“People were meeting what they identified as spiritual needs, but doing them in organizations that had no apparent spiritual connection,” said HDS Associate Dean for Ministry Studies Dudley Rose. “Like SoulCycle. People would cite SoulCycle.”
"I think it's because they want that professional degree, and they want the respect that should come with that," said Patricia Simpson, counselor to Roman Catholic Students and Instructor in Ministry Studies at HDS. "I think they want to be able to state that they've prepared academically to the same level as ... the men being ordained."
"We have been on pilgrimage together in this extraordinary wilderness of pandemic and uprising, and like all pilgrimages, we have been led to places we may not have known we needed to go," says Kerry Maloney, HDS chaplain and director of religious and spiritual life.
"COVID-19 brutalizes bodies, but it also disempowers families who are unable to see their loved ones, sit at their bedsides and hold their hands," writes Bridget Power, MDiv '19, a chaplain resident at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston.
When HDS Ministry Innovation Fellow Casper ter Kuile asked on social media who, on lockdown, would want to participate in a weekly community sing, he found more than 100 eager strangers from the U.S., Europe, and Africa.
"My first job in ministry was in a university church, and I love the reach of these places, the connections they can create between their universities and the world around them, and the unique forms of learning they offer," writes HDS Professor Stephanie Paulsell, Interim Pusey Minister in the Memorial Church.
“It’s rare for a divinity school to have such a diverse group of people,” says Israel Buffardi, MDiv '19, of HDS. “[It allows for] building community with all different types of people and finding connections with each other and the values in their lives.”