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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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VDS Dean of Admissions shares family tie with legendary Asian American activist Helen Zia

Mar. 11, 2022—Guest Story by Rev. Laura M. Cheifetz, Assistant Dean of Admissions, Vocation & Stewardship You are invited to hear Helen Zia, legendary author, activist and former journalist, speak here at Vanderbilt University on March 24. We will be welcoming her to the Commons Center Multipurpose Room (267 Appleton Pl, Nashville, TN 37212; 2nd floor) at...

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Divinity students bring unique experience with grief rituals during an era of extraordinary death

Feb. 7, 2022—Meg Wade, a second-year MDiv student, brings her passion for helping those in mourning process their grief as a “grief doula,” while George Schmidt, a second-year PhD student in theological studies, brings his experience as an military chaplain that was present at hundreds of burial ceremonies to assist next of kin at the Arlington National Cemetery. Both highlight contrasts as well as similarities in the way society ritualizes grief.

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Public theology fellow leaves legacy of community building and support

Dec. 20, 2021—The Rev. Teresa L. Smallwood, who helped launch Vanderbilt’s Public Theology and Racial Justice Collaborative as associate director in 2017, is moving to Pennsylvania’s United Lutheran Seminary in January. Over Smallwood’s four years at Vanderbilt Divinity School, the Collaborative has hosted nearly 30 workshops and more than 20 fellows and scholars to advance racial justice...

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