Alumna Rev. Marti Soper to Lead Sept. 16 Service of Thanksgiving

Annual service honors new faculty and staff at Perkins School of Theology

DALLAS (SMU) – Rev. Dr. Martha Anne (Marti) Soper will lead worship Wednesday, Sept. 16, during the Service of Thanksgiving for the Appointment of New Faculty Members, Administrative Leaders, and Staff. The service will begin at 11:30 a.m. in Perkins Chapel.

 Rev. Marti Soper (M.Div. '98)

Rev. Soper (M.Div. ’98), who now serves as director of the Center for Leadership Development of the North Texas Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church,  was employed in the business world for many years before entering ordained ministry. While attending Perkins School of Theology, Marti was Youth Minister at Arapaho United Methodist Church for four years. She served as Associate Pastor at Arapaho for six years before being appointed to Greenland Hills United Methodist Church in 2004.

The service is an important ritual occasion in which the community honors the work that its various members do and encourages itself to see that work as offering to God.

Staff members being recognized at the service include: 
  • The Rev. Dr.  Paul Barton, Director, Course of Study, Mexican American and Hispanic-Latino/a Church Ministries Program, and Professor of Christian History and Missiology.

  • The Rev. Dr. O. Wesley Allen, Lois Craddock Perkins Professor of Preaching

  • The Rev. Dr. Priscilla Pope-Levison, Associate Dean for External Programs and Professor of Minsterial Studies

  • Mr. Matt Jacob, Associate Director of Public Affairs and Alumni/ae Relations

  • Ms. Katharine Chandler, Curator of Special Collections, Bridwell Library

  • Ms. Julie Bice, Assistant to the Director of Bridwell Library

Dr. William B. Lawrence, Dean of the Perkins School of Theology, will lead a Prayer of Thanksgiving and Intercession. Dr. Mark W. Stamm, Professor of Christian Worship at Perkins, will be liturgist for the service, and Dr. Christopher S. Anderson, Associate Professor of Sacred Music at Perkins, will provide music.


Perkins School of Theology, founded in 1911, is one of five official University-related schools of theology of The United Methodist Church. Degree programs include the Master of Divinity, Master of Sacred Music, Master of Theological Studies, Master of Arts in Ministry, Master of Theology, Doctor of Ministry, and Doctor of Pastoral Music (June 2016) as well as the Ph.D., in cooperation with The Graduate Program in Religious Studies at SMU’s Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences.