May 25, 2023

Big Day for Klemme Family at Eden Commencement

Missouri Mid-South Conference (MMSC) treasured friend Norma Klemme received a Doctor of Humane Letters at Eden Seminary’s 173rd commencement May 19.

Before the ceremony, Norma and her husband Rev. Armin Klemme also received a surprise announcement that family and friends established a new Eden Seminary scholarship in their name.

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A resident of Union, Mo., Klemme is active in food security and environmental justice through her congregation, Zion UCC, multiple Franklin County organizations, and MMSC.

She was one of four outstanding leaders who received honorary degreees and awards as part of the graduation ceremony.

Eden Commencement Honors Three Others

Doctor of Divinity recipients included commencement speaker Rev. Muriel Johnson and Rabbi Howard Kaplansky.

  • Rev. Johnson is CEO of Bishops INK LLC. She is retired from 20 years as Executive Regional Associate Minister for the American Baptist Churches of the Great Rivers Region.
  • Rabbi Kaplansky is Rabbi Emeritus of the United Hebrew Congregation in St. Louis and served as adjunct faculty at Eden Seminary for two decades.

The Samuel D. Press Service Award was given to Rev. Dr. Veronica Richardson posthumously for outstanding service to the Eden and wider communities. Her family was present to receive the award on her behalf.

Additonal Commencement Highlights

In her commencement speech, Rev. Johnson encouraged graduates, family, friends, and churches to explore what they believe and why they believe it; use the tools of their education to point out injustices; and respond to their call to become God’s beloved community.

Eden Seminary graduates were awarded degrees of Master of Divinity, Master of Arts in Professional Studies, Master of Theological Studies, and Doctor of Ministry.

To honor the Klemmes through their newly established scholarship, you can donate to Eden here.
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