The University Baccalaureate Service took place on Saturday, May 11, at 10 a.m. in All Saints’ Chapel.

At the University Baccalaureate Service, honorary degrees of Doctor of Divinity were conferred upon The Rt. Rev. Susan Bunton Haynes and Episcopal priest and theologian Christoph Keller III. Keller then delivered the Baccalaureate address. His remarks can be read here.

Christoph Keller III is an Episcopal priest and theologian. A 1977 graduate of Amherst College, he holds a doctorate in Anglican studies from the General Theological Seminary in New York, where his field of emphasis was theology and science. His dissertation explains the compatibility between Christian faith and natural evolution. As a priest, he has served churches in Pine Bluff, Fort Smith, and Van Buren, Arkansas. From 2014-2020, he served as dean and rector of Trinity Episcopal Cathedral, Little Rock. In 2021 he published his first book, a collection of 12 homilies from funerals, titled Getting on Toward Home: And Other Sermons by the River. A second book, Homily for Darwin: Understanding Faith and Evolution, is forthcoming. In 2012, as an experiment, he started SUMMA: A Student Theological Debate Society, with 47 high school students from central Arkansas. SUMMA, whose theme is “speaking truth in love,” is now a summer program of the University of the South, drawing students from around the world.

The Rt. Rev. Susan Bunton Haynes is the 11th bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Southern Virginia and the diocese’s first female diocesan bishop. Born in Tampa, Florida, and raised in South Carolina, she earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of the South in 1981, a master’s degree from Middle Tennessee State University in 1989, and a master of divinity from Vanderbilt University Divinity School in 1993. Haynes was ordained to the priesthood in 2005 and became an associate priest at St. James Cathedral in South Bend, Indiana, rising to become the priest in charge before accepting a position as rector of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Mishawaka, where she served for 11 years. Haynes was elected to become the 11th bishop of the Diocese of Southern Virginia in September 2019.