e-Spire -- Vanderbilt Divinity School
20 March 2011

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giVe NOW
  Rev. Dr. Forrest E. Harris Sr.

Honoring legacies and changing lives:
Celebrating 25 years of Vanderbilt's Kelly Miller Smith Institute

During the first community breakfast of the spring semester, the Rev. Dr. Forrest E. Harris Sr., assistant professor of the practice of ministry and director of the Kelly Miller Smith Institute on Black Church Studies (KMSI), marked the beginning of a celebration to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the institute. His lecture recapped the evolution of KMSI, commented on its prophetic work and examined the institute's future in context of the challenges of the black church. Read more >>

    Niger Woodruff

Open my eyes

In an examination of Jesus at the Festival and healing the blind man found in John 7-9, third-year master of divinity student Niger Woodruff preached at Vanderbilt Divinity School's Community Worship in September. In his sermon, Niger called for the VDS community to open our eyes and see the world in a new light. Read more >>


Vanderbilt Divinity School night at women's basketball

Vanderbilt Divinity School students, faculty, staff and alumni/ae showed their Commodore spirit at the Feb. 3 women's basketball game against LSU. Mr. Commodore himself joined the group as we cheered the Lady 'Dores to victory.

Our community in pictures

Jennifer Knapp and Lianna Carrera present an evening of comedy and music at Benton Chapel

A great crowd at Benton Chapel was graced with the comedic talent of Lianna Carrera and the musical gifts of Jennifer Knapp on Jan. 22. The night of comedy and song closed with a question-and-answer session about sexuality, spirituality and the entertainment industry. GABLE leaders and the performers: (left) Brock Warren, M.Div.3; Chris McCain, M.Div.2; Lianna Carrera; Laura Rossbert, M.Div.2; and Jennifer Knapp.

GABLE leaders and the performers

Stay connected
Have you recently moved, changed jobs or have wonderful news to share? We are in the process of updating our records and would love to stay connected with you in the best ways possible. Please take a moment and update your contact information by using our new Update Contact Information link.

  In the news

Placing limits on God's love

The Tennessean: OpinionChris McCain, a second-year master of divinity student and Carpenter Scholar, wrote an opinion piece responding to another opinion concerning Belmont University's inclusion of sexual orientation in the university's nondiscrimination policy. Read more >>

A place of hope for homeless female veterans

Your News Now—The Rev. Kelly Ayer, MDiv'04, is director of Zion House, one of only two transitional living homes for homeless female veterans in the country. Read more >>

Finding Dr. King's "strength to love"

The Tennessean: Opinion—To commemorate Martin Luther King Jr. Day, the Rev. Dr. Forrest E. Harris Sr., assistant professor of the practice of ministry and director of the Kelly Miller Smith Institute on Black Church Studies, wrote an op-ed piece characterizing America's need to remember and embrace the teachings of King in today's political discourse. Read more >>

VDS alumnus reflects on the Volunteer state's work in Haiti

The TennesseanJenny Eaton Dyer, MTS'01 and PhD'07, executive director of Hope Through Healing Hands, reflected on the group's Tennessee Global Health Coalition's relief work in Haiti a year after the 7.0-magnitude earthquake. Read more >>

If you would like to share your news or photos with the e-Spire community, please email us at AlumniDivinity@vanderbilt.edu.

19 20 Upcoming events

Community Breakfast

7:30–8:30 a.m.
Thursday, March 17
Divinity School Reading Room

Ted Smith
Assistant Professor of Ethics and Society
Director, Program in Theology and Practice

Sex and the Limits of Ethics

Recent church debates about sex and sexuality have tended to play out in the key of ethics. But a merely ethical approach to sex ends up, ironically, less than fully ethical. Smith will argue that churches need to consider other kinds of values and talk about sex in language that cannot be reduced to ethics alone.

Antoinette Brown Lecture

7 p.m.
Thursday, March 24
Benton Chapel

Catherine Keller
Professor of Constructive Theology, Drew University

The Antoinette Brown Lecture Series, established by Sylvia Sanders Kelley, BA'54, brings to Vanderbilt distinguished female theologians and church leaders who address concerns relating to ministry and the study of religion.


Save the date: Homecoming 2011
October 20–22

We hope you can make plans now to attend Homecoming 2011. Please look for information in the coming months about the great opportunities planned to reconnect you with VDS/GDR and your classmates. If you are interested in volunteering, please email Meagan Burton-Krieger or call (615) 322-6749. We look forward to seeing you in October!


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