Community News


Posted: October 17, 2014 at 10:24 PM   /   by   /   comments (0)

Richard Davenport
Executive Director

richard-davenportRichard has a Master of Divinity degree from Boston University’s School of Theology (focusing on primitive Christian communities) and pursued Doctoral work in Adult Spirituality at San Francisco Theological Seminary. He served for two decades, on three continents, as a Chaplain in the U.S. Air Force taking early retirement as a lieutenant Colonel to serve for several years as Dean of Students at his alma mater. In 2003, he launched Higher Ground, a nationwide entrepreneurial educational ministry offering marriage and relationship programs and Bible conferences. In 2004 he became the Executive Director of Bible Study Seminars, a 501(c)(3) founded by Richard and a business partner. In 2013 he also began serving as corporate chaplain for a green energy company in Dallas and became one of the original “initiators” of the Cana Initiative ( In his home community of St. Louis, he has been involved in pioneering a new faith community and a number of bridge building and reconciling efforts. He is a sought after speaker in a variety of Christian as well as interfaith settings… including the annual teen gathering of Michael Beckwith’s Agape International Spiritual Center. More about Richard can be found on his professional website,

Sandy Wilder

Sandy is the Founder and Chief Listening Officer at Educare Unlearning Institute.  His heart and life reflect an amazing capacity for hearing others, nurturing their development, discovery of purpose, and realization of transformative moments. He began his journey as a professional soccer player, then a college coach, a resident counselor at Principia College, and then Assistant Dean. He then developed a very successful customer care system that was taught to numerous Fortune 500 companies. For more on Sandy’s work, visit

Rev Jaime Clark-Soles

New Testament Professor, Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX. Jaime is an ordained Baptist minister as well as a widely acknowledged authority on John and the New Testament. She has published widely in both church publications, on her blog, in major academic journals, and in several books. She is a sough after speaker who bridges her scholarship and pastoral concerns to contemporary culture and life.

Maryl Walters

has been active in interfaith work for over two decades. She has served as Chair of Cabinet for the very vibrant and active interfaith Partnership in St. Louis. She has traveled in Israel with an interfaith group that included Muslims, Bahai, Jews, Protestants, and Catholics. A graduate of Eden Theological Seminary in St. Louis she represents her denomination on one of the commissions of the National Council of Churches. Known for the use of drama and humor to reach young people, she has long taught Sunday School and continues an over four decade long healing ministry.

Maria Griswold

maria-griswoldMaria Griswold will graduate in May with a Master of Arts in Pastoral Studies degree from Eden Theological Seminary in St. Louis. She also has taken classes at the Aquinas Institute and Educare Unlearning Institute. Her academic pursuits have focused on spiritual direction as well as the building of Christian community. In the spring of 2014, she presented a paper on The Influence of I Corinthians 7 on Ethics Regarding Sexuality and Gender Roles in Christian Science and Other Churches for the Central States Regional Meeting of the Society of Biblical Literature. She recently resigned from 15 years of service as an administrative assistant at the Principia School to complete her thesis project which has included designing and implementing a model of mutual spiritual direction. She and her husband Michael are recent empty nesters, but they love staying in touch with their son and daughter. Maria enjoys working jigsaw puzzles, playing games, and walking. Her most recent diversion has been joining her kids in playing Pokemon Go!

David Corbitt

david-corbittDavid earned a Master’s degree in Theological Studies from Eden Theological Seminary in St Louis. David’s life-long work and study has been devoted to understanding others’ faiths, beliefs, and doctrines in order to communicate better and more effectively with them. In 1996, he began his part-time Christian Science practice and later was Journal-Listed. For six years, David served as Committee on Publication for Missouri. He continues working with ministers from all faiths in enhancing their Bible study seminars and has served as visiting faculty at Principia College. He serves as a team member on the Christian Science Christian Ecumenical committee for TMC. David is married to Susan and has three daughters in St Louis.

John Gilmore

is a Los Angeles based composer and arranger whose work has been featured in television and films such as Cold Case, Rescue 911, Identity, and The Midas Touch. Active in restoring and retaining music and arts in the Burbank public schools, he coaches Glee-like choirs and is music director and pianist for the popular jazz group Mike Gurley and the Nightcaps as well for the contemporary inspirational sound of Living Love: Christian Science in Action. John is also organist for Thirteenth Church of Christ, Scientist in Hollywood. More about John and his music can be found at

Natalie Davenport

is completing her last semester at Principia College where she is majoring in Theatre and minoring in Religion and Dance. She sings at campus recitals as well as at her local branch church, and has sung at the Asilomar conference in recent years. While at Principia, she has performed in four dance productions, choreographing original pieces in three of them. She is also the Director of Principia’s Public Affairs Conference this spring focusing on global youth empowerment.

Mike Griswold

mike-griswoldMike is a Saint Louis native, whose interests have always centered on Music and Nature. Mike has degrees in both Music and Environmental Education and has worked as a Naturalist, Park Ranger, and is currently a Band director at Principia School. Seven years ago, while on a “Family Sabbatical” in Costa Rica, Mike started composing music. When the family returned to Saint Louis, Mike became involved with Next Generation Fellowship and Brentwood Christian Science Church, and was soon asked to be Music Director for both organizations.

Over the past six years Mike has written and arranged over 35 songs and hymns for worship and has performed at the 2014 Midwest Church Alive Summit in Chicago as well as at the Saint Louis Interfaith Partnership Thanksgiving Concerts. Some of Mike’s songs are available on his 2013 CD release, “Take Off Your Shoes: Songs for the Spiritual Journey.” Coming soon, a selection of sheet music arrangements for some of his more popular solos.

Alex Cook

wears many artistic hats. He is a musician, muralist, sculptor, and storyteller, among other things. Alex has painted over 50 murals in the US and overseas. He serves as a chaplain at the Nashua Street Jail in his hometown of Boston, MA. He has been writing and recording music since 1992, and the music has always had a spiritual edge and an eye towards the eternal. His lyrics cherish the Bible and Christ in a powerful way. More about Alex and his music can be found or

Rev Doctor Ricky Porter

has been a Presbyterian pastor since 1983 and a student of Christian Science since 1995. A 2005 recipient of a grant from the Lily Endowment for his work on Christian spiritual healing, he is currently pastoring a church in Georgia and has served on the Board of Advisors for the Mary Baker Eddy Library for the Betterment of Humanity.


Virginia ‘Ginny’ Stopfel

received a Master of Arts in Bible Education from Andover Newton Theological School outside of Boston. For many years she was active in supporting the spiritual development of young people and she serves as the supervisor of a major public Bible Exhibit in Boston’s historic Back Bay. Ginny is currently very involved in prison ministry. She wrote our Foundation Stones volume on “The Prophets”.


Ann Edwards

has a Master of Theological Studies degree from the Emmanuel College of Victoria University in Toronto, as well as a Master of Music Performance degree (Piano) from the University of Toronto. Currently chair of the Piano Department at the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto, she has served on its Board of Examiners for two decades. Soloing at her local church, she is also a frequent contributor on the Bible to her denomination’s monthly publication. Ann wrote our Foundation Stones volume on Acts 9-28.

Deanna Mummert

completed her Master’s degree in Biblical Studies from Earlham School of Religion in Richmond, Indiana. For many years she was an executive in the energy industry, leading energy acquisition teams. She then taught corporate ethics in the MBA program at Johns Hopkins University. She now devotes herself to a full-time healing ministry through prayer. Deanna wrote our Foundation Stones volume on Proverbs.



Helen Mathis
Foundation Stones, Editor-in-Chief

helen-mathisHelen earned her Master’s degree in Biblical Studies at the Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, California. Her past experience includes four years as Director of The Foundation for Biblical Research in New Hampshire – a philanthropy that offered Bible workshops for lay people and clergy of any religious background, and three years teaching Bible and Christian history at Principia College. She is the editor of the BSS Bible study curriculum entitled Foundation Stones®, and teaches Bible around the country.

Madelon Maupin

madelon-maupinMadelon earned a Master of Theological Studies from San Francisco Theological Seminary. She leads regular trips to the Middle East and is a Trustee of the Crisler Library in Ephesus, Turkey. She is frequently published in the Christian Science periodicals, speaks widely on the Bible, and leads a dynamic and diverse Bible study through her local branch church. She is a nationally known expert on organizational leadership.

AmiLynne Carroll

1-15Founder and Chief Travel Partner at the Realization Academy brings forth her experience as an active participant in this thing called Life to support her personal calling: the healing, liberation and full awakening of all that lives. Childhood and early adulthood brought the requisite academic acquisitions (Masters in Public Affairs from Indiana University) and accelerated career accomplishments within the Financial Services world. However, early 2007 brought a new journey; broken and fighting for her life – diagnosed with Stage 4 brain cancer, the prognosis was bleak at best. AmiLynne embraced the darkness; questioning, seeking, listening and learning to love – discovering clarity from a place she had long since forgotten as Grace guided her on the long journey back to Life. Now AmiLynne is answering the call to give back as she serve the role of Travel Partner as a Certified Holistic Life Coach supporting others as they seek to reclaim freedom, peace and prosperity in their own life’s journey.

Rev Danielle Shroyer

long-time pastor of Journey Church, Dallas, TX and author of The Boundary Breaking God, Danielle is a national leader, speaker, and writer within Emerging Christianity, a community of pastors and activists re-thinking traditional Christian doctrines, the functions and character of local church and its engagement with the larger community. Journey Church is made up almost entirely of young adults under 40, and reflects many approaches that give hope to the future of Christianity.

Laura LaPointe

has a Master of Divinity degree with honors from Andover Newton Theological School with a focus on worship, theology, and the arts. She has preached and been a lead singer and soloist at churches of various denominations. She is very active in working with urban youth and inmates, and is a member and Sunday School teacher at First Church of Christ, Scientist in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Her take on the Ten Commandments through slam poetry is just one of several pieces she has recently done for TMC youth.

Shirley Paulson

is pursuing a second graduate degree in Christian Theological Studies and continuing a two decade long public healing ministry – which included serving as the Committee on Publication for Illinois. As a member of the Christian Science Board of lectureship, she focuses on addressing academic communities, conservative Christian colleges, liberal universities, and non-Christian-Science church study groups.

Jenny Grace Morris

jm-for-personal-ad-1114-blueJenny Grace Morris brings her experience as a Master certified Christian Life coach to her performance as a Biblical storyteller. She trains students to become Christian coaches and has co-authored the “Relationship Communication Specialist certification”. She studied both acting and speech in NYC and during one class she was given the assignment to recite something from either Shakespeare or The Bible. Feeling more comfortable with the latter, Jenny chose I Corinthians Chapter 13. No one in the class had heard it before and didn’t know its’ source. They were very surprised that it came from the Bible and several people commented on how healing it was for them to hear. Jenny’s ‘inspiration to help others through a career as coach and storyteller evolved from this experience.

Dwight Oyer

is a Grammy-nominated recording engineer who has owned his own recording and publishing business in Denver, Boston, and St. Louis. A noted performer and recording artist in his own right, Dwight’s gentle instrumentation and rich vocal interpretation of beloved hymns have brought inspiration and healing to people around the world. Dwight became Musician in residence for the Asilomar Bible Conference in 2005.

Justin Froese

is an Austin-based, singer-guitarist with a mellow, bluesy-style that fuses elements of folks, art rock, blues, improvisation and pop sensibilities into a freshly engaging and energetic sound. “Between the head and the heart” is where Justin describes the source of his creative intuition, and his music has moved people deeply at Church Alive Meetings and Youth Gatherings. More about him can be found at

Jonathan Kidder

inspires unconditional love in unconventional ways. Through music, comedy and puppetry Jonathan embodies characters that shed spiritual insight. Jonathan has created Bible-themed coloring books, television programming, and pioneered a children’s program through the CS Board of Lectureship. Jonathan has also puppeteered for Disney, the Jim Henson Company, and The Agape International Spiritual Center where he actively participates, prays and plays. More about Jonathan and his work can be found at

Rabbi David Louis

is an American Jew who embraced Orthodox Judaism following his college years and is now an Orthodox Rabbi living in Israel. He has taken Christian Science class instruction and cherishes the beautiful relationship he sees between the Old Testament and Mary Baker Eddy’s writings. Rabbi Louis teaches Jewish philosophy and the mystical tradition of Kabala, and is an accomplished composer and musician – pop to classical, sitar to trumpet. He is also an avid painter.

Mary Jane Chaignot

received a Master’s degree in Biblical Studies from Luther Seminary in Minnesota. Author of a highly praised series on the Gospel of Mark, that ran for twenty-two months in The Christian Science Journal, she is also one of the primary researchers and writers for both The Researched Bible Guide and Mary Jane runs an assisted living residence for adults. Mary Jane wrote our Foundation Stones volume on Mark.

Susan Humble

is currently enrolled in the Ph.D program in Biblical Interpretation and Early Christianity at Denver University School of Theology. In 2005 she graduated with honors and the Presidential Award with a Master’s degree in Biblical Studies from Claremont School of Theology in southern California. She teaches Bible classes and writes for religious publications. For 23 years she was a Vice President of Investments for Morgan Stanley. Susan wrote our Foundation Stones volume on The Epistles of John.

Christa Kreutz

has a Master’s in Theological Studies from Eden Theological Seminary. She has taught undergraduate religion courses at a collge near her home in St. Louis and is a regular contributor to a national religious magazine. Christa is in the process of writing our Foundation Stones volume on Matthew.


Cindy and David Martin

are Landscape Architects and naturalists who explore spiritual themes while leading participants on nature explorations at Asilomar. They are life-long Bible students and both volunteer as prison chaplains ministering to inmates at State prisons. Cindy has a master’s in counseling and education and has taught environmental planning as well as served as a school counselor. David is an expert in sustainable land restoration and environmental processes. Cindy and David conduct InspireSight Bible nature metaphor programs which explore the spiritual substance of the universe and man’s role in creation care. They can be reached at