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2023 Graduation Ceremony Highlights

2023 Graduation Ceremony Highlights

We are delighted to share with you the highlights of the Institute of Lutheran Theology’s 2023 Graduation Service, held on June 15th in Brookings, SD. This memorable event brought together our esteemed graduates, their families, board members, faculty, staff, and other distinguished guests to celebrate the culmination of years of hard work, dedication, and spiritual growth.

We extend our heartfelt congratulations to the six outstanding individuals who received their well-deserved degrees during the graduation service:

  • Hailey Halmstad – Master of Divinity
  • David Knefelkamp – Master of Sacred Theology
  • Abdul Messiah – Master of Arts
  • Sharon (Chere) Riedel – Master of Divinity
  • Marc Lapointe – Doctor of Ministry
  • Corey Jay Smith – Doctor of Ministry

These graduates have demonstrated exceptional commitment to their studies and have exhibited profound understanding of Lutheran theology. As they embark on their respective paths, we pray that God’s blessings accompany them and guide them as they share the word of God with the world.

The Graduation Service was graced by two remarkable speakers who shared their wisdom and insights with the ILT community. Dr. Dennis Bielfeldt, our esteemed President, delivered the Commencement Address, inspiring the graduates and attendees with his thought-provoking words. We are deeply grateful for his leadership and dedication to the Institute.

Furthermore, we were honored to welcome Teresa Peters, an ILT alumna, who delivered the Alumni Representative Address. Teresa’s presence and uplifting message reminded us of the lifelong impact of an ILT education and the importance of fostering a strong community of support and mentorship.

The event was not only a celebration of our graduates’ achievements but also a testament to the unity and solidarity within the ILT community. Attendees from far and wide gathered to be part of this special occasion, many of whom had also participated in the week-long campus events preceding the graduation service. The Christ School of Theology’s 2023 Theologian in Residence Conference and the alumni picnic were both enriching experiences that further fostered a spirit of intellectual curiosity, collaboration, and camaraderie.

Following the graduation service, a joyful banquet and celebration took place, providing an opportunity for everyone to mingle, reminisce, and extend their congratulations to the graduates. It was heartening to witness the genuine connections and bonds formed within our community.

Once again, we congratulate our graduates for their remarkable accomplishments. They have exemplified the values and principles that define the Institute of Lutheran Theology, and we have no doubt that they will continue to make a significant impact in their ministries and vocations.

May God bless each graduate abundantly as they embark on their unique journeys, equipped with the knowledge, faith, and compassion they acquired during their time at ILT.

Congratulations, Graduates!


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