Theological Studies Faculty

Sara Patterson
Sara Patterson

Sara Patterson

Associate Professor of Theological Studies

(812) 866-7305


Dr. Patterson teaches courses in theology, history of Christianity, and religion in the Americas. Patterson's current research project investigates the stories surrounding Leonard Knight's Salvation Mountain (see link below), a piece of outsider, religious art in the California desert. In her work Patterson argues that Knight is akin to the early Christian desert fathers who escaped to the desert in order to experience God more fully. Just like the desert fathers, Knight has pilgrims who follow him into the desert seeking out the wisdom he offers. These pilgrims believe that Knight is a modern-day prophet of sorts whose wisdom includes a critique of capitalist materialism and a challenge to intra- and inter-religious divisions. Knight offers a message of divine love for all humans. Pilgrims travel hundreds, sometimes thousands, of miles to enter Knight's constructed world that attempts to embody his message of God's love for humanity. In her project Patterson is examining the ways that sight, sound, and touch operate in the exchange between the artist and his visitors. It is in the exchange of stories and visions of an alternative world that both Knight and pilgrims to Salvation Mountain construct sacred space together. In 2010-2011 Patterson received a Luce Fellowship from the Society of Arts in Religious and Theological Studies for this project.

In all of her work Patterson investigates the intersections of religious experience, place and community. She also teaches and writes about how gender, race and ethnicity affect religious experiences and religious communities. In 2012 she and her co-author Amy K. Hoyt received an Award of Excellence for their Gender & History article titled "Mormon Masculinity: Changing Gender Expectations in the Era of Transition from Polygamy to Monogamy, 1890-1920."


Ph.D., Claremont Graduate University; M.A.T.S., Claremont School of Theology; B.A., Denison University
Dave Cassel
Dave Cassel

Dave Cassel

Professor of Theological Studies

(812) 866-6747


J. David Cassel teaches courses in the areas of biblical studies, the history of biblical interpretation, New Testament Greek, C.S. Lewis, religious themes in young adult literature, theology and the environment, and theology and the arts. He is a strong supporter of off-campus study, and he regularly teaches courses in Israel and Italy. Cassel's research interests include studies in the early church, the history of the interpretation of the Adam and Eve story, the theological understanding of sin and Christianity and nature.


Ph.D. University of Virginia, M.Div. Princeton Theological Seminary, B.A. Grinnell College

Teaching Areas / Expertise / Specializations:

Early Church
History of Biblical Interpretation
Theology and the Arts
Theology and the Environment
C.S. Lewis
Early Christianity in Italy
The Holy Land
The Theology of Sin


"Principles of Exegesis Governing Didymus the Blind's Interpretation of Genesis 3" - article submitted for publication.

"Destruction of Jerusalem," "Philo" and "Sophia" in the New Westminster Dictionary of Church History. Louisville: Westminster/John Knox, 2008.

"Patristic Interpretation of Isaiah." As Those Who Are Taught: The Interpretation of Isaiah from the LXX to the SBL (edited by Claire Mathews-McGinnis and Patricia Hull). Atlanta: SBL Press, 2006, 145-170.

"Patristic and Rabbinic Interpretations of Genesis 3 - A Case Study in Contrasts." Studia Patristica Vol. XXXIX. Leuven: Peeters, 2006, 203-211.

"Who Needs All These Bibles?" Covenant Companion, May 2002.

"Cyril of Alexanderia as Educator." In Dominico Eloquio - In Lordly Eloquence: Essays on Patristic Exegesis in Honor of Robert Louis Wilken. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2002, 348-368.

"Key Principles in Cyril of Alexandria's Exegesis." Studia Patristica, Vol. XXXVII. Leuven: Peeters, 2001, 413-420.

"Communist Plots and Loose Livers: The Story behind Five of the Most Popular English Translations of the Bible." Covenant Companion, February 2001.

"Top 10 Saints." Covenant Companion, November 1999.

"Cyril of Alexandria." The Encyclopedia of Christianity (eds. Erwin Fahlbusch ... et al.) Grand Rapids: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1999.

"Response to Scot McKnight." Ex Auditu, Volume 14, 1998.

"Stewardship: Experiencing and Expressing God's Nurturing Love."
American Baptist Quarterly, March, 1998.

"Seven Short Devotionals." The Covenant Home Altar, April-June, 1998.

"Defending the Cannibals." Christian History February, 1998 (reprinted as part of the SIRS Renaissance Computer Data Base for Libraries and Schools, September 1998).

"Defenders of the Faith." in the Christian History study
guide, The Early Church, 1995.

"Cyril of Alexandria: Champion of Christology." Covenant Companion, September 1994.

"Athanasius: Advocate for Equality within the Godhead." Covenant Companion, August 1994.

"Origen of Alexandria: Saint or Heretic?" Covenant Companion, July 1994.

"Irenaeus of Lyons: Defining and Protecting Orthodoxy." Covenant Companion, June 1994.

"Justin Martyr: Defending the Faith until Death." Covenant Companion, May 1994.

"Saints, Heroes, and Heretics." Covenant Companion, April 1994.

"Adult Bible Study Materials Review." Chicago: Department of Discipleship and Christian Education, Evangelical Covenant Church, 1988 (revised edition, 1990).

"Rhythm and Rainbows: A Unique Outreach Ministry." Covenant
Companion, March 1986 (Reprinted in JED Share Magazine, June 1986).

"Fit for the Battle: A Four Part Series on the book of Joshua."
Covenant Companion, August, September, October, and November 1984.

"Retired but not Through." Covenant Companion, May 15, 1983.

"The Covenant Baptismal Debate: A Review and a Proposal." Narthex, September 1, 1981.

"To Build or not to Build?" Covenant Companion, October 1, 1980.

"Mary Who?" Covenant Companion, April 1, 1980.

"New Covenant Sings the New Covenant." Covenant Companion,
February 1, 1980.
Michael Duffy
Michael Duffy

Michael Duffy

Professor of Theological Studies

(812) 866-6748


Mike Duffy grew up in Connecticut and spent many summers and weekends working on a neighbor's dairy farm. He still loves New England. After bouncing up and down the east coast going to school, he was pastor of a United Church of Christ church in Virginia for a decade. He came to Hanover in 1995. In his free time, he enjoys reading, hiking, working out, contemplating collecting rare books, and trying to remember how to play guitar.


Ph.D. University of Virginia, M.Div. Harvard Divinity School, M.A. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, B.A. University of Massachusetts at Amherst

Teaching Areas / Expertise / Specializations:

Theological Ethics
Sexual Ethics
Theological Epistemology
Thomas Merton
Christian Theologies of Vocation
Moral Decision-making
Great Spiritual Figures
Great Spiritual Issues
The Virgin Mary
Medical Ethics
Images of God
Hope and Despair


Making Sense of Sex: Responsible Decision Making for Young Adults (Louisville: Westminster John Knox Press), 2011.

"Atheism: A Christian Response," and accompanying leader's guide for discussions, at, 2008.

"Discerning When to Lead," Clergy Journal 84:8, July/August, 2008, 3-5.

The Skeptical, Passionate Christian: Tools for Living Faithfully in an Uncertain World (Louisville, Westminster John Knox Press), 2006.

Op-ed pieces published in Louisville's Courier-Journal: a piece on conjoined twins, "Ladan and Lelah"; a review of Wendell Berry's Citizenship Papers (Shoemaker & Hoard, 2003), and a review of Jon Krakauer's Under the Banner of Heaven: A Survey of Violent Faith (Doubleday, 2003), 2003.

"Guidance for Authentic Living in the Mystery Novels of Laurie R. King," 32 pages, 2002. Analysis and discussion booklet for the 88 schools in Lilly Endowment's PTEV initiative.

"Constructing a Theology of Vocation," in Inquiries: The quarterly publication from the Center for Free Inquiry [of Hanover College], 2001, 6-11.

"Vocation in the Modern World: Our Changing Society Compels Us to Think Theologically About Work," in Hanover Quarterly, 2001, 24-27.

Review of Siegfried Mandel's Nietzsche and the Jews: Exaltation and Denigration, in Shofar: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Jewish Studies, 19:1, 2000, 166-168.

"A.I.D.S.: The Challenge to the Christian Community," in Religious Education, 83:2, 1988, 190-200.

"Nietzsche's Attitudes Toward the Jews," in Journal of the History of Ideas, 49:2, 1988, 301-318. Co-authored with Willard Mittelman.

"Abortion and Pro-life Feminism," a review of Sidney Callahan's "Abortion and the Sexual Agenda: A Case for Pro-Life Feminism," in Biolaw Update, 1986.

Review of Stanley Hauerwas' Suffering Presence, in Biolaw Update, 1986, 183-185.
Krista E Hughes
Krista E Hughes

Krista E Hughes

Assistant Professor of Theological Studies

(812) 866-6749


Krista Hughes teaches courses in contemporary theologies, addressing issues such as religious pluralism, economic justice, gender and feminism, and postmodern models of God. In her research, she works at the intersection of process-relational theology, feminist theories and theologies and Continental philosophy. Hughes' current projects include a reimagining of the doctrine of grace and an inquiry into the relation between beauty and justice, both of which relate to her broader interests in theopoetics and theological aesthetics.


Ph.D., Drew University; M.Div., Vanderbilt Divinity School; M.A., Vanderbilt University; B.A. Wofford College
Karl Lampley

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