“Reflections on the Soul of the University” will be the subject of a free, public talk to be given by Dr. William Reist, D.Min., recently retired senior pastor at College First Church of God in Findlay. The event will be held Friday, Sept. 21 at 7:30 p.m. in Winebrenner Theological Seminary’s TLB Auditorium as part of the University of Findlay’s DeBow and Catherine Moore Freed Contemporary Christian Lecture Series.
Reist will explore the nature of UF’s Christian heritage in the larger world of church-related higher education. He will propose ideas that would clarity and strengthen one of the University’s brand promises, namely, that the University is “grounded in faith.” Such a commitment would sustain an ethos of welcoming to campus people of all faiths, or no faith, as the University has always done. He will invite participants to consider an attitude of “and”: faith and reason, intellectual rigor and spiritual formation, shaping character and developing skills as holistic components of the UF experience.
Reist served as College First Church of God’s senior pastor since 2002. Previously, he had served as pastor in Churches of God congregations in Middletown, Elizabethtown and Marysville (all in Pennsylvania) as well as administrator for Churches of God, General Conference and director of field education and admissions for Winebrenner Theological Seminary. He serves as a trustee on the University of Findlay Board of Trustees, on the Blanchard Valley Health System board, and as chair of the Board of Pensions, Churches of God, General Conference.
He received a Doctor of Ministry degree in 2004 from Gordon Cornwell Theological Seminary, South Hamilton, Massachusetts. His project was titled, “Audience Analysis and Adaption: Responding to the Challenge of Preaching in Multiple Settings.” Reist earned a Master of Divinity in 1976 from Winebrenner Theological Seminary, and a Bachelor of Arts in religion and philosophy from Findlay College in 1973.