Baylor University’s George W. Truett Theological Seminary Dean Todd D. Still has announced the appointment of Dr. Rebecca Poe Hays as Assistant Professor of Christian Scriptures (Old Testament/Hebrew Bible). She will join the Truett Seminary faculty on August 1, 2019 following the retirement of Dr. Lai Ling Ngan effective May 31, 2019.
“Baylor University seeks to hire top-flight researchers, transformative teachers, and committed Christians. Those criteria describe Dr. Poe Hays perfectly. In addition, Truett Seminary seeks to hire devoted ministers who can faithfully shape future ministers, and we have a good bit of evidence that indicates God has already been and will continue to utilize Dr. Poe Hays in that capacity as well,” said Dr. Andrew Arterbury, Associate Professor of Christian Scriptures and chair of the search committee who recommended Dr. Poe Hays. “In short, I fully expect Dr. Poe Hays to be a generational leader in both Old Testament studies and theological education. I am overjoyed that she will be joining Truett’s faculty in the fall.”
Dr. Poe Hays earned a BA from Union University, a MDiv from Beeson Divinity School at Samford University, and a PhD in Hebrew Bible/Old Testament from Baylor. Her primary research focus is biblical Hebrew poetry and the ways that story and storytelling function in poetry. Currently, she is exploring how storytelling in the Psalms contributes to trauma recovery and resilience.
In her current role as the Project Coordinator of the Soundings Project—a Lilly Grant-funded initiative overseen by Baylor’s Institute for Faith and Learning (IFL) and Truett’s Center for Ministry Effectiveness—Dr. Poe Hays works with Dr. Darin Davis, Vice President for University Mission and Director of the IFL, to build relationships between Baylor University and Texas churches so that they might together reflect deeply and theologically about the nature of vocation. Additionally, Dr. Poe Hays teaches as an adjunct at Truett and has taught for Baylor’s Continuing Education program.
“I am thrilled to join a seminary community that brings together rigorous scholarship and deep love for the church,” Dr. Poe Hays said. “I am looking forward to collaborating with colleagues on research and in service that will support the work of the church. The opportunity to help equip students to minister in churches across the state and around the world is humbling and inspiring.”
Dr. Poe Hays has been published in a number of leading Old Testament journals and has served on a youth ministry staff and as a children’s minister in Baptist churches in Tennessee. She also comes from a family of ministers—including parents who have both served as pastors—and her husband, Rev. Joshua Hays, serves as the Associate Pastor of Discipleship at First Baptist Church, Waco.
“I gladly and gratefully join faculty colleagues in welcoming Dr. Rebecca Poe Hays to the Truett Seminary family,” said Dean Still regarding this most recent appointment to the seminary’s highly-regarded faculty. “As a gifted teacher, able researcher, and committed minister, she will add appreciably to our community of faith and learning and will enable us to fulfill more fully our mission of preparing God-called people for gospel ministry in and alongside Christ’s Church by the power of the Holy Spirit. Both the search committee and the successful candidate are to be warmly and heartily congratulated.”