People Notes


“I obviously can't get into J.K. Rowling's head, and so I always hesitate to comment about her intentions. But I don't think that her intention was to smuggle the Gospel into the books. That makes it sound like she was purposefully out to proselytize her readers. I definitely don't think that was the case. I think overall the books read to me, so much of it, deeply questioning what it means to love well and what it means to have faith in situations where despair seems really heavy. And because of that the books read to me like they're written from the perspective of a seeker and someone who's really on a faith journey, less than they read about someone who's out to proselytize about the Gospel.  Danielle Tumminio ’03 B.A., ’06 M.Div., ’08 S.T.M., in an interview conducted by Daniel Klimek ’10 M.A.R. in, Nov. 19, 2010, on the eve of the publication of Tumminio’s new book, God and Harry at Yale: Faith and Fiction in the Classroom.

Click here for interview of Danielle Tumminio on WNPR in Connecticut


“His work has benefited countless numbers of low-income families and individuals. He has mentored and trained many young attorneys. And he has for many years led one of the best legal aid programs in the country, during periods when legal aids were under assault by the federal government and others.” California Assembly member Dave Jones, in the October 2010 issue of the California Bar Journal, describing the work of Gary Smith ’83 M.Div., ’83 J.D., in the story “State Bar’s top honor goes to social justice advocate Gary Smith.”

“We need to hear ourselves think again, and hear others. The curious status quo -- loud yet underachieving, livid yet cozy -- is a sputtering failure for one reason: It doesn't work. Be skeptical of glittering information sources that major in fear, anger and sentimentality. Talk to people who don't share your politics or religion. Take a breath, and reset imagination.”  Ray Waddle, editor of YDS’s Reflections magazine, Nov. 23, 2010, writing in The Huffington Post.

“I’m excited by this new opportunity to support Linda (Lorimer) and Tom Mattia’s initiative in taking Yale communications to the next level. The chance to work with one of the world’s top communications pros in the service of our university is pretty much amazing.” Michael Moran ’87 B.A., ’93 M.Div., Nov. 12, 2010, New Haven (CT) Register, in an article about his decision to leave his Yale post as associate vice president in the Office of New Haven & State Affairs to be director of state communications and special initiatives in the University’s Office of Public Affairs and Communication.

“The truly ridiculous part is that Christian theology teaches that the tortured, abused body of Christ is God incarnate to experience and understand the deepest of human suffering, including the devastation done to bodies by AIDS. Are ants crawling on a depiction of that broken, wounded body really doing worse to Christ than humans did? Really? Ants? Jesus and his followers are afraid of ants on a plaster representation of his body?”  Patrick Evans, associate professor in the practice of sacred

music, Dec. 2, 2010, The Washington Post, in the “On Faith” column “Ant-covered Jesus irony: Christian theology embraces the suffering.”

"She certainly was a staunch advocate of justice.  That really was her hallmark. She was fearless in terms of standing for nonviolence and against racism and unafraid to speak her mind.” June Shimokawa, commenting about her friend Fumiye Miho ’53 B.D., a survivor of the atomic bomb explosion in Hiroshima, who died Oct. 31 at the age of 95.  Honolulu Star Advertiser, Dec. 3, 2010.

“Rituals become, when they are vitally enacted by the community, a way of life. Rituals are the glue bonding together memory, identity, community, and daily living. And often, ‘comfort’ isn’t what the ritual is aiming for. It can just as easily be about ‘afflicting the comfortable’ as it is about ‘comforting the afflicted.’” Travis Scholl ’07 M.Div., Nov. 9, 2010, writing in, in the column “Starbucks Coffee and the meaning of ritual.

Dwight Andrews ’77 M.Div., ’93 Ph.D., has been named an Emory University Public Scholarship Fellow for 2010-11.  The appointment involves public lectures and presentation in the broader Atlanta community.  Andrews’s subject will be race and representation in American popular culture, from 19th century minstrelsy to the present.

R. William Franklin, former dean of Berkeley Divinity School, was elected bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of New York on Nov. 20, pending the required consents from a majority of bishops with jurisdiction and standing committees of the Episcopal Church.   Senior associate priest at St. Mark's Episcopal Church, Philadelphia, Franklin was elected on the seventh ballot out of a field of four nominees. Franklin served for four years as dean of Berkeley Divinity School until his resignation in December 2001.

"The church has a call to help the poor, one that it often forgets." Alvin Helms ’89 M.A.R. North County (CA) Times, Nov. 5, 2010, in the article “New pastor emphasizes serving community,”

"The two most important things in our society are religion on one hand; on the other is science and technology. How we understand those two is one of the biggest challenges for the 21st century." Charles Stevenson ’06 M.Div., ’09 S.T.M.,  Nov. 24, 2010, The Salem (MA) News, in the article “New pastor combines ministry, engineering.”

"Health care in Africa has been delivered by those motivated by their religion . . . The abolition of slavery was achieved by combined secularism and non-secularism. At least accept that there are people who are doing great things because of their faith.”  Tony Blair, lecturer in religion and politics and former prime minister of the United Kingdom, Nov. 27, 2010, The Huffington Post, in the article “Tony Blair, Christopher Hitchens, debate religion.”