The Rev. Dr. Edward E. Thompson ("Ted" or "Fr. Ted")
The Rev. Dr. Edward E. Thompson ("Ted" or "Fr. Ted") was called to serve as rector of Trinity in September, 2018. Born in Bethesda, Maryland, he grew up near Rockville, took his B.A. at Williams College, then lived and worked in Japan. This led to two years of graduate work in Asian Studies at the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, after which his theological questions took him to the Church Divinity School of the Pacific, the Episcopal seminary in Berkeley, CA. With an M.Div., Fr. Ted first served a large parish in Menlo Park, then after ordination to the priesthood, as vicar of the Japanese/Japanese-American mission of Christ Church-Sei Ko Kai, in San Francisco, and subsequently as rector of the suburban parish of Christ Church, Alameda. In 2009, with an Episcopal Church Foundation fellowship and his bishop's blessing, Fr. Ted left parish ministries to pursue advanced studies and training at George Mason University's School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution in Arlington, VA, with the goal of growing the capacity of the Church for the global mission of reconciliation. While completing his Ph.D., Fr. Ted worked as consultant and short-term staff with congregations in northern Virginia and then in the San Francisco Bay Area.
He has returned to parish ministry intent on bringing together Church, academia, and the larger community in the work of reconciliation. Fr. Ted is Acting Dean of the Delaware Deanery, one of ten area groupings within the larger Episcopal diocese. He sits on the board of Partners in Ministry, the coalition of churches which has supported Protestant Christian ministry at Swarthmore College. On behalf of the Presiding Bishop's Office of Ecumenical and Inter-Religious Affairs, Fr. Ted represents the Episcopal Church in the Hindu-Christian Dialogue hosted by the National Council of Churches. He also serves on the NCC's Theological Task Force, for which he is helping to draft a theological and programmatic response to racism in the context of inter-religious relations. In addition to Anglican liturgy and theology, he values pastoral and small group settings as opportunities for spiritual growth in wisdom and faithfulness, as well as moments to "rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep." (Romans 12:15)
Fr. Ted arrived in Swarthmore with his wife, Mary, and their teenage son, William. Following an accomplished career in government service, Mary now teaches yoga and has become a garden enthusiast. William's next love after their dog "Bella" is baseball, which has become a family past-time. You may catch sight of father and son going through William's hitting, fielding and pitching routines at Henderson Field or Mary walking the dog. The family also enjoys sailing, fishing, watching a variety of movies, "talking science" at home (at least Fr. Ted does!), and vacations on the downeast coast of Maine.