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I was quite blessed to be on sabbatical this past semester, engaging, reflecting and writing. My travels took me first to England, where I met with clergy gathering for the National Estate Churches Network to facilitate their annual conference, first in London and then in Yorkshire. The day’s topic was “Practical Spirituality.” After spending about…

Jesuit educational institutions are extraordinary places–mainly because of the people they attract, shape, and support. The following presentation is a collage of ideas and themes that can provide a fertile space for conversation with your colleagues as you probe together what it means to be part of Jesuit higher education.

The Christian mystical tradition offers us many practical resources for living today, not just as individuals but also as people who seek to live together in community, to collaborate in the work of making the world a better place. See below for an introductory vision of practical resources for living today.

Together we are more than what each of us, individually, can be.  Representatives of the world’s religious traditions collectively lit a candelabra reminding us of this truth.  As we face problems that often overwhelm us with their complexity, it is good to remember that we do not have to solve them alone.  We can seek…

Closing ceremony of the Inter-religious convocation on Peace, Assisi “Thirst for Peace: Religions and Cultures in Dialogue” Reflections by Gillian Ahlgren, Professor of Theology, Xavier University September 20, 2016 At precisely 2:00 pm, the security personnel began admitting participants with passes into the standing room of the upper and lower courtyards surrounding the Basilica of…

From the Lyrick Theatre in the valley outside Assisi Glass windows to my right provide a majestic view of the hillside city of Assisi.  The Rocca Maggiore towers above us, and the graceful arches of the basilica and monastery complex of San Francesco extend as a kind of bridge.  There are 5000 of us gathered…

I am sending this brief dispatch from here in Assisi, where I have come, along with thousands of others, for “Thirst for Peace,” an international meeting of religious leaders and faithful. 30 years after the gathering convened by John Paul II in 1986, we live in a very different world, yet one in which, as…

The Interior Castle by Teresa of Avila, tran. by Kieran Kavanaugh and Otilio Rodriguez (Paulist Press, 1979) My “Take and Read” came from the hands of a favorite professor, just after I had finished my first course in church history. “Gillian,” Grover Zinn said, placing a book in my hands, “you have to read this.”…

Creation and Communion in this Year of Misericordia: The invitation of Pope Francis

Gillian Ahlgren to speak at the Museo de Arte de las Americas (Organization of American States)