Candler Dean Jan Love has announced two new appointments in Candler’s Episcopal and Anglican Studies Program (EASP). The Rev. Canon C. John Thompson-Quartey (left) and The Rev. Dr. Stuart Higginbotham (right) will join Candler in fall 2023, Thompson-Quartey as director of the program and professor in the practice of church leadership, and Higginbotham as assistant professor in the practice of spiritual formation and ministry, supervising the contextual education course for Episcopal and Anglican students.
The two appointments come as The Rev. Canon P. Lang Lowrey III, director of the Episcopal and Anglican Studies Program since 2015, steps away from his leadership position at Candler to focus his energies more fully on his roles in The Episcopal Church and his real estate development business. He will serve as director of the EASP through the summer, ensuring a smooth transition in leadership.
Love has high praise for Lowrey’s leadership of the EASP, noting that he leaves the program in a strong position.
“Lang Lowrey’s leadership of Candler’s Episcopal and Anglican Studies Program across the past eight years has been exemplary,” says Love. “His strategic vision and tireless networking and recruiting have positioned the program as a leading destination for Episcopal and Anglican students. He laid the groundwork for attracting future leaders the caliber of John Thompson-Quartey and Stuart Higginbotham, leaders who can continue to strengthen and grow the program.”
Love names as particular accomplishments Lowrey’s work in placing students in productive contextual education settings and mentoring them through the ordination process, as well as renaming the program, introducing “Anglican” into the title to reflect the full body of the Anglican Communion and attract diverse students to the school. He also cultivated a close relationship between Candler and the Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta, which has “benefited the school enormously,” she says.
Love consulted Candler faculty who belong to The Episcopal Church to nominate candidates for these positions. She and Lowrey worked together with The Right Rev. Robert C. Wright, bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta, to secure new leaders for the program.
“We are excited about Canon John Thompson Quartey’s and The Rev. Stuart Higginbotham’s new calls at Candler School of Theology,” says Wright. “It represents the convergence of their individual gifts and our ongoing commitment as a diocese to this mission-critical partnership.”
Thompson-Quartey has served as Canon for Ministry in the diocese of Atlanta since 2014. In this role, he initiated a plan for congregational vitality that culminated in the creation of the diocese’s College for Congregational Development. He has also worked to revitalize campus ministries and increase student participation, which has included the launch of three new campus ministries. Prior to arriving in Atlanta, Thompson-Quartey served as rector of St. Mary’s by-the-Sea Episcopal Church in Point Pleasant Beach, New Jersey, for nine years. He earned a bachelor of science degree from Rutgers University and a master of divinity from the General Theological Seminary in New York. He is trained in adaptive leadership through the Clergy Leadership Project, which equips experienced clergy with skills for navigating leadership challenges in parish ministry. He has held numerous leadership positions and is the current vice president for social justice for the National Brotherhood of St. Andrew.
Higginbotham has served as rector of Grace Episcopal Church in Gainesville, Georgia, since 2014. Ordained an Episcopal priest in 2008, he has served in many leadership roles within the Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta and has also led retreats and workshops throughout the United States. He earned a master of divinity from Columbia Theological Seminary and a certificate in Anglican studies and a doctor of ministry from The School of Theology at Sewanee, the University of the South. Higginbotham is the author of The Heart of a Calling: The Practice of Christian Mindfulness in Congregational Ministry (Crossroads, 2021) and co-editor of Contemplation and Communion: A Gathering of Fresh Voices for a Living Tradition (Crossroads, 2019).
“We at Candler couldn’t be more thrilled that these two will be joining our Episcopal and Anglican Studies Program this fall,” says Love. “Knowing that Lang is passing the baton into such capable hands gives me great confidence in the program’s future.”
Established in the 1970s, Candler’s Episcopal and Anglican Studies Program is a fellowship dedicated to equipping students for ministry in the Episcopal Church and all the churches in the Anglican Communion. Master of divinity students who are preparing for ordained parish ministry under the supervision of a bishop may earn a certificate in Episcopal and Anglican Studies and fulfill specific contextual education requirements by working in an Episcopal or Anglican parish for three years.