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Calendar and Events

This lectureship was established in 1985 by the family of the late Rev. A. Eldon Palmquist, Covenant pastor and conference superintendent, in recognition of his lively, grace-filled preaching, interest in education, and loyalty and devotion to the cause of Christ. The first lectureship was presented in 1987.

2020 Palmquist Lecture

Rev. Dr. Frank A. Thomas

Wednesday, February 12
6:30 pm – 9:00 pm
Isaacson Chapel, Nyvall Hall

This event is free and open to the public.



6:30pm     Lecture One: 400 Years of African American Preaching: What Do These Words Mean? This lecture will explore four hundred year legacy of the genius, power, depth, and beauty of African American Preaching that has sustained African American people and made a significant contribution not only to African Americans but also to America and the world.
7:30pm     Break
8:00pm    Lecture Two: A Requiem – “I’m Happy Tonight: Four Qualities of Moral Imagination of Martin Luther King, Jr.” This lecture will explore Martin Luther King Jr.’s “moral imagination” contained in his last sermon, “I’ve Been to the Mountaintop,” delivered one night before his death, April 3, 1968, in Memphis, Tennessee.

About the Speaker

Rev. Dr. Frank A. Thomas

Rev. Dr. Frank A. Thomas
Rev. Dr. Frank A. Thomas

Dr. Thomas currently serves as the Nettie Sweeney and Hugh Th. Miller Professor of Homiletics at Christian Theological Seminary, Indianapolis, Indiana.  For many years, Thomas has also taught preaching to Doctoral and Masters level students at McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago, Illinois, and at Memphis Theological Seminary in Memphis, Tennessee. He is the CEO of Hope For Life International, Inc. With a long history of excellence in preaching and preaching method, Thomas was inducted into the prestigious Martin Luther King Jr. Board of Preachers of Morehouse College in April 2003. Recently Thomas became the director of the very first PhD program in African American Preaching and Sacred Rhetoric at Christian Theological Seminary.

Thomas’ latest book release from Abingdon Press is How to Preach a Dangerous Sermon, January 2018. He is the author of Introduction to the Practice of African American Preaching by Abingdon Press, November 2016; American Dream 2.0: A Christian Way Out of the Great Recession, Abingdon Press, August 2012. He also co-edited Preaching With Sacred Fire: An Anthology of African American Sermons, 1750 to the Present with Martha Simmons, published by W. W. Norton & Company in 2010. Thomas’ book, The Choice: Living Your Passion Inside Out, published by Hope For Life International Press October 2013. Click here for Rev. Dr. Thomas’ full bio.

Previous Lectures

  • 2019: Dr. Gloria White-Hammond & Dr. Ray Hammond, co-pastors of Bethel AME Church, Boston, MA. Their lectures can be viewed online here.
  • 2012: Dr. Gennifer B. Brooks, director of the Styberg Preaching Institute at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary
  • 2014: Dr. Nancy Lammers Gross, Arthur Sarell Rudd Associate Professor of Speech Communication in Ministry at Princeton Theological Seminary. Watch part one and part two of the 2014 Palmquist Lectures online at covchurch.tv.