LSTC Graduate Spotlight 2023

Headshot of Amornrat Kuhakatipob

Amornrat (Pla) Kuhakatipob

She / Her / Hers
Master of Theology in Biblical Study

What is your favorite memory of your time at LSTC?

My favorite memory at LSTC are the times when I was at the LRWC, especially when students were gathered there, having conversations, studying together, sharing food and snacks, and playing games. I love this vibe because it makes me feel that school is not just a place for academic study, but also a place for building community and relationships, bonding, and learning from one another.

What was the most meaningful class you took?

All the classes I took are meaningful to me in different aspects. If I have to pick one, I would say that I was impressed by participating in the Historiography class. As a Biblical student, this class contributed to my learning how people in different periods and different groups understood and interpreted the same Bible passage in different ways. And it is fascinating to see that the same Bible passage had various meanings when it was placed in various literary and historical contexts. Moreover, it was very wonderful to have classmates from different countries, denominations, and fields of studies. So, this class also opened my world to learning new and important things from one another.

How did you feel supported during your seminary journey? Were you the recipient of any major scholarships? What communities or people uplifted you during your studies?

I am an ELCA Global Mission scholarship holder. LSTC and ELCA well supported me, especially regarding financial assistance. I would like to thank you LSTC and the ELCA for providing me with the mental and physical support by following up on my issues, giving me a space to share my feelings and thoughts, and understanding my concerns. Not only these two organizations, but I would also like to thank the Thai congregation at St. Paul Thai church for supporting my family in many ways while we are here in the U.S.

In the academic aspect, I felt supported by faculties in the Bible division and Advanced Studies. They always encouraged me to reach my goal of being a Biblical scholar and provided me with good resources for studying. My classmates were very supportive when I needed help with class assignments or when I needed a counselor. In daily life, my family is always beside me to walk through all circumstances that I have faced.

The LSTC international community has been very generous to my family. I love when we have events for students’ families. This makes my husband and my daughter feel that they are a part of the LSTC community, too.

I have tons of words to share about how I was supported by communities and people here. I can’t mention everything and every person that I have experienced, but I can say that God sent them to be a blessing to my life.

What are your post-graduation plans?

I am graduating with a Master of Theology degree. My next plan is to continue my study in the Ph.D. program. My concentration is the New Testament, and I am planning to focus on the Synoptic Gospel.

How did LSTC shape you as a future leader of the public church?

The most important thing that I have gained from studying at LSTC is to “be myself and respect others”. I am from a so-called third-world country, but LSTC has shaped me to see the value of being who I am.

I have learned that if I did not respect who or what I am, I can’t respect anyone. LSTC is a good community of multi-cultures. This opened my world to learning the variety of people, such as nations, races, genders, denominations, etc. LSTC helped me to learn more to understand the differentiation among people. This has contributed to me to dealing with people from different backgrounds of life and encouraging the congregation to love God and love one another as best as I can.

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