On Saturday, February 13, 2010, the second annual Search for Meaning: Pacific Northwest Spirituality Book Festival brought together the best regional authors and works on issues of spirituality, faith, church-state matters, and theology. This year, 50 regional and national authors, including SU faculty hosted inter-active sessions on diverse topics. Two of the festival’s presentations were in Spanish, facilitated by STM faculty, Dr. Leticia Guardiola Saenz and SU faculty, Gabriella Gutiérrez y Muhs.
Keynote speaker, Kathleen Norris is the award-winning poet, writer, and author of The New York Times’ bestsellers The Cloister Walk, Dakota: A Spiritual Geography, Amazing Grace: A Vocabulary of Faith, and The Virgin of Bennington. A second keynote speaker, Gustav Niebuhr is associate professor of religion and the media at Syracuse University. A former reporter for The New York Times and The Washington Post, he is the author of “Beyond Tolerance: How People Across America Are Building Bridges Between Faiths.”
“Today, many of us are looking for new meaning and purpose in our lives, and the book festival helps people explore these issues,” said Mark Markuly, dean of the School of Theology and Ministry. “When you put together intelligence, faith or spiritual commitment with self-reflection, you come up with a powerful, life and world transforming combination,” said, Markuly. “These authors have taken on the difficult job of wrestling with our role in the world and human meaning.”
Karen Kissel Wegela, Ph.D., Professor from Naropa University shared her experience as a participant: “I am writing to thank you for inviting me to participate in the Search for Meaning book festival…It was an utterly delightful event, and I so enjoyed being at Seattle University again.”
Pat Whitney, SU volunteer, wrote: “I met several people who had seen the article in The Seattle Times and came as a result of that notice. They were universally overwhelmed by the level of speakers and discussions and so very grateful that SU would make something of this caliber available to the public as a public service – i.e. for free. It was an honor to be part of it!”
To hear recordings of the keynote speeches, please go to the STM web site at: http://www.seattleu.edu/stm/Default.aspx.
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