Magazine article The Christian Century

James B. Nelson

Magazine article The Christian Century

James B. Nelson

Article excerpt

James B. Nelson, an author and scholar of Christian ethics in the United Church of Christ, died October 15 in Tucson, Arizona, at age 85.

Nelson took part in the civil rights and antiwar movements in the 1960s and championed LGBT rights beginning in the 1970s.

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"His groundbreaking work on human sexuality and ethics helped set the stage for a United Church ready to become open and affirming," said John C. Dorhauer, UCC general minister and president. "He helped us understand that sexual expression and intimacy were gifts of the sacred. He was ahead of his time, and endured much abuse and vitriol." Nelson was born in Windom, Minnesota, and earned degrees from Macalester College in St. Paul and Yale University. He was ordained in the UCC and served as a pastor in Connecticut and South Dakota before joining the faculty of United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities in Minnesota in 1963. He taught there for 35 years.

Nelson wrote 12 books and had one in progress at the time of his death. …

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