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2019 Blandy Lectures and Alumni Convocation

Nov 7, 2019 - Nov 9, 2019

We invite you to the 2019 Blandy Lectures and Alumni Convocation!

Join us for the convocation on November 7–9, 2019.

Alongside thoughtful programming, Blandy offers alumni, students, faculty, and friends of the seminary an opportunity to reconnect through worship, fun, and fellowship. In addition to the thought-provoking speaker and programming, attendees are invited to worship in Christ Chapel, a fun Friday night dinner, and to cheer on the ThuriBulls at the annual Polity Bowl.

In a world where our awareness and understanding of mental-health issues is growing, Blandy lecturer Dr. Warren Kinghorn will speak to the convocation about the intersection of Christian communities and mental-health care, especially around the issue of moral injury.


Register today:

Learn more about the entire 3 day event below:

Keynote Lectures by Dr. Warren Kinghorn

Thursday, November 7: Walking with Veterans After War: Combat Trauma, Moral Injury, and the Journey Home
Around 1 in 5 veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as many veterans of other conflicts, meet criteria for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and many veterans live with difficult memories of actions witnessed or done in war, which is often described as “moral injury.”  The experiences now known as moral injury were deeply connected to the rise of the diagnosis of PTSD, were systematically forgotten, and are now being recognized and remembered.   But moral injury cannot be reduced to a clinical category; rather, in pointing beyond individual veterans to the social and moral context of war and military life, moral injury demands that veterans be recognized not as bearers of unwanted psychiatric symptoms but as moral and spiritual agents who are seeking to survive in a morally fragmented world.   Veterans with moral injury, in other words, are not machines that need fixing but wayfarers who need connection and accompaniment.  Engaging clinical, ethical, political, and theological dimensions of moral injury, we will explore steps for walking faithfully and helpfully with returning combat veterans in ways that honor agency, promote connection, and encourage vocation.


Dr. Kinghorn’s lecture on Thursday, November 7 at 7:30 p.m. is free and open to the public. 


Friday, November 8: From Control to Wonder: Action, Contemplation, and Modern Mental Health Care

Mental health care, especially the practice of psychiatry, is often focused on establishing and maintaining control over distressing or disvalued emotion, experience, and behavior.   Control over one’s body and one’s life is an important human good, especially for survivors of trauma.   But control is not the highest good, and programs of mental health care that focus on control may promote unhealthy practices of self-surveillance and subjection to technologies of control.   By contrast, Christian reflection on action and contemplation has often emphasized that control is a proximate good that enables and points toward the higher goods of love, wonder, and contemplation.   What would it look like for mental health care practices to be oriented not toward control but toward wonder?   Focusing on St. Thomas Aquinas’ treatment of the active life and contemplative life (Summa theologiae IIaIIae qq. 179-182), we will explore the role of prudence and the moral virtues in framing healthy strategies of control that yet point beyond themselves toward the capacity for love and wonder for God and for all that God has made-and how mental health care would look different as a result.

Continuing Education

Several continuing education sessions will be offered, including:

  • Undoing Anti-Judaism in the Liturgy presented by The Rev. Dan Joslyn-Siemiatkoski and Rabbi Neil Blumofe.
  • New Telemental Health Practices: Ethics, Rules and Clinical Considerations presented by the Southwest Counseling Faculty

Worship in Christ Chapel

Thursday, November 7
5:30pm Alumni Eucharist
The Rev. Eric Hungerford ’10, Preaching
The Rev. Kathy Pfister ’10, Presiding
Friday, November 8
9:30am Morning Prayer
11:45am Jazz Noonday Eucharist
The Very Rev. Cynthia Briggs Kittredge, ThD, Preaching
The Rev. Justin Lindstrom ’99 Presiding
5:00pm Evening Prayer
Organized by The Loise Henderson Wessendorf Center for Christian Ministry and Vocation

Dinner, Live Music and more!

“Wendy Colonna is not just a singer-songwriter, she’s a force of nature.” – Austin American-Statesman

Blandy revs up as it winds down with dinner, live music, and a pep rally for our ThuriBulls in the next day’s Polity Bowl. Austin singer-songwriter Wendy Colonna will entertain with her soulful style that has been described as a soul singer, who, “delivers hard-hitting truths about loss, anguish, and love.”

Learn more at wendycolonna.com

Find the full Blandy schedule below.

For more information, please contact Katherine Bailey Brown, director of annual giving and alumni relations, at katherine.brown@ssw.edu or 512.472.4133 ext. 333.


Full Blandy schedule:

Thursday, November 7

1:30                 Registration, light bites, and drinks

1:45                 Welcome and Overview

2:00                 Continuing Ed Session 1: Undoing Anti-Judaism in the Liturgy, The Rev. Dan Joslyn-Siemiatkoski, PhD & Rabbi Neil Blumofe

3:00                 Break

3:15                 Continuing Ed Session 2: Undoing Anti-Judaism in the Liturgy, The Rev. Dan Joslyn-Siemiatkoski, PhD & Rabbi Neil Blumofe

4:15                 Break

5:30                 Alumni Eucharist

6:30                 Dinner & Presentation of Hal Brook Perry Award

7:30                 Warren Kinghorn Lecture: Walking with Veterans After War: Combat Trauma, Moral Injury, and the Journey Home

8:45                 Dessert Reception


Friday, November 8

8:30                 Breakfast with the Dean

9:30                 Morning Prayer

10:15               Warren Kinghorn Lecture: From Control to Wonder: Action, Contemplation, and Modern Mental Health Care

11:15               Break

11:30-1:30       Center Continuing Ed Lunch & Learn: Telemental Health- Ethics and Practice Considerations, Southwest Faculty

11:45               Holy Eucharist

12:30               Lunch Panel Discussion

1:45                 Share Shop Session 1

3:00                 Break

3:15                 Share Shop 2

4:30                 Break

5:00                 Evening Prayer

5:30                 Polity Bowl Pep Rally

6:00                 Celebration Dinner

6:30                 Live Music


Saturday, November 9

10:00               Polity Bowl