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Notes from the Quad

In the midst of the nation’s financial crisis, Yale Divinity School Dean Harold Attridge issued an end-of-the year message to the YDS community that concludes, “Our own situation at the University in general and at the Divinity School in particular will require our careful attention, patience, and imagination, but together we can weather this storm and even enhance our ability to prepare men and women to serve church and society.”  The dean held up recruitment and retention of excellent faculty and financial aid to students as top priorities during this time of economic uncertainty. >Go to story



John Van Engen, the Andrew V. Tackes Professor of History at the University of Notre Dame, will deliver Yale Divinity School’s annual Bainton Lecture on Tuesday, Jan. 27 at Sterling Divinity Quadrangle, on the topic Free Spirits, Harassed Beguines, and Arrogant Clerics: A New Look at Religious Communities in the Early Fourteenth-Century Low Countries. The lecture, free and open to the public, will be held at 5:15 p.m. in Niebuhr Hall, followed by a reception in the Sarah Smith Gallery.  >Go to story



Summer Term 2009 will include a full range of courses in Bible, pastoral care, church history, theology, and worship and the arts – along with some practical courses on topics such as writing about faith, and economics for church leaders.  Joining faculty from YDS, BDS and ISM in teaching this summer will be writer Nora Gallagher, author of the best-selling memoir Things Seen and Unseen: A Year Lived in Faith.  Three one-week sessions are scheduled between June 8 and 26.  Full details will be available on the YDS web site in January.


Tony BlairFormer British Prime Minister Tony Blair was the guest of honor at an Oct. 23 luncheon of the Yale Divinity School Board of Advisors, hosted by Yale President Richard C. Levin at his official residence on Hillhouse Avenue in New Haven. Blair, who co-taught the course Faith and Globalization this semester at Yale with YDS Professor Miroslav Volf, called it “an honor and a privilege” to be teaching the course and quipped, “I am learning a lot more from those that I am teaching than they are learning from me.” >Go to story



“We live in an increasingly polarized world in which religion matters as beliefs and practices and is a key element in identity formation and meaning-making and sometimes nation-building for people.  We also must engage a larger academic community that can often be hostile, condescending, and magnificently ignorant of the religious.”  Those were the words of Emilie M. Townes, the Andrew W. Mellon Professor of African American Religion and Theology as she delivered the presidential address at the American Academy of Religion annual meeting at the end of her one-year term. >Go to story



SoccerHeaven triumphed over earth for the second year in a row on Nov. 16 when Yale Divinity School’s stellar soccer team, The Paracleats, cut down Shoots and Leaves, representing the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, in the finals of the Yale Graduate & Professional Schools intramural soccer tournament.  The score was 2-0.

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BrittonJoseph H. Britton, dean of Berkeley Divinity School at Yale, has been appointed as the inaugural J.L. Caldwell McFaddin and Rosine B. McFaddin Associate Professor (Adjunct) of Pastoral Theology. The McFaddin chair was established in 1978 by J.L. Caldwell McFaddin and Rosine B. McFaddin to support a professorship in pastoral theology, particularly as it relates to ministries in underdeveloped areas. Britton's new appointment is effective through June 30, 2013. >Go to story



Poet Jacqueline Osherow was immersed in the Hebrew language from a young age. She vividly recalls learning that single words could have multivalent meanings and tells of being fascinated by certain phrases even before she could read. For Osherow, this fascination has to do with the “idea that it’s a holy language and we don’t really know what it means.” Osherow, distinguished professor of English and creative writing at the University of Utah and author of five books of poems, gave a reading of her poetry on Nov. 3 as part of the Yale Institute of Sacred Music’s Literature and Spirituality Series 2008-09. >Go to story



The Institute of Sacred Music will host a symposium on music and preaching March 8-10 exploring three broad repertoires of liturgical music: jazz, sacred music of the Black church, and the Western classical tradition. Among the questions to be explored: How can we lead congregations into an attentive reception of the music of the Church? How can the work of the preacher and musician enhance each other for the sake of conveying the Gospel? 

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Tarik O'Regan's Threshold of Night with Conspirare, conducted by School of Music graduate Craig Hella-Johnson, was nominated for Grammy awards in the categories of Best Classical Album and Best Choral Album. Among the works on the album is The Ecstasies Above, the first piece commissioned by the Yale Institute of Sacred Music from the Robert Baker Commissioning Fund for Sacred Music.  O’Regan received the commission after spending a year at the ISM and, in particular, working with Simon Carrington and the Schola Cantorum. >Go to story



A sound and slide show featuring “Laudate Dominum” at sung morning prayer in Marquand Chapel, photography by Jennifer L. Miller ’09 M.Div., and a message from Jessica L. Anschutz ’07 M.Div., chair of the Yale Divinity School Annual Fund.
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YDS’s Gifts of a Lifetime initiative can help provide financial certainty in these times of financial uncertainty. With a life-income gift benefiting YDS, such as a charitable gift annuity, you can receive guaranteed quarterly payments from Yale during your lifetime. To learn more about this, other Planned Giving options, and about remembering YDS in your will, please visit http://yale.planyourlegacy.org or call 203-432-5358/800-445-6086.


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