Christopher Wells, Executive Director and Publisher

Dr. Christopher Wells is executive director and publisher of the Living Church Foundation, overseeing all of its publishing and teaching initiatives, fundraising, and staff. Christopher completed doctoral studies in historical theology at the University of Notre Dame and served as a lay leader in the Diocese of Northern Indiana before coming to the Living Church in 2009. He earned a BA at St. Olaf College and MAR at Yale Divinity School.

He is affiliate professor of theology at the General Theological Seminary and Nashotah House Theological Seminary, where he teaches courses on Augustine of Hippo, Thomas Aquinas, and Anglican ecclesiology. He has published articles on Aquinas and ecclesiology in various journals, and since 2011 has served as theological consultant to the Anglican-Roman Catholic Consultation in the U.S. (ARC-USA).

Christopher is a member of Church of the Incarnation in Dallas, and enjoys reading, running, gastronomy, Notre Dame football, and all the arts.

Mark Michael, Editor, The Living Church magazine

Fr. Michael is the editor of The Living Church and rector of St. Francis Episcopal Church in Potomac, Maryland. A native of rural western Maryland, he is a graduate of Duke University and Wycliffe Hall, Oxford. Before his current cure, he served congregations in Maryland, New York, and Virginia, and was assistant chaplain and a history and religion master at Saint James School. He and his wife, Allison, have two sons. In his spare time, he enjoys fishing and gardening.

John Schuessler, Managing Editor

John Schuessler is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin–Eau Claire where he studied journalism with a news and editorial emphasis. He has served on the staff of the Living Church Foundation for more than two decades, most of those years as managing editor. He is primarily responsible for editorial production of the foundation’s three publications (The Living Church, The Episcopal Musician’s Handbook, and Illuminations), but also oversees TLC’s website and has written many news and feature articles for the magazine. Mr. Schuessler is married and has four children.

Kirk Petersen, Associate Editor

Kirk Petersen has been an active Episcopalian for thirty years, and a professional communicator longer than that. After starting out as a reporter/editor for a small daily newspaper, he pursued a career in public relations and corporate communications at Merrill Lynch, Citigroup, and Finsbury, a New York City PR agency. He spent four years as a lay employee at two local Episcopal churches, and is thrilled to be back in the world of journalism. Kirk earned a bachelor’s degree in politics at Princeton University. He has two adult sons, and his wife, Nina Nicholson, is communications director for the Diocese of Newark.

Eugene R. Schlesinger, Editor for Covenant

Eugene R. Schlesinger is Lecturer in the Department of Religious Studies at Santa Clara University. He earned his Ph.D. in Systematic Theology from Marquette University, and his research has focused on the relationship between the church's liturgy and its mission, as well as the ongoing relevance of a theology of sacrifice for the contemporary church. He is the author of Missa Est! A Missional Liturgical Ecclesiology (Fortress Press, 2017), and Sacrificing the Church: Mass, Mission, and Ecumenism (Lexington Books/Fortress Academic, Fall 2019), and understands his vocation to be an Episcopalian who does Catholic theology.

In addition to his scholarship, Gene is a churchman and a family man. Before his doctoral studies and his entry into the Episcopal Church, he served in pastoral ministry, mainly at a church plant. He and his wife, Loren, just celebrated seventeen years of marriage, and together, they have two daughters, Joann and Evelyn.

Amber D. Noel, Associate Editor and Associate Director of The Living Church Institute

Amber D. Noel enjoys a suitably varied professional life, including ministry, the arts, education, and business. She is a graduate of Duke Divinity School (M.Div. ‘12) and has been a Living Church Institute Fellow at Virginia Theological Seminary as artist-in-residence (’19). Amber facilitates institutional growth and public engagement across the Living Church Foundation’s various ministries, from events to new publications, and directs and hosts The Living Church Podcast. She is the editor of the Daily Devotional and copy editor for essays and articles. Outside of work, she is the author of short fiction and plays and adoring auntie to a handful of children.

Samuel Cripps, Advertising Manager

Samuel Cripps is a seminarian at Nashotah House Theological Seminary and is pursuing the priesthood in The Episcopal Diocese of Dallas. Sam's professional background was helping to create alternative revenue streams for publishers around the country. Sam loves kayak fishing, record collecting, and Mariology. He lives in Nashotah, Wisconsin, with his wife, Lauren, and dog, Tennessee Jed.

Andrew Russell, Digital Media Manager

The Rev. Andrew Russell is a native of Little Rock, Arkansas. He is a graduate of Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee, where he earned a B.A. in multimedia production and Christian leadership, and of Beeson Divinity School in Birmingham, Alabama, where he earned his Master of Divinity. In addition to his work for The Living Church, Andrew serves on the faculty at a classical Christian school in Birmingham, where he teaches Bible and English literature. He has a deep love for the Church, Southern American literature, and all things analog. He lives in Birmingham with his wife, Anna.


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