Graduate Theological Union


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Pink Smoke Over the Vatican

Pink Smoke Over the Vatican is a documentary by Jules Hart about women’s ordination within the Roman Catholic Church. A discussion with Professor Victoria Rue, an ordained Roman Catholic Priest, followed the screening on September 23, 2011.

Below are audio recordings of the questions answered before and after the screening.

Eric Alexander, New VP for Advancement

The GTU is pleased to announce the appointment of Eric Alexander as its new Vice President for Advancement.
GTU President James Donahue said of his appointment, “I am delighted to welcome Eric to the GTU. His range of experience in advancement, his understanding of our mission and context, and his personal qualities and energy will be an enormous addition to the leadership of the GTU.”


In Memoriam: Jane Newhall, Trustee Emerita

Jane Newhall (born October 4, 1913), a generous benefactor to the Graduate Theological Union and GTU member school San Francisco Theological Seminary (SFTS), died July 27 in Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts, at the age of 97. Newhall suffered a stroke in early July and then contracted pneumonia. A memorial will likely take place at Calvary Presbyterian Church at a date to be determined.


Ted Peters (PLTS) addresses Christian Scholars' Conference

Ted Peters, Professor of Systematic Theology at Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary, gave the plenary address "Stem Cells: Who's Fighting with Whom about What?" at the 31st Annual Christian Scholars' Conference hosted at Pepperdine University. Other speakers during the three conference (June 16-18) included Dr. Francis S. Collins, National Institutes of Heath Director; Rev. Dr. John Polkinghorne, founding president of the International Society for Science and Religion; and Emmy award-winning journalist and sustainability advocate Simran Sethi.

Belser brings interdisciplary scholarship to Harvard

Julia Watts BelserRabbi Julia Watts Belser (Ph.D. ‘08) will be Visiting Assistant Professor of Women's Studies and Jewish Ethics at Harvard Divinity School’s Women’s Studies in Religion Program for 2011-12.

Belser, who is Assistant Professor of Judaism at Missouri State University, strives to teach classic Jewish texts in ways that speak to contemporary longings.

Benny Liew (PSR) at Drew's Tipple-Vosburgh Lectures

Tat-Siong Benny Liew will be a keynote speaker at Drew University's Tipple-Vosburgh Lectures, October 18-20, 2011. Liew, Professor of New Testament at Pacific School of Religion, will deliver "What Has Been Done? What Can We Learn? Racial/Ethnic Minority Readings of the Bible." Also present at the lectures will be former PSR faculty members Kah-Jin Jeffrey Kuan, current Dean of Drew Theological School, and Mayra Rivera, currently at Harvard Divinity School.

GTU Doctoral Student Carmen Lansdowne Selected to Receive Second Prestigious FTE Fellowship

Carmen LansdowneCarmen Lansdowne, a GTU doctoral student in Interdisciplinary Studies, has been selected to receive a 2011 Fund for Theological Education (FTE) North American Doctoral Fellowship, a competitive national award with a stipend of between $5,000 and $10,000. Lansdowne, whose research interests include urging the prophetic witness of churches to address the continuing injustices facing native peoples in the Americas, was also a North American Doctoral Fellow in 2010.

GTU Alumna at the helm of new Keshet Bay Area office

Sasha Goldberg (M.A. Judaism '09) heads the new Bay Area office of Keshet, a Jewish LGBT group. Prior to her new position, she was associate director at Nehirim which runs retreats for LGBT Jews. Goldberg is also a consultant on LGBT issues.

In Memoriam: Nicholas V. Riasanovsky

May 14, 2011 - Nicholas Valentine Riasanovsky, an emeritus professor of European history at the University of California, Berkeley, and a leading authority on the history of Russia, died May 14 in an Oakland, Calif., nursing home following a long illness. He was 87.

Riasanovsky had close ties to the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley and was a founder of its Patriarch Athenagoras Orthodox Institute, serving as an institute board member from 1986 to 2005.

In Memoriam: Stephen De Staebler

Stephen Lucas De Staebler, noted Bay Area sculptor, passed away at his home in Berkeley, California, from complications from cancer on May 13, 2011, with family by his side. He was 78. His sculpture Winged Figure is a focal point in the Flora Lamson Hewlett Library. A prominent figure in Bay Area art world, De Staebler was also an emeritus member of the Board of Trustees for the Center for Arts, Religion and Education (CARE), a GTU affiliate.


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