David Felten (Pastor)
Living the Questions: http://livingthequestionsonline.com/
Harrell F. Beck Online: http://www.harrellbeck.com/
A native of Phoenix, David received a music education degree from Arizona State University before attending Boston University School of Theology where he earned his MDiv in Biblical Studies and History. Before completing Chaplaincy training at Good Samaritan Regional Medical Center, David spent a year studying as a Rotary Graduate Scholar at Perth Theological Hall of Murdoch University in Perth, Western Australia. There he received an Honours degree and a taste for Promite.
David spent eight years as Associate Pastor and Co-pastor at Epworth United Methodist in West Phoenix and was appointed to start a new church in the Northeast Scottsdale area in July of 1998. Starting from scratch, Via de Cristo grew into a dynamic faith community serving a niche group of spiritual seekers and those who would otherwise be “church alumni”.
In an effort to offer educational materials that were not being produced by other publishers, David and fellow United Methodist pastor, Jeff Procter-Murphy, created a new curriculum for Progressive Christians called Living the Questions. Developed at Via de Cristo and Asbury United Methodist, what started out as just one DVD series is now a growing catalog of curriculum, including the new series, “DreamThinkBeDo,” “Saving Jesus Redux,” “Matt & Lucy’s Version Births” (a Children’s Christmas Pageant), and a series questioning capital punishment with Sr. Helen Prejean. LtQ curriculum is now in use in nearly 6,000 churches in North America, Europe, and Australia/New Zealand.
David and co-author, Jeff Procter-Murphy, published their fist book together in 2012: “Living the Questions, the Wisdom of Progressive Christianity.” Published by HarperOne, the book is available for browsing online here; http://www.harpercollins.com/browseinside/index.aspx?isbn13=9780062109361
Although David is a full-time pastor, he’s never strayed far from his roots as a musician. You’ll often find him playing in a variety of worship and concert settings, including on a number of CDs by Roman Catholic musicians like Norbert Zwickl, Paul Hillebrand, and Tim & Julie Smith. He’s also played with Peter Torsiello, Ken Medema, James Ward, Jaime Cortez, and in his brother’s Washington-based big band, The Eric Felten Orchestra. Most recently, David played on some of the tracks of pianist and composer Barb Catlin’s “Living the Questions” CD, “The Summons”.
In the wider community, David is one of the founding directors of the Arizona Foundation for Contemporary Theology (www.azfct.org) and one of the founders of No Longer Silent: Clergy for Justice (www.nolongersilent.org), a group advocating for the full inclusion of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender people both in the church and in the community. David is currently serving on the Dean’s Advisory Board of Boston University’s School of Theology (http://www.bu.edu/sth/) and on the board of the Phoenix Chapter of Americans United for the Separation of Church and State (www.au.org).
One of the most influential sermons in David’s life has been Harry Emerson Fosdick’s “Shall the Fundamentalists Win?” – preached in 1922. Click HERE to read the sermon, reproduced here with permission.