It’s been more than a week since I arrived in Berkeley and assumed the duties of President here at Starr King. There have been lots of introductions and lots of paperwork, and a fair amount of finding my way around. But mostly, I have been filled with great happiness because I am finally here, finally beginning the work of leading this amazing theological school.
I am filled with a sense of gratitude, particularly for all of you who made a point of seeking me out at our General Assembly to wish me well and to pledge your support to the school. Thank you for letting all of us at GA know what Starr King means to you, for attending our excellent workshops on topics like Sacred Activism, and for your standing-room-only presence at the annual Starr King President’s Lecture. We are very conscious of the recent challenges we have faced, and we continue to attend to them. But first and foremost, we are focused on our bright future: our annual symposium with noted Buddhist teacher angel Kyodo Williams; the start of a new school year and the many eager students who will be coming to join us for the first time; the arrival of the first of two Balazs scholars this year, both of whom are professors at our sister seminary in Koloszvar, Transylvania; the continued rise in the number of students from other religious traditions-I could go on, but you get the idea!
Right now, the school is as quiet as it ever gets. Our students are away for the summer, immersed in Clinical Pastoral Education units, working on summer projects, or taking a few precious weeks off. Our faculty is resting too, and preparing for the start of our school year in late August. Our dedicated staff is gearing up to welcome everyone, and to make the experience at Symposium one that our attendees will always remember. Soon, our silent halls will be filled with students engaged in the holy work of training for religious leadership.
I wish you could be with us as we begin this new chapter in the life of our school! Perhaps you can–if you’d like to join us for Symposium, visit our website SKSM Symposium 2014 for more information and to register. If you can’t be with us in body, please join us in spirit; keep us in your thoughts and prayers as we take up our work and witness for liberal religion in this, our 111th year.
If you have comments or questions about the school, or would like to know more about ways you can support Starr King, please be in touch-I’d love to hear from you. My email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. Many blessings to you!