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Belmont University | Belief in Something Greater

Spring 09

Spring 2009 Spiritual Development Speakers

January 16: Barack Obama’s Faith. 10 a.m. - Neely Hall.  Stephen Mansfield, a New York Times best-selling author, wrote his latest book, The Faith of Barack Obama, from his perspective as a conservative evangelical.  He discovered in the man who will be inaugurated our 44th president “a brother in Christ” whose faith speaks to “a new generation who are deeply religious, philosophically postmodern, and passionately oriented to social justice.”

January 21 (7:00 p.m.) & 23 (10:00 a.m.):  Racial Justice.Massey Performing Arts Center. Rev. Brenda Salter McNeil is the author of The Heart of Racial Justice: How Soul Change Leads to Social Change and A Credible Witness: Reflections on Power, Evangelism and Race. She founded and directs both a ministry and a leadership-development organization devoted to racial and ethnic reconciliation and training. She earned a B.A. from Rutgers University, an M.Div. from Fuller Seminary, and a doctorate of ministry from Eastern Baptist Seminary.   Co-sponsored by the Martin Luther King, Jr. Committee

February 4:  Marian Wright Edelman. 10 a.m. - Massey Performing Arts Center.  Marian Wright Edelman is founder and president of the Children's Defense Fund.  A graduate of Yale Law School, she began her career in the mid-60s as the first black woman admitted to the Mississippi Bar.  She served as director of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund in Jackson, Mississippi before moving to Washington, D.C. in 1968 as counsel for Dr. Martin Luther King’s “Poor People's Campaign.”  She served as the Director of the Center for Law and Education at Harvard University before founding the Children’s Defense Fund in l973. She has received many honorary degrees and awards including a MacArthur Foundation Prize Fellowship, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and the Robert F. Kennedy Lifetime Achievement Award for her writings, which include eight books, the latest of which is The Sea is So Wide and My Boat is So Small: Charting a Course for the Next Generation. Co-sponsored by the College of Arts & Sciences and the School of Religion

February 13: Sex and the Soul. 10 a.m. – Neely Hall.
Dr. Donna Freitas, author of Sex & the Soul:  Juggling Sexuality, Spirituality, Romance, and Religion on America’s College Campuses (Oxford), teaches at Boston University and is a popular author and commentator on faith and culture.

February 25: 
Ash Wednesday Service10 a.m. – Neely Hall.   Belmont University marks the beginning of Lent with this ecumenical worship service conducted by Bishop David Choby and Rev. Todd Lake.

March 4: 10 a.m. – Psychology & Faith. Neely Hall.  Dr. David Myers, author of psychology’s most widely used text book, is an award-winning researcher and professor.  The most recent of his 17 books is A Friendly Letter to Skeptics and Atheists: Musings on Why God is Good and Faith Isn’t Evil. Co-sponsored by the Department of Psychology and the Gordon E. Inman College of Health Sciences

Faith-Informed Academics:  A continuing series of convocations with Belmont deans and faculty about how our common confession that Jesus Christ is Lord affects our life and work.

March 18:  Faith-Informed Liberal Arts & Sciences. 10 a.m. – Neely Hall. Dr. Bryce Sullivan, Dean of Belmont’s College of Arts & Sciences, speaks about how his Christian faith informs his life and work as an academic leader. 

March 25:  Faith-Informed Physics. 10 a.m. – Neely Hall.  Belmont physicists Drs. Scott Hawley, Steve Robinson and Christian Thomas talk about the ways in which their Christian faith informs their life and work as physics professors.   

April 1:  The Faith of a Scientist. 10 a.m. – Beaman A & B. Dr. Jennifer Wiseman is Chief of the NASA-Goddard Laboratory for ExoPlanets and Stellar Astrophysics and a former Congressional Science Fellow.  She received her B.A. in physics from MIT and her Ph.D. in astronomy from Harvard. Wiseman discovered a comet now named after her and teaches at Johns Hopkins University. Co-sponsored by the School of Sciences

April 17:  Novelist Bret Lott. 10 a.m. – Neely Hall. When Oprah Winfrey chose Bret Lott’s novelJewel for her book club, this respected literary writer and professor of writing at the College of Charleston was catapulted to No. 1 on the bestseller lists. Lott has spent a career crafting a highly acclaimed body of work, including eight novels, three short story collections and a memoir. His most recent novel is Ancient HighwayCo-sponsored by the Department of English 


Friday, May 15: Baccalaureate, 2:00 p.m. Belmont Heights Baptist Church. 'Baccalaureate: A Service of Ordination to Daily Work' is a part of the Spring Commencement celebratory events for graduates and their families. The service will feature graduating seniors who will share how God is calling them to use what they have learned at Belmont to serve others. The university expects that all undergraduate degree candidates will attend this inspiring event.



May 28-31:   Christian Community Health Fellowship National Conference

The Rev. G. Scott Morris, M.D., founder of the Church Health Center in Memphis, with 30,000 patient visits annually. 

Dr. Barbara Williams-Skinner is former executive director of the Congressional Black Caucus and chair of the Christian Community Development Association. 

Dr. John Perkins has written ten books, been awarded seven honorary doctorates, and founded both the CCHF and the Christian Community Development Association.