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Religious Studies

David Norse-Thomas ’08 Named Outstanding Young Alumnus

January 24, 2018

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David Norse-Thomas ’08 who majored in religious studies has been named the Lewis & Clark 2018 Outstanding Young Alumnus and will be honored at this spring’s honors banquet.

David grew up in Sherwood, Oregon, exploring the natural beauty of the Pacific Northwest. A religious studies major at L&C, David delved deeply into Biblical Studies, and the liberating legacy of the Reformed Christian Tradition. Studying abroad in Scotland with Kim Stafford, David traveled to the Isle of Iona, a remote western Isle, and learned about the peace and justice work, and radical hospitality towards queer people by the Iona community. After graduating from L&C, David volunteered at the Communities Camas Outdoor Center, creating community in a wild, ecologically minded place with high-risk, high-promise youth. That fall he began his studies at Princeton Theological Seminary, focusing on Pastoral Care and Counseling, Community Organizing, and Adaptive Leadership.

In 2010, David began worshiping at Broad Street Ministry (BSM) in Philadelphia, a broad-minded, progressive faith community that, through creative worship and radical hospitality, welcomes congregants dedicated to transforming our world. During the week BSM welcomes guests experiencing poverty and homelessness to a heavenly banquet prepared by superb chefs and served at round tables to foster community. BSM also offered a variety of services delivered using a trauma-informed, harm reduction model.

David was ordained to work at BSM in 2014, and began a “faith and doubt spirituality group” for LGBTQ+ young people, along with creating an LGBTQ+ Fellowship. In 2015, David began studying as a Couples and Family Therapist with the Council for Relationships, and in September of 2017 moved with his husband, R. Eric Thomas, to serve as the Pastor of Maryland Presbyterian Church in Towson, Maryland, a progressive, revitalizing faith community.

Read more about the event at our alumni site.

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