Center for Religious Wisdom & World Affairs2020-03-18T13:01:44-07:00

About the Center

Seattle University School of Theology and Ministry’s Center for Religious Wisdom & World Affairs pursues theological engagement that is focused upon three public commitments, these being: The formation of students, the enhancement of resilient religious communities and a deeper awareness of religion within greater society.  In its focus and work, the Center assists: faith-based leaders in their community engagement, scholars in the research and practical application of their thought, and students who contribute to the interchange for becoming compelling public leaders capable of presenting the wisdom of religious traditions to the broader community.


Upcoming Events

Arun Gandhi

Dr. Arun Gandhi Coming in April 2021
UPDATE: Dr.Gandhi’s visit has been postponed to April 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic

Dr. Arun Gandhi, grandson of Mahatma Gandhi, and author of The Gift of Anger: And Other Lessons From My Grandfather Mahatma Gandhi will be visiting the Center in April 2021. At that time he will co-teach with Center Director Dr. Michael Reid Trice among other activities. Stay tuned.

New Resources

HomelessnessThe Center is introducing new resources in collaboration with several organizations. Click on the left-hand sidebar to view the three new resources.
Sounding @ the Center
Homelessness Resource
Seeking Wisdom Series

Our Work

Every three to four years, the Center for Religious Wisdom & World Affairs focuses on a specific social issue. In the 2016-2020 cycle, the Center is addressing homelessness & the affordable housing crisis.

As our current work on homelessness draws to its conclusion, the Center team reached out to local faith-based organizations and community stakeholders in the creation of a new online resource on Homelessness, available for use in local communities.  That resource will continue to grow and refine and is available to our three publics: students, religious communities, and greater society.  Finally, a forthcoming book on the results of our study on Homelessness is anticipated in 2021.  We’ll keep you appraised.

In addition, the Center is focused upon twice-annual Symposia, called Soundings that address significant theological content while cutting across the grain of societal incohesive or hunger points, which require theological engagement today. The first Sounding took place on January 22nd, 2020. This Sounding, titled Reimagining Christian Unity in Pluralistic Society, included senior leadership from the National Council of Churches of Christ in the USA, as well as administrators, professors, ecclesial leaders, and students, with participants from the generation Z, millennial, generation X, and boomer demographics.  Click on the sidebar to learn more about the Soundings and how you can create a similar opportunity in your own community.

Homelessness & the Affordable Housing Crisis

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The Center for Religious Wisdom & World Affairs integrates scholarly examination of pressing social problems with solution-oriented responses initiated by communities of faith and their organizations. Every three to four years, the Center addresses a specific social issue. The current focus is on homelessness and the affordable housing crisis.

During each issue cycle, the Center:

  • Supports interdisciplinary research on faith-based responses to the issue at hand
  • Convenes local faith-based organizations to problem solve on how to more effectively address this social issue
  • Provides learning opportunities to graduate students specializing in faith-based community development and public theology
  • Brings together Center Scholars, local faith-based organizations, community stakeholders and graduate students for two symposia at Seattle University
  • Disseminates its knowledge base through a series of professional development courses, a toolkit of good practices and lessons learned, and a collected volume

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Rise in Homelessness Driven by West Coast Housing Crisis
According to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, on any one night in 2017, 553,742 people were homeless in the United States.  This represents an increase of about one percent since 2016. Though in some regions progress has been made in tackling this social problem, in many high-cost areas – especially along the West Coast – a shortage of affordable housing is driving upward the number of homeless individuals. Though Seattle is the 18th largest city in the country, it has the third largest homeless population (11,643), just behind New York (76,501) and Los Angeles (55,188), and followed by San Diego (9,160), District of Columbia (7,473), San Jose/Santa Clara (7,394) and San Francisco (6,858).

Minority Populations Disproportionately Impacted
While African Americans make up 13% of the country’s population, they represent 41% of people experiencing homelessness.  Native Americans and Hispanics, too, are disproportionately impacted by this social problem. The higher prevalence of homelessness among minority populations is the result of institutionalized discrimination in employment, housing, and the criminal justice system. Homelessness, in this sense, is a symptom of inequalities of place and of the compounding effects of poverty, social exclusion, and the retreat of public institutions.

Critical Role of FBOs
As key actors in the social welfare system of the United States, faith-based organizations (FBOs) – including congregations and faith-inspired non-profit organizations – have long contributed to addressing homelessness. FBOs play an important role in the governance of local Continuum of Care programs. They provide about 30% of emergency shelter beds and have the capacity to house more than 150,000 people a night in different types of housing (National Alliance to End Homelessness). And they mobilize crucial support for community initiatives like tent encampments and advocate for enabling policies and legislation.

In addition to social service provision and advocacy, FBOs also care for the spiritual needs of homeless individuals. This focus on holistic care grounds the unique contributions FBOs make to the issue. It is the conviction, for example, that homelessness cannot be reduced to a problem that needs fixing. That it needs to be understood in terms of restoring right relationships. It is the idea that public theologies and prophetic voices are essential for a just society and a flourishing democracy.

Current Center Initiatives
How can FBOs more effectively and meaningfully address homelessness and the affordable housing crisis? How can the wisdom of different religious traditions be leveraged to reimagine solutions to this intractable social problem? These are two questions orienting the work of the Center for Religious Wisdom & World Affairs during this issue cycle.

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Innovative Research
Following a call for proposals that attracted over 120 submissions, the Center invited a cohort of social scientists and theologians to Seattle University in April 2017 to discuss potential research themes at a three-day symposium. Since then, these scholars have been interfacing with each other, local faith-based organizations and community partners through videoconferencing sessions and the University’s learning management system. Center scholars returned to Seattle University in April 2018 to present their research during a second symposium.

This research will be published in a collected volume that combines interdisciplinary curiosity, interreligious engagement and practical concerns about the role of FBOs in local efforts to tackle homelessness. Specific themes include:

  • Coast Salish spiritual practices in the face of homelessness in British Columbia
  • Faith-based initiatives at the Haven for Hope center in San Antonio
  • FBO partnerships, the prison industrial complex and homelessness in Milwaukee
  • Spirituality of homeless persons in Seattle’s Capitol Hill district

Capacity Building
The Puget Sound Interfaith Network for Public Theology, a working group of local faith-based organizations, religious leaders and community partners, meets periodically to explore the challenges and opportunities of more effective faith-based responses to homelessness and the affordable housing crisis. This cohort also provides strategic guidance for the Center’s evidence gathering initiatives and continuing education programming.

The first half of the Network meetings consists of a moderated discussion among members, graduate student affiliates and a select number of community partners around a specific capacity-building theme and its theological significance; and the second half involves a videoconference dialogue with a Center scholar about her or his ongoing research projects.

Meeting themes include:

  • The complex landscape of local faith-based interventions
  • Interfaith public theologies of homelessness
  • Tent encampments
  • Inequalities of place and the geography of opportunity
  • Improving accountability through ethnography
  • Gentrification and market-based initiatives
  • Religious land use issues
  • Fostering interfaith & cross-sector partnerships
  • Enhancing the recruitment, training and retention of volunteers

Community Resources
Drawing on the research of Center Scholars and the work of its Puget Sound Network, the Center offers professional development courses for local religious leaders, non-profit executives, social service providers or community organizers interested in honing their skills around faith-based community engagement related to homelessness and affordable housing.

These courses grapple with issues, concepts and strategies the religious leader or community partner can use when putting together a grant proposal, engaging City Hall, or rolling out a new initiative. Each course provides a space to problem-solve around how faith-based organizations and other community stakeholders might work better and more meaningfully together to tackle homelessness and related social problems.

The Center will also develop a toolkit that identifies key challenges for more effective faith-based responses to homelessness at the local level; examines successful faith-based interventions in urban centers across the country and globe; and considers new and innovative initiatives for faith-based action around homelessness.

Next Issue

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Every three to four years, the Center for Religious Wisdom & World Affairs focuses on a specific social issue. In the 2016-2019 cycle, the Center is addressing homelessness & the affordable housing crisis.

As our current work on homelessness advances, the Center team has also begun to reach out to local faith-based organizations and other community stakeholders to explore what issue the Center should address next. As part of this consultation process, the Center is circulating a survey.

What issue do you think the Center should focus on from 2019 to 2022? Please take a minute or two to give us your feedback. We need and value your input as we seek to ensure the Center is as responsive as possible to the issues affecting our local community.

Take the Survey >>

Meet the Center Team

Rev. Michael Reid Trice, Ph.D.Michael Reid Trice, PhD
Director, Center for Religious Wisdom & World Affairs, Spehar-Halligan Professor
Phone: (206) 296-5332
Building/Room: Hunthausen Hall

Dr. Michael Reid Trice, PhD serves as the Director of the Center for Religious Wisdom & World Affairs, and is an Associate Professor of Constructive Theology at Seattle University. In this capacity, Dr. Trice is the P.I. for numerous grants associated with the Center and is responsible for leading a team forward in administrating the mandates of the Center at the axis of scholarship and curriculum advancement. As a public theologian, Dr. Trice is a scholar, speaker, and writer in his fields.

Trice is also the Co-Founder of the Religica Theo Lab (theological laboratory) that is a site of engagement for students, faculty and society in order to test the hypotheses regarding the manifold role of religion in public life. Utilizing a constructively theological methodology across a larger public, Dr. Trice uses the lab in order to test new content with public assessment, which is then refined into methods that inform curricular generation through the auspices of the Center and for student formation in the classroom.

Dr. Trice served as the Secretary for the Parliament of the World’s Religions from 2016-2019, and provides leadership on the Interfaith and Faith and Order commissions of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA; he has served on international boards including Church World Service.

Dr. Trice publishes widely in the areas of Constructive Theology, Theological Pluralism, Interreligious and Comparative Religious, Ecumenism, and More. You can find his full Curriculum Vitae Here.

Karen FujiiKaren Fujii, PhD Candidate
Educational Technology and Program Director
Phone: (206) 220-8591
Building/Room: Hunthausen Hall

Karen Fujii serves as the Educational Technology and Project Manager for the Center for Religious Wisdom & World Affairs. Prior to this position, she was the Director of Marketing and Communications at the School of Theology and Ministry. Karen has an extensive marketing background in digital advertising, search, A/B testing, and programmatic. With a master’s in educational technology, a graduate certificate in online learning and teaching, Karen is pursing her PhD studies in educational technology at the University of Hawaii at Manoa.

Kelly Curtis

Kelly Curtis
Student Affiliate
Phone: (206) 296-2661
Building/Room: Hunthausen Hall

Program: Political Science
Hobbies: Baking, painting, reading, watching Netflix, and swing dancing.

What excites you about your work at the center?
“I enjoy learning from others on how to understand and solve the larger problems we face as a local and global community, and the Center helps connect many different stories in order to fully understand these problems.”

Lotchie KerchLotchie Kerch
Student Affiliate
Phone: (206) 296-2661
Building/Room: Hunthausen Hall

Program: Masters in Pastoral Studies
Hobbies: Experiencing awe in the garden, around the bend on the trail, at the bird feeder, while reading a great book or listening to music. I am a news aficionado. My wanderlust stirs me to travel to the Seven Seas and the Seven Continents. I have a fondness for language, history, architecture, and cinema.

What excites you about your work at the center?
This work at the Center is an exciting opportunity to engage in relationship with the broader campus and community on issues of import with the intent to bring metanoia, to change hearts and minds for the common good.

Shannon Maricielo, MS
Student Affiliate
Phone: (206) 296-2661
Building/Room: Hunthausen Hall

Program: Master of Arts in Couples & Family Therapy
Hobbies: Spending time with my family and friends in nature, hiking, jogging, and playing in the water. I also enjoy reading and traveling.

What excites you about your work at the center?
“Our work at the center is relevant and inspiring on many levels. I am truly grateful to be part of a team with like-minded people locally, and around the globe, who are collaborating to respond to a pressing social issue from a faith-based perspective.”

Richard PallangyoRichard Augustino Pallangyo
Student Affiliate
Phone: (206) 296-5336
Building/Room: Hunthausen Hall

Program: Computer Science 2021
Hobbies: Listening to music, helping others, cooking, going to movies, biking, and watching sports.

What excites you about your work at the center?
“I was drawn to the center by its focus to wisely solve today’s social issues such as homelessness. It’s an honor to me that the work I will be doing at the center is going to contribute to the world positively.”

Noah TuroskiNoah Turoski
Student Affiliate
Phone: (206) 296-5336
Building/Room: Hunthausen Hall

Program: Mechanical Engineering
Hobbies: I sing, play guitar and bass, build computers, and do woodworking as hobbies!

What excites you about your work at the center?
“I’m excited to play with and learn podcast editing techniques at the center!”

Rose MurphyRose Murphy
Student Affiliate
Phone: (206) 296-2661
Building/Room: Hunthausen Hall

Program: Public Affairs and Theology & Religious Studies
Hobbies: Baking, reading, trying new restaurants, exploring Seattle, travel, and spending time with friends!

What excites you about your work at the center?
“I am excited to help connect the work of the Center to other schools and programs and make that information more accessible. There are very few programs, if any, doing similar work to what’s happening at the Center, and I’m excited to continue in that work.”

Sounding @ the Center

Seattle University
Casey Commons – 5th Floor

Center Sounding

What is a Sounding?  The Center is committed to facilitating public conversations that positively impact three publics: Student leaders, religious influencers in their respective communities, and greater society with an ear to enhanced public discourse.  A Sounding is a full-day event where we ask one question.  In the below agenda, you’ll see that question separated into four portions. Participants co-lead each portion with an intentional conversation during the day together.

January 2020 Sounding: — Reimagining Christian Unity in Pluralistic Society, drew together faculty, clergy, students, and additional community leaders for a full day of conversation.  In addition, General Secretary of the National Council of the Churches of Christ, Rev. Dr. Jim Winkler, helped to lead the conversation.  Participants drew from the generation Z, Millennial, Generation X, and Boomer demographics.

What do I do with this Resource? Please use it! Review the agenda below. Listen to the Podcast discussion between Jim Winkler and Michael Reid Trice. Click on the photos of all attendees to see videos of them answering key questions from the day.  And then, consider creating a Sounding in your own community. Finally, tell us what you’ve created by writing to us at We’d like to hear from you and share your stories

Center Podcast

The Seattle Sounding

Seattle Sounding Jan 2020 Shorten Agenda

Click here to view the entire agenda.

Watch & Listen

Dr. Michael Reid Trice serves as the Director of the Center for Religious Wisdom & World Affairs, and is an Associate Professor of Constructive Theology at Seattle University.  In this capacity, Dr. Trice is the P.I. for numerous grants associated with the Center and is responsible for leading a team forward in administering the mandates of the Center at the axis of scholarship and curriculum advancement.

As a public theologian, Dr. Trice is a scholar, speaker, and writer in his field.  He is also the co-founder of Religica (, a theological laboratory constructed with the intent of students endeavoring alongside faculty in order to test hypotheses regarding the role of religion in public life.  Dr. Trice served as the Secretary for the Parliament of the World’s Religions from 2016-2019, and provides leadership on the Interfaith and Faith and Order commissions of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA; he has served on international boards including Church World Service. Michael’s current areas of academic interest include constructive theological responses to pluralism, interfaith encounter, and the interdisciplinary approaches to conflict transformation and structural cruelties.

Pastor Bryon Hansen is the Senior Pastor at Phinney Ridge Lutheran Church in Seattle, Washingston. He is a native of Washington State, born in Puyallup and attended Western Washington University in Bellingham. He studied further at Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary in Berkeley where he learned theology and pastoral ministry in the wonderful ecumenical mix of the Graduate Theological Union. Most recently, Pastor Hansen studied at the Lutheran School of Theology in Chicago, where he completed a Doctor of Ministry in preaching degree.

Ordained to the ministry of Word and Sacrament in 1986, Pastor Hansen has served congregations in Idaho, Oregon and Northern California. His passions in ministry are liturgy, preaching and faith formation for children, youth and adults. He believes these gifts from God powerfully shape and transform lives.

Presiding Elder Spencer Francis Barrett has served as the Presiding Elder of the Pacific Northwest Conference of the African Methodist Episcopal Church since November 2014. Prior to that time, Rev. Barrett was the pastor of Allen Afrcian Methodist Episcopal Church in Tacoma, Washington, beginning from 2009. Rev. Barrett has served on the Advisory Council for both the Ecumenical and Interreligious Office, as well as with the Center for Religious Wisdom & World Affairs, located at Seattle University. As one of the adjudicatory leaders in this region, Rev. Barrett attended the Interdenominational Theological Center at Turner Seminary, where he earned a Master of Divinity Degree.

Rev. Dr. Mark Chung Hearn, is a second-generation Korean American and the youngest child of immigrant parents. Dr. Hearn completed his undergraduate degree and Master of Divinity Degree from Point Loma Nazarene University and Asbury Theological Seminary respectively, as well as acquiring a Masters in Theological Studies from Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary and a Doctorate of Philosophy in Practical Theology with an emphasis in Religious Education and Spiritual Formation from Claremont School of Theology. Dr. Hearn’s book, Religious Experience among Second Generation Korean Americans (Palgrave Macmillan, 2016) explores the social construction of Korean American men and their spirituality within a U.S. context.

Rev. Dr. Kara Markel is an ordained minister in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and pastors a Disciples congregation in Kirkland, WA.  She also serves as a pastoral mentor with Disciples Seminary Foundation’s students in the Northwest and chairs the Commission on Ministry, the credentialing body of the Northern Lights Region of the CC(DoC). Spiritual formation is an essential element of every aspect of her work in the congregation, the Region and the academy. The particular challenge and gift of ecumenical formation is not only an important part of Disciples heritage and identity, but an essential competency for spiritual leaders in the changing religious landscape.

Dr. Mark S. Markuly is Dean of the School of Theology and Ministry at Seattle University. He earned a Ph.D. in education from St. Louis University and an MA in systematic theology from Aquinas Institute of Theology. He also has a BA in journalism from the School of Journalism at the University of Missouri-Columbia. Prior to joining Seattle University, Dean Markuly was associate professor of religion and education and director of the Loyola Institute for Ministry (LIM) of Loyola University New Orleans. Dean Markuly has published pieces on issues that reach across the religious/secular divide in society His course text for Loyola University, entitled Faith and Culture, focuses on the dialogue between theology and the social sciences, particularly sociology, anthropology, and economics.

Bishop Elaine Stanovsky appointed Rev. Troy Lynn Carr as pastor of Grace United Methodist Church. Rev. Troy Lynn Carr served Bryn Mawr United Methodist Church in South Seattle from 2016 -2018. Rev. Carr has an extensive pastoral background, and she has led several African Methodist Episcopal Church’s before serving the United Methodist Church. Rev. Carr is community orientated and served on community boards throughout her ministry. Rev. Carr holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Social Work from Roberts Wesleyan College, Rochester NY, a Masters of Divinity from Lutheran Theological Seminary (now United Theological Seminary), Gettysburg, PA, and five units of Clinical Pastoral Education, with a completed Residency from Riverside Hospital, Newport News, VA. Rev. Carr is currently a Doctor of Ministry candidate at Seattle University School of Theology and Ministry. Rev. Carr is an ordained Itinerant Elder in the AME tradition.

Michael Ramos is the Executive Director of the Church Council of Greater Seattle. Michael connects congregations in King and South Snohomish Counties, empowering them in working toward God’s shalom. He has worked on ecumenical community building for two decades and enjoys connecting spirituality with social justice. At the Church Council, confronting homelessness, immigration accompaniment and reform and building a living wage future have been his central commitments with faith communities throughout the region. Michael served as Director of Latino Ministries for the Catholic Diocese in Oakland in the mid-1990s before moving back to Seattle with his wife, Donna, and their two (now-grown) daughters. He holds a Masters of Divinity from Seattle University.  After growing up and going to college in New York City, Michael came to the Pacific Northwest thirty years ago.

Rev. Kathy Sharp. Following a business consulting career focused on public relations, change management, and human resources, Kathy became executive minister in the Pacific Northwest for her denomination, Community of Christ. Now retired, she continues to preach, teach, preside, fundraise and organize within Community of Christ. She works for justice for women, LGBTQIA people, people of color, religious minorities, and immigrants and refugees seeking asylum in the United States. Kathy has been a religious representative with Seattle University since 2007. She and her husband live in Bothell, WA, and enjoy travel and their six local grandchildren.

Linzi Stahlecker, MDiv Episcopal Student.  After graduating with a BSc. in Psychology from University College London, Linzi spent close to a decade working as a researcher and producer of broadcast media. Moving to Seattle in the early 2000’s Linzi transitioned into marketing and spent the next few years working in a variety of roles at Eddie Bauer. After the birth of her third child, she left Eddie Bauer’s senior management team to retrain and serve as a birth doula. Deeply interested in the connection between mind and body, Linzi also qualified as a personal trainer to enable her clients to cultivate confidence and self-belief through deeper knowledge of their embodied selves in movement.

Linzi was baptized as an adult following a profoundly destabilizing, life re-orienting conversion experience. She is currently an MDiv student at Seattle University’s School of Theology and Ministry. Linzi is a committed Anglican and a postulant for holy orders in The Episcopal Church.

Rev. Dr. Kelly Wadsworth is a Seattle-based pastor and preacher. For over 15 years she has served in parish ministry, hospital chaplaincy, and military service. She currently serves as the Lead Pastor at Alki UCC Church in West Seattle. In 2018, she earned her PhD from Saybrook University in Psychology with a focus on consciousness, spirituality, and integrated health. Her work centers on the spiritual and psychological encounters between peace and war with her most recent publication titled Profoundly changed: The homecoming of veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan.  She regularly speaks about the intersection between faith and culture including the existential questions in our times and the gift of phenomenology to the faith community. She received her M.Div from Princeton Theological Seminary (2003) which included 7 units of Clinical Pastoral Education and an emphasis in theology and public policy. Her B.A. was in International Political Economics from the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, WA.

The Rev. Shelley Bryan Wee was born in Springfield, Oregon. Her family settled in Colville, Washington after living in a few other states. Following high school graduation, Shelley attended Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, Washington. There she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications Arts (emphasis in Public Relations) with a minor in Business Administration (emphasis in Marketing). She then earned a Master of Divinity degree from Luther Northwestern Theological Seminary (now Luther Seminary).

Bishop Bryan Wee was ordained in 1993, and has served as pastor in these ministry sites: Jocko Valley Lutheran Church in Arlee, Montana; Zion Lutheran Church in Spokane, Washington; Emmanuel Lutheran Church and Eastern Washington University Campus Ministry in Cheney, Washington. She served as Assistant to the Bishop in the Northwest Washington Synod prior to her being elected to bishop of the Northwest Washington Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) in May 2019.

Senior Rabbi Daniel Weiner believes passionately in building Judaism for the 21st century and in healing the world through social justice.  Temple De Hirsch Sinai has grown to more than 5000 members and 1,600 families in two campuses in Seattle and Bellevue since he took charge in 2001. His innovations in worship include producing “rabcasts” on video, bringing services to travelers and shut-ins on the internet and leading a rock band in popular Rock Shabbat services. He tweets @rocknrabbidanny.

Weiner and his team won the Religion Action Center’s Fain Award for their campaign on gun responsibility.  Rabbi Weiner’s efforts with other clergy contributed to the founding of the Washington Alliance for Gun Responsibility, which drafted and helped pass Initiative 594 in 2014.  Work on implementation of the law and about gun responsibility continues. His columns have appeared in The Seattle Times, Seattle Post-Intelligencer and Haaretz.  Weiner wrote “Good God: Faith for the Rest of Us” about the dangerous polarization between fanatical faith and soulless secularism.

Jim Winkler is well-known among United Methodists for his nearly 30 years of service at the General Board of Church and Society of The United Methodist Church. Following his election as general secretary in 2000, Winkler focused on the implementation of the United Methodist Social Principles through education, witness, and advocacy. In 2013, Winkler was elected as president and general secretary of the NCC. The NCC is an ecumenical partnership of thirty-eight Christian faith groups in the United States which seeks to address mass incarceration, interreligious relationships, and racism. Winkler studied African history at the University of Illinois, received a master’s degree in American history at George Mason University, and was granted an honorary doctor of divinity degree from Claremont School of Theology.

Center Sounding

Homeless person sleeping on a bench

This resource on the challenges of homelessness explores the crossroads of shelterlessness from multiple perspectives and faith traditions.  Scholars, practitioners, and those with lived experiences of homelessness, provide background and insights on the complexities of the challenges that impact this issue. This resource further invites you, the viewer and listener, into the conversation through reflection prompts and activities associated with each theme. The Center Team hopes you will actively engage this resource and will invite these difficult, but important conversations into your education and community. As this resource continues to grow and evolve, you are encouraged to check back for new opportunities to view, listen, and engage new information. Please send your suggestions to

Click here to enter the Homelessness Project Canvas site

Click here to enter the Homelessness Project WordPress site

The Seeking Wisdom Series originated in 2018 in the Religica Theological Laboratory with the idea that ‘wisdom is free.’  The TheoLab has three publics in mind:

  • The university
  • Religious and spiritual traditions in local contexts around the world
  • Society-at-large

Members from within these publics share insights – drawn from their lives and professions – in order to enhance society.  Videos include reflection questions and activities that individuals and communities can use for free.
Center for Religious Wisdom & World Affairs, the Seeking Wisdom Series is enhancing insight, talent, and resources toward educating the changing classroom.

We hope that you enjoy the series, and with gratitude to so many individuals who enhance wisdom in our lives.

Click here to enter the Seeking Wisdom Series Canvas site

January 16, 2020

Rev. Michael Reid Trice, Ph.D.From the Director:
Renowned Scottish Poet, Robert Burns, penned Auld Lang Syne in 1788. You might recognize it, as scores of millions sing it around the world at the stroke of midnight as we ring in a New Year. The poem begins with a question: Should we forget those who have shaped our past in the “long, long ago?” The poem concludes that, rather than forgetfulness, we may instead raise kindness by the cupful in the promises of the coming year. Like a year gone by, the new Center team and Advisory Council are building upon the shoulders of three years past. Cups of kindness mean we value that past and build toward the future. The future includes a forthcoming book with Fordham Press, which covers our first major study of the Center. And, we are building new resources and opportunities as you’ll read below. We begin 2020 with clarity of vision, appreciation for the long, long ago, and a cup of kindness to all of you, as we envision all that we have in store for this academic year.

HomelessnessCenter Resources on Homelessness:
The Center is creating a new set of online resources on the topic of homelessness and shelterlessness, which includes video and audio podcasts, reflection and interactivity suggestions, and relevant links used and recommended by colleagues from local to international contexts. These are adaptable and will be available for use in Canvas (and Canvas Commons), as part of the Center’s commitment to both meeting the expectations of the Henry Luce Foundation, and to providing resources across Seattle University with our faculty colleagues in mind.

Office conference tableThe Center Sounding:
Twice a year the Center hosts a Sounding (literally, to give airtime to a specific inquiry of inquiry or study). Each Sounding focuses a full day on a single question. The Center’s January 22nd 2020 Sounding is focused upon the changing realities of unity in an age of pluralism.  Jim Winkler, General Secretary of the United States National Council of Churches, will provide the keynote alongside other scholars and practitioners. In February, a resource will be created in Canvas Commons that will include the agenda, podcasts, and video interviews, for use in the university classroom.

Arun GandhiDr. Arun Gandhi:
UPDATE: Dr. Gandhi’s visit has been postponed to April 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic
The grandson of Mahatma Gandhi is coming to visit the Center and the University the week of April 21st. The Center is hosting a lunch on Monday, April 19th (which is also International Holocaust Remembrance Day, or Yom Hashoah), on the topic of non-violence. Dr. Gandhi will present on an evening to be determined on the Memories of Grandfather, with an emphasis on the wisdom of our elders for the affairs of the world. Be on the look-out for more information.