From left, Stan Basler receives congratulations from Susan Southall of Enid and Dean Elaine Robinson of Saint Paul at OCU.
Stan Basler received the 2011 Distinguished Graduate Award from Saint Paul School of Theology on May 13 in Kansas City, Mo.
He directs Criminal Justice & Mercy Ministries (CJAMM) for the Oklahoma Conference. He earned his doctorate at the UM seminary in 2000.
"Stan Basler is a constant reminder of the difference between retributive justice and restorative justice," said Susan Southall, associate pastor of Enid-First and president of the seminary’s Graduate Association. "He merges his background in the legal profession with his Christian faith and seminary education.
"In his role as director, he has influenced many lives, helping men, women, and children recognize God’s love while also challenging them to find a healthy path for their lives. He truly cares about those who have been incarcerated as well as for their families."
Rev. Dr. Basler also was recognized for teaching classes at Saint Paul.
"When the time came for me to pursue a Doctor of Ministry degree, I applied to only one school," said Basler. "I knew Saint Paul would give me the flexibility to focus on restorative justice, a very narrow area of ministry, and they did that.
"Since that time, Saint Paul has allowed me to develop and teach three courses in the master’s curriculum. There is now a specialization in Prison Ministry and Restorative Justice. Saint Paul is a very important part of my life."