University of Dubuque

Leicester Longden

Associate Professor of Evangelism and Discipleship
B.A., Lewis and Clark College; B.D., Union Theological Seminary; M.Phil., Ph.D., Drew University; joined UDTS faculty in 2001

Contact Info:
224 Severance | (563) 589-3634 |

"Evangelism has often been relegated by scholars to a minor place in the discipline of practical theology and by local churches to a mere committee on methods for adding members. My experience as a pastor and scholar has led me to see evangelism as an action of the church where theological and practical concerns must be kept in vital conversation and interaction. Theologically, evangelism requires fundamental reection on the apostolic identity and mission of the church. Practically, it includes not only the proclamation of the Gospel which announces the kingdom of God but also the ecclesial practices by which people are initially formed as disciples of Jesus Christ. In the increasingly pluralistic contexts of the twenty-rst century, pastors and congregations need a revitalized evangelism that announces Jesus as the Savior of the world and depends on the agency of the Holy Spirit as the chief teacher and energizer of the Church."

A Canadian who lives as a permanent alien resident in the U.S., Les Longden has been a pastor in a small rural church, and a Minister of Education and Senior Pastor in two large churches. His ecumenical experience includes teaching assignments in an Episcopal Prepatory School, a Roman Catholic college and diocese, and two United Methodist universities. As an ordained Elder in the United Methodist Church, Dr. Longden has served as a delegate to the General Conference, a columnist for the United Methodist News Service, and a participant in several national dialogues sponsored by the United Methodist General Commission on Church Unity and Inter-religious Concerns.

In addition to reviews and articles published in Catalyst, Circuit Rider, Methodist History, and The Michigan Christian Advocate, Dr. Longden has edited two volumes: The Wesleyan Theological Heritage: Essays of Albert C. Outler (co-edited with Thomas C. Oden) and Albert C. Outler Ecumenical Theologian. Future writing and research interests include an intellectual biography of Albert Outler, an historical study of Wesleyan practices of evangelism and catechesis with practical suggestions for local churches, and the exploration of the possibilities for evangelization as an ecumenical activity.