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Michael Kinnamon

General Secretary

Few National Council of Churches leaders have had more extensive ecumenical experience than the Rev. Dr. Michael Kinnamon.

By the time Kinnamon was elected NCC General Secretary in November 2007, he was already an internationally recognized scholar and leader in the church unity movement.

He was General Secretary of the Consultation on Church Union, which became Churches Uniting in Christ, from 1999 to 2002. He was executive secretary of the WCC's Commission on Faith and Order from 1980 to 1983 and had a major role in drafting the World Council of Churches' major planning document, "Toward a Common Understanding and Vision of the WCC."

Before assuming his current office at the National Council of Churches, Michael Kinnamon was the Allen and Dottie Miller Professor of Mission, Peace and Ecumenical Studies at Eden Theological Seminary, St. Louis, Mo., where he had served since 2000. He was professor of Theology and Ecumenical Studies at Lexington, Ky., Theological Seminary from 1988 to 2000 and was dean of the seminary from 1988 to 1998.

Kinnamon was Assistant Professor of Theology at Christian Theological Seminary, Indianapolis, from 1983 to 1988 and Acting Dean from 1986 to 1988. He was a visiting professor at United Theological College and South Asian Theological Institute, Bangalore, India, in 1987 and 1997.

Before he was named to head the NCC staff, Kinnamon was a member of the Council's Governing Board and chair of the Council's Justice and Advocacy Commission. He oversaw the commission's development of resolutions and statements on a wide range of justice and peace issues and was the primary drafter of  the NCC's current Strategic Plan.

He chaired the NCC's Ecclesiology Study Task Force from 1993 to 1997. He has been a featured speaker at such ecumenical gatherings as the National Workshops on Christian Unity and Ecumenical Advocacy Days in DC.

Kinnamon earned the Ph.D. degree from the University of Chicago Divinity School in 1980 in the field of religion and literature. He studied at Tel Aviv University from 1969 to 1970. His A.B. degree is from Brown University in 1971.

Michael Kinnamon has written extensively on the ecumenical movement, most recently, The Vision of the Ecumenical Movement and How it has Been Impoverished by its Friends (Chalice Press).

He wrote the official report of the Seventh Assembly of the World Council of Churches (WCC), and he is the co-editor of The Ecumenical Movement: An Anthology of Key Texts and Voices, a volume widely regarded as an essential tool for students of ecumenism.

Kinnamon has made important contributions to two other staples of ecumenical literature, The History of the Ecumenical Movement and the Dictionary of the Ecumenical Movement.

Kinnamon was ordained in 1976 and he has ministerial standing in the Disciples of Christ and the International Council of Community Churches.

Michael Kinnamon has been active in the mission and ministries of his denomination and has been a frequent speaker at Disciples and United Church of Christ national and regional assemblies, ministers gatherings and special conferences including the Disciples Peace Fellowship and the North American Pacific Asian Disciples.

Kinnamon has two daughters, Anna and Leah.

(Click on picture above for a 300 dpi version.)

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