith Ministries for Greater Houston. He was the founding executive director of the Habitat for Humanity affiliate in Austin and served on numerous other boards while in Austin and Houston. He is active in numerous community organizations including the National Council of Churches in Christ in the USA (NCC) Interfaith Relations Commission, advisory board of the Pacific Institute for Ethics and Social Policy at Pacific University, Portland Workers Rights Board and the Northwest Workers’ Justice Project Advisory Board.

"Baccalaureate is intended to be a spiritual exclamation point to our academic pilgrimage, one that gives thanks for the awareness and knowledge we have gained and anticipates, through hope and prayer, the challenges yet to come," said David Massey, Linfield chaplain, who will preside over the service.

The Baccalaureate Brass, under the direction of Joan Haaland Paddock, professor of music, and the Linfield Concert Choir will perform. A number of graduating seniors will also participate in the program, presenting readings and prayer. The baccalaureate service precedes Linfield's commencement exercises which will be held Sunday, June 1, at 10 a.m. in the Oak Grove.

Baccalaureate has existed for centuries in colleges and universities as a time of worship for graduating members of the senior class. College officials, faculty and graduating seniors wear academic dress for the occasion. Linfield's baccalaureate service is ordered according to the traditions within Protestant Christianity and strives to touch the universal theme of common humanity that can be found in all the world's great religions.