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School of Theology and Ministry

Center for Religious Wisdom & World Affairs


Seattle University School of Theology and Ministry’s Center for Religious Wisdom & World Affairs is devoted to exploring the contributions religious wisdom makes in understanding and responding to major global issues. The Center brings together religious scholars from around the nation and world to research a pressing social problem, in dialogue with local religious leaders and other stakeholders, with the aim of unleashing smarter faith-based social action.  Every two years, the Center will focus on a specific social issue, such as, institutional racism, immigration or the unsustainable use of environmental resources. The Center is first focusing on the issue of homelessness.

The Center synthesizes three resources – civically engaged academic scholarship, faith-based action and theological education.  It seeks to help faith-based leaders and activists become more thoughtful in their social action; scholars to become more relevant in their research and attentive to practical application of their thought; and students to learn from this interchange and become smart and effective “public” theologians capable of presenting the wisdom of religious traditions to the broader community.

The Center’s innovative approach to creating synergies around research, social engagement and learning has already caught the attention of highly selective philanthropic organizations and private donors in the region and nationwide.

The Center for Religious Wisdom & World Affairs at Seattle University’s School of Theology and Ministry is devoted to exploring the contributions religious wisdom makes in understanding and responding to the world’s most pressing social problems. 

Religious scholars from around the nation and world, leaders and practitioners in the region will look for ways in which the resources of faith communities can lend assistance in the analysis, diagnosis and community responses to issues causing human suffering and injustice.

The Center synthesizes three resources – civically engaged academic scholarship, faith-based action and theological education reimagined. Its innovative approach to creating synergies around research, social engagement and learning has already caught the attention of highly selective philanthropic organizations and private donors in the region and nationwide. Join us on our journey as we dare forth into the future of faith in action.

Civically Engaged Academic Scholarship

The Center for Religious Wisdom & World Affairs integrates scholarly examination of pressing social issues with practical, solution-oriented responses initiated by faith communities and their organizations. In each cycle of study and action, the center gathers a global cohort of 10-15 theologians and scholars of religion from a variety of faith traditions and disciplines for an annual symposium at Seattle University to explore a particular social issue such as homelessness, poverty and inequalities, conflict and violence, migration and displacement and institutional racism. This cycle of study and action will help create a public theology grounded in interfaith dialogue that draws on the best thinking in major religious traditions and spiritualties, in regards to a particular year’s focus. 

Meet the Scholars

Faith-Based Action

Recognizing that now, more than ever, strong and unified religious voices are needed in public life, the Center for Religious Wisdom & World Affairs helps religious leaders gain the resources and tools they need to effectively address issues of social justice and the common good. The Center convenes an interfaith network of Puget Sound religious leaders that are committed to articulating interfaith positions around pressing social issues. By engaging with visiting scholars, this network will also ensure that Center research is aligned with the needs and interests of lived communities of faith.

Theological Education Reimagined

The Center for Religious Wisdom & World Affairs offers Seattle University and School of Theology and Ministry students an invaluable resource for cultivating their own vision for public theology in society. The Center cultivates the tools and language that spiritual or religious individuals can use in the private sector, civil society or government as they strive to contribute to the common good. Our graduates will enter their professional lives having seen and participated in dynamic religious social action in ways they can replicate in their own professional lines. 

Contact the Center

Manuel J. Mejido, Ph.D. | Director
School of Theology and Ministry, Seattle University
206-296-5330 | crwwa@seattleu.edu

Make A Gift

Maria Groen | Senior Director of Development
School of Theology and Ministry, Seattle University
206-296-6955 | groenm@seattleu.edu