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Fall 2022 Convocation Remarks from Dean emilie m. townes

Aug. 28, 2022—Dean Emilie M. Townes’ Fall Convocation remarks, as delivered on August 26, 2022 each opening convocation, we have begun by remembering those who have died since we were last together in May and to celebrate the new births during this time as well today, we remember those killed in mass shootings in highland park, il...

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Black girl joy, brilliance and magic are front and center at the inaugural Black Girls Becoming summer program

Aug. 1, 2022—In the spirit of former First Lady Michelle Obama’s memoir, Becoming, the program engages 7th and 8th grade Black girls in two weeks of classes that support their socio-emotional development while developing somatic and academic literacies.

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Do the hard and necessary work

Jul. 29, 2022—A reflection from our dean, Emilie M. Townes, for July 2022: With the early release of the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down the landmark Roe v. Wade decision written by Justice Alito in May, we knew what the opinion would be. The finality of the end to the constitutional right to abortion, upheld for...

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The choice for historically Black congregations in Edgehill and 12 South: stay or go

Jul. 20, 2022—Originally published at 9:00 p.m. CT July 19, 2022 in the Tennessean. by Liam Adams and Sydney Satterwhite Key Points Demographic changes in Edgehill and 12 South caused by development have affected membership for historically Black congregations Five historically Black congregations have left the neighborhoods, and one is currently moving Some churches that have stayed wrestle with how...

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VDS student’s field education, guided by VDS alumna, provided much-needed pastoral care at local domestic violence shelter

Jun. 16, 2022—Camille Kammer (MDiv ’22) was one of the few VDS students whose field education at the YWCA Nashville & Middle Tennessee was completed in-person during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. Her work providing pastoral care to women fleeing domestic violence served the largest domestic violence shelter in the region and was guided by Erika Callaway Kleiner (MDiv ’02).

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2022 Charge to the Graduates: Imagine Again

May. 20, 2022—well, for those of you who began your time here in the fall of 2019, you have been through it—not just in the classroom—but in the events that surrounded our lives that academic year began with a dispute between the subcontractors that built the new wing of our building all that light and air and...

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The nature and necessity of bone-deep love

May. 3, 2022—Bone-deep love calls us to live our lives out of the possibilities found in wholeness, self-reflection, justice, peace, a new heaven and a new earth, hope and not our shortcomings—that rest on greed, self-centeredness, avarice, coveting, despair. Amazing love moves us to grow in compassion, understanding, and acceptance of each other. A far better place to be morning by morning and day by day.

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No matter what the world hands us we give back love

Apr. 4, 2022—Somehow, no matter what the world hands us we give back love, we stand for goodness, we live our faith, we live with integrity. we live God’s grace large, we stand with the least of these, we build bridges of salvation, liberation, justice, joy, and deep spirit that can carry the depth and breadth of humanity over them.

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Scholars of economic justice from varied disciplines expand on Wendland-Cook Program’s mission in Academic Fellows Forum

Mar. 29, 2022—For the first time in its history, the Wendland-Cook Program in Religion and Justice has accepted three scholars into its year-long fellowship program, which focuses on matters relating to the intersections of religion, economic justice, class and labor, and environmental justice. The previous cohort in 2020 had a single fellow. During his fellowship, Jeremy Posadas,...

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Lament is not about helplessness or hopelessness

Mar. 11, 2022—Lament is not about helplessness or hopelessness. When done in community, we name that which is causing us to be tempted by despair with as much precision as possible and then begin to take steps to address—if not eradicate—that which keeps us from a more just world.

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