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Tue, Sep 26


Nazarene Theological Seminary

Preachers' Conference

The 2023 Hugh C. Benner Preachers' Conference features Keynote Speaker Dr. Dawn Ottoni-Wilhelm along with Rev. Jacobi Campbell, Rev. Ruben Villarreal, and Dr. Michael Jackson discussing Creating New Worlds with Words. Click Learn More for more information, then scroll down for the link to register.

Preachers' Conference
Preachers' Conference

Time & Location

Sep 26, 2023, 8:30 AM CDT – Sep 27, 2023, 12:30 PM CDT

Nazarene Theological Seminary, 1700 E Meyer Blvd, Kansas City, MO 64131, USA

About The EVENT



There will be worship, workshops, and plenary sessions all centered around growing to become better preachers who use our words to create new life and worlds rather than using our words for destruction and oppression.

Speakers include Dr. Dawn Ottoni-Wilhelm, Rev. Jacobi Campbell,  Rev. Ruben Villareal, and Dr. Michael Jackson.

Dr. Dawn Ottoni-Wilhelm

Dawn is ordained in the Church of the Brethren and has served as a hospital chaplain and as a pastor. She currently teaches preaching and worship at Bethany Theological Seminary. Her courses include Preaching, Theopoetics, and Society; Poet and Prophet; Patterns of Worship; and Preaching the Gospel. Her recent publications include resources for preaching (Preaching God’s Transforming Justice), the intersection of pastoral care and justice (Preaching Prophetic Care: Building Bridges to Justice), and international preaching (Preaching the Fear of God in a Fearful World). Dawn is currently writing a book on preaching and theopoetics, related to the theme of Creating New Worlds with Words. She is the senior editor of the journal Homiletic, and she served as the president of the international association of homileticians, Societas Homiletica, from 2016 to 2018. As a trained spiritual director, she also accompanies her students, pastors, and others in their spiritual lives. Dawn is married, and her family includes three young adult children and their spouses. She also enjoys long walks in nature, music, and outdoor swimming.

Rev. Jacobi Campbell

Rev. Campbell leads as the Senior Pastor at Bell Road Church of the Nazarene. Bell Road is an intragenerational and multicultural church in urban south Nashville. As a means of positively engaging issues impacting our city and nation, he serves as a Council Member of the Justice Circle Nashville under the pillar of Policing and Community Safety. Pastor Jacobi is a Civil and equitable rights leader in Nashville known for his ability to bring all sides to the table. In 2022, he published his best-selling book, And I Leave You With This, a 30-day call to the practical application of the Word of God. Pastor Jacobi Campbell serves as the South East Regions Young Christian Clergy representative, and he serves as a Steer Committee member of the NOW Movement. Pastor Jacobi will say the most important part about him is his wife: Sade Campbell and their three daughters: Sanna, Cai, and Nala.

Rev. Ruben Villarreal

Ruben Villarreal is a church planter, pastor, author, spiritual entrepreneur, and speaker. He is the Founding Pastor of ThornCreek Church, which is in north Denver. ThornCreek is known for its innovation, audacious faith, and cultural relevance. It's located in Adams County, which is one of the top five most unchurched counties in the nation (94% Unchurched). Ruben creatively connects with the soul of the unchurched and communicates biblical truth in a way that makes sense in their postmodern thinking. ThornCreek is a church plant that started in 2003 with three strangers, without a parent church or core team. Within the first six years, it began to average over 500 in worship attendance and is still growing today. Pastor Ruben is a first-generation Christian who was led to Christ by an atheist, which has given him a great love for those far from God. He was discipled by an African American janitor when he spent every lunch hour in the janitor's closet learning about Jesus. He graduated from Nazarene Bible College with a Biblical Studies Degree and was previously on staff at Colorado Springs First Church. He has been married for 32 years to his wife, Grace, and they have two children: Josiah and Hannah. Josiah and his wife Kaylee graduated from Trevecca Nazarene University in 2022, and Hannah will be attending Olivet Nazarene University in September 2023. They also have a dog named Caddy, who desperately needs Jesus.

Dr. Michael Jackson

Dr. Michael Jackson is the Associate Professor of Preaching and Hebrew Bible at Trevecca Nazarene University. He has served in this capacity since 2010 and served as an adjunct professor for the master’s program in Preaching at Trevecca from 2006-2010. Prior to this, he pastored churches in Florida, North Carolina, Georgia, and Kansas City for 30 years. MJ earned a Bachelor of Science degree in mathematics from Jacksonville University, a Master of Divinity degree from Nazarene Theological Seminary, and a Doctor of Ministry degree from McCormick Theological Seminary. He and his wife, Cheryl, have been married for 44 years and reside in the greater Nashville, TN area. The Jacksons are the proud parents of two sons and six grandchildren.

Worship Leader - Katie Rose Weissend

Workshop Leaders

Vicki Copp

Marvin Daniels

Letiah Fraser

Levi Jones

Michaele LaVigne

Chelsie Reed

Tim Suttle

Charles Thurman

Lodging Options Within 5 Miles: (Click on links for more details)

King Conference Center at NTS - On Campus

Courtyard by Marriott Kansas City Country Club Plaza - 3.5 Miles Away

InterContinental Kansas City at the Plaza - 3.7 Miles Away

Residence Inn by Marriott Kansas City Country Club Plaza - 3.8 Miles Away

Hilton Kansas City Country Club Plaza - 3.8 Miles Away

Seville Plaza Hotel - 3.8 Miles Away

Aloft Kansas City Country Club Plaza - 3.9 Miles Away

Embassy Suites by Hilton Kansas City - Plaza - 4.0 Miles Away

Hampton Inn & Suites Kansas City - Country Club Plaza - 4.2 Miles Away

AC Hotel by Marriott Kansas City Plaza - 4.4 Miles Away

Days Inn & Suites by Wyndham Kansas City South - 4.8 Miles Away

Hotel Wesport Kansas City - 4.8 Miles Away


  • 1 hour

    Registration, Exhibit Booths, & Coffee


  • 1 hour 30 minutes

    Preaching Session #1: Dawn Ottoni-Wilhelm

13 more items available

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