Biographical Sketch

Paul Stroble is a teacher and writer with interrelated interests in world religions, social ethics, Bible studies, spirituality, the sense of place, philosophy, and American history. He has taught courses in religion, philosophy, and history for over twenty-five years and has served in different church and community capacities for many years. Writing as a freelance author for hire and as an independent scholar, he has authored about 250 publications, including eighteen books and contributions to ten other books. Among his writing work, he has enjoyed teaching laity about topics in interfaith understanding, science and religion, Bible interpretation, spiritual growth, and global citizenship. He can be contacted at pstroble@yahoo.com.

A native of Vandalia (Fayette County), Illinois, he holds a B.A. in history from Greenville College, an M.Div.in religious studies from Yale Divinity School, and a Ph.D. in religious studies (philosophical theology) from the University of Virginia. His doctoral advisor was Robert P. Scharlemann. In his Yale studies, he took courses from Hans Frei, Robert C. Johnson, Brevard S. Childs, R. Lansing Hicks, Luke T. Johnson, Colin W. Williams, Sydney E. Ahlstrom, George Lindbeck, and B. Davie Napier.

Dr. Stroble currently teaches at Webster University and Eden Theological Seminary. Among his Eden courses is "Evangelism" and "Christians and the Common Good." Among his current work at Webster University, he teaches courses for the Global Citizenship Program, teaches both classroom and onlne courses, and designed the "religion and democracy" component of a Keystone Seminar on The Democratic Process. He also serves on the Global Citizenship Program's Ethical Reasoning taskforce. Formerly he taught in the History Department and the Honors College at The University of Akron. Prior to that he taught at Indiana University Southeast, Louisville Seminary, Spalding University, and Northern Arizona University. His teaching has included courses in world religions, Christian social ethics, intro to philosophy, philosophy of religion, intro to American history, American highways, the life of Lincoln, and American religious history. At the University of Akron, he won two teaching awards.

Dr. Stroble's current writing interests include Christian spirituality, Bible-based curriculum and meditations, religion and social/global issues, faith and the sense of place, personal essays and poetry.

His first book, High on the Okaw’s Western Bank: Vandalia, Illinois, 1819-1839 (1992), is the first academic history of Illinois' second capital, where Lincoln and Douglas began their political careers. It has been a resource for historians of the Illinois frontier, recent biographers of Lincoln, and local history efforts. His second book, The Social Ontology of Karl Barth (1994), is a treatment of the themes of intersubjectivity and otherness through the periods of Barth's theological development. It has been cited in several Barth studies.

Dr. Stroble's subsequent books have been primarily church curriculum. What Do Other Faiths Believe? (2003) appeared amid the post-9/11 interest in world religions and has sold over 20,000 copies. His book in the same "FaithQuestions" series, What About Religion and Science? (2007) helps readers appreciate scientific theory and affirm the complementariness of reason and faith. His other books include Paul and the Galatians (2000), You Gave Me a Wide Place: Holy Places of Our Lives (2006), What's in the Bible about Life Together? (2009), and three seasonal Bible studies. He has written for five different study-book series for Abingdon Press. He also was the principal writer for the six-lesson curriculum, "Faithful Citizen: Living Responsibly in a Global Society," for Faithful Citizen (formerly the Center for the Congregation in Public Life), faithfulcitizenstudy.com

His new books (mid and late 2015) are Walking with Jesus through the Old Testament: Devotions for Lent, published by Westminster John Knox Press, and Dreaming at the Electric Hobo, a poetry chapbook published by Finishing Line Press.

In 1996 through 2011 he served on the team of the online curriculum FaithLink, writing or researching over 180 issues on a wide range of topics in science, politics, health and health care, climate, economy and poverty, wars and civil conflicts, prison reform, marriage and children, education, church ministries, spiritual growth and formation, religious holidays, and others. His FaithLink work was used for Abingdon Press' Becoming the People of God book series and the study Connecting Faith & Life in Hard Times (2009), as well as the special issue, The Shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School (2012).

Among his book contributions are articles for The Encyclopedia of Louisville and Living by the Word (Chalice Press). He has published articles, essays, reviews, meditations, and poems in periodicals like Springhouse, The Christian Century, Journal of the American Academy of Religion, Journal of Religion, Journal of the Early American Republic, Sophia: A Journal of Philosophy, Illinois Historical Journal, Illinois Magazine, Illinois History Teacher, Upper Room Disciplines, Adult Bible Studies, Daily Bible Studies, Religion and Public Education, Alive Now, Reflections (Yale Divinity School), Interpreter, The Circuit Rider, Quarterly Review, Christian Ministry, Critical Review of Books in Religion, The Mother Road Journal, Louisville Courier-Journal, Tipton Poetry Journal, The Pikeville Review, Tantra Press, and others.

Dr. Stroble received a Teaching Excellence Award and a Distinguished Service Award from the Honors College of the University of Akron; a Religious Leaders grant from the Louisville Institute; a Youth Grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities; and writing awards from the National Council on Religion and Public Education (shared with Dr. Beth Stroble), the Illinois State Historical Society, and (as a FaithLink team member) The United Methodist Association of Communicators.

He is an ordained minister in the United Methodist Church and served parishes as pastor, associate pastor, and minister of programs. Both as a staff member and parish volunteer, he has planned and led church small groups, coordinated 100+ volunteers in the context of ministry programs, served on church boards, chaired a church administrative council, and worked with shut-in and hospital visitation programs in several churches. He has served on his congregation's board of trustees and committee on shut-in ministry. His Louisville Institute grant research addressed topics in pastoral leadership and volunteer ministries.

Dr. Stroble has also served as: faculty advisor for a local chapter of the National Society of Collegiate Scholars; class fund agent and class secretary for Yale Divinity School; a judge in a competition of student theological papers; a member of the boards of CROP Walk, YouthWorks, and other ministries, and a member of groups on spiritual formation and racial equality. He has also participated in and spoken to interfaith dialogue groups and helped plan, develop, and implement ecumenical community worship services. He enjoys contributing to his hometown's historical legacy in numerous ways, collects books related to frontier-era Illinois, and when possible he includes a reference to Fayette County, IL into many of his writings.

He and his wife, Dr. Elizabeth Stroble, who is the president of Webster University, are involved in numerous community activities. His primary blog is "Journeys Home," at paulstroble.blogspot.com.