Seattle University Opens New Center for Religious Wisdom and World Affairs
Seattle University is a Jesuit Catholic university with more than 7,400 students enrolled in undergraduate and graduate programs. To support its student base, the university opened a new Center for Religious Wisdom and World Affairs. The center is part of the School of Theology and Ministry and focuses on faith and social action.
Manuel Mejido, PhD, was appointed as the center’s inaugural director. He’s a former United Nations official and will use his experience and knowledge to integrate the center into curriculum and community education efforts. “The Center for Religious Wisdom and World Affairs will explore the best in faith-based and spiritually informed thinking about some of the major global issues causing human suffering, as well as the most effective social action flowing from that thinking,” Mejido said in a news release.
According to Mark Markuly, the dean of the Theology School, the center will be devoted to exploring how religious wisdom contributes to our understanding of the world and how we respond to the world’s biggest social issues. The center will welcome religious scholars, leaders and practitioners and will be an invaluable resource for Seattle University students.
Students will be able to use the new center to explore and cultivate their own vision and understanding of faith and how to use it for the public good. The goal is to further promote and enhance the university’s faith-based education program and to work in concert with the programs that already encourage students to work in social services such as counseling agencies, hospitals, prisons, humanitarian missions and more.
The center will be supported by funds from private funding from donors and organizations nationwide. A few of the backers include Henry Luce and Arthur Vining Davis Foundations, Seattle Foundation and Shemanski Testamentary.
“Dr. Mejido’s work across the globe embodies the multi-dimensional spirit of the center,” said Markuly. “He has deep experience in many cultural contexts of bridging the academic study of issues with on-the-ground social action and advocacy for the creation of more just and humane governmental policies.”