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Dean search seeks community input on religious and spiritual life

By Kim Urquhart | Emory Report | Nov. 13, 2013

As the search begins for Emory's next dean of the chapel and religious life, the campus community is invited to share their thoughts about the vision, work and future of religious and spiritual life at Emory.  

An open forum is set for Monday, Nov. 18, from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. in Cannon Chapel's Brooks Commons.  

The Rev. Susan Henry-Crowe, who has served Emory as dean of the chapel and religious life for more than 22 years, is leaving in February 2014 for an international leadership position with the United Methodist Church. Henry-Crowe will serve as general secretary of the General Board of Church and Society, leading its role as the church's social justice advocate and overseeing personnel and programming in the board's office in Washington, D.C.    

The search advisory committee, appointed by President James Wagner and chaired by Vice President and Deputy to the President Gary Hauk, has been holding conversations with various constituencies across campus whose work is connected to the Office of Religious Life. The listening sessions are designed to help identify the community's vision for religious and spiritual life at Emory and the characteristics the Emory community considers important in selecting a new dean of the chapel.    

"Emory has built a distinctive profile in the way it ministers to the community and in its openness to questions about religion and the human spirit," says Hauk. "At the same time, the University has changed significantly since the role of Emory University chaplain was first defined more than 40 years ago.  

"The dean of the chapel must help clarify and respond to emerging contours of religion and spirituality at a world-class research university that has both a church affiliation and remarkably constructive multifaith presence and interfaith dynamics."  

A tribute concert to honor Henry-Crowe is set for Jan. 19, 2014. Look for more details on this and related events in future editions of Emory Report.