Reverend Willie Bodrick II, MDiv '14, was installed as Senior Pastor at Roxbury’s Twelfth Baptist Church, making him the second-youngest pastor in the church’s 181-year history, and its youngest in the last 145 years.
"May we always make neighbors of strangers. May we learn to love them as we love ourselves. And may we forever welcome the lost and the lonely and the forgotten as our own into this, our church home," said Matthew Ichihashi Potts, Plummer Professor of Christian Morals and Pusey Minister in the Memorial Church.
Dallas pastor Richie Butler, MTS '96, has blazed a trail through the worlds of real estate and ministry in Texas and nationwide, developing more than $500 million in urban properties, leading iconic Black churches and launching initiatives to combat racism and deliver COVID-19 testing and vaccinations to communities of color.
"As people are leaving formal institutions—they're no longer members of a congregation—it doesn't mean that their spirituality no longer exists. They're still looking for community. They're still looking for mentorship and intergenerational connection. And for most of them they still believe in God or a higher power," says Casper ter Kuile, HDS Ministry Innovation Fellow.
Preventing and healing child abuse involves more than medical care or social work. For many, particularly those whose abuse involved religious figures, it must incorporate faith as well. “Faith and Flourishing: Strategies for Preventing and Healing Child Sexual Abuse,” an online symposium on April 8 co-sponsored by Harvard Divinity School, will bring together survivors, public health experts, and religious leaders from various traditions to explore best practices for confronting and ending such abuse as well as promoting recovery.
The Rev. Mel Kawakami, MDiv '74, ThM '85, is a retired pastor and pastoral counselor for the United Methodist Church. He spent his career helping communities devastated by unexpected loss, including his tenure as pastor of the Newtown United Methodist Church in the heart of Sandy Hook, Connecticut.