Divinity school

School Notes: Yale Divinity School
March/April 2023

Gregory E. Sterling | http://divinity.yale.edu

Moral movement leader to direct new center at YDS

YDS has announced the new Center for Public Theology and Public Policy, which is pursuing teaching, practice, research, and collaboration at the intersection of theology and advocacy. Bishop William J. Barber II, a moral movement leader who comes to Yale after 30 years of pastoral ministry and has served in numerous public leadership roles, is serving as its founding director. In announcing the appointment, YDS dean Greg Sterling noted that Barber’s work carries forward the tradition of historical figures including Frederick Douglass, Sojourner Truth, Dorothy Day, Martin Luther King Jr., and Abraham Joshua Heschel. “Establishment of the Center at YDS is an opportunity to deepen our relationship to a historical movement that revives nearly two centuries of social justice tradition to meet the complex social realities of our time.” The center’s scholarly and teaching work will engage divinity, law, and undergraduate students in critical conversations about religion, faith, moral values, social movements, and social transformation.  

A ‘Grand Errand’: book charts Divinity School’s mission over two centuries

During the current academic year, the Divinity School is observing its bicentennial by reflecting on its past and imagining its future. A major part of the former is the publication of a new history book, “This Grand Errand”: A Bicentennial History of Yale Divinity School. Authored by Ray Waddle, longtime editor of the Divinity School’s journal, Reflections, the book provides a comprehensive history of the school and its impact on theology, religious life, and culture over the past 200 years, while documenting the school’s transformation from a regional seminary into a top-flight global institution for the training of religious, scholarly, and public leaders. The book is available through Yale Press, and an interview with Waddle can be found at YaleNews and on the YDS website.

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