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Trilogy of Plays

New Members of the Board of Visitors

BOV welcomes eight new members

Two new dramas by playwright Bryan Harnetiaux—“Dusk” and “Holding On, Letting Go,”—provide opportunities for families, healthcare professionals, and faith communities to confront the complexities of the end of life.

Photo by Les Todd,
Duke Photography

The new works complete the trilogy that Harnetiaux began with “Vesta,” which the Duke Institute on Care at the End of Life has made available since 2006 for education and outreach.

Through an exclusive licensing agreement with the playwright, ICEOL offers all three plays to community and educational groups at minimal cost. To learn more about the plays and how you can stage them in your community, contact Whitney Yadav at 919.660.3553.

“Vesta,” web resources: Dramatic Engagements and “Vesta is Everyone’s Story,” Spring 2008 DIVINITY.

Women’s Center turns 35

Students, alumni, and friends helped the Divinity School’s Women’s Center, created in 1974, celebrate 35 years of dialogue, community, and exploration of issues surrounding gender and ministry.

The celebration, held Nov. 12-13, 2009, honored Jill Raitt, the school’s first female faculty member, Missouri University Emerita Professor of Religious Studies, who currently holds The Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet Endowed Chair in Catholic Thought.

Keynote speaker was Teresa Berger, professor of liturgical studies, Yale Divinity School, and former Duke Divinity School professor of theology, who presented the lecture “Women’s Ways of Worship to Gender History: Re-Writing Liturgical Tradition.”

Learn more about the Women’s Center.

Alumni Award Honors Ritchie

B. Maurice Ritchie D’63,’64, who served for more than 20 years as the leader of the Divinity School’s Office of Field Education and Student Life, received the 2009 Distinguished Alumni Award at the annual Convocation & Pastors’ School. “From his obvious devotion to Christ and the church, to caring for ‘the least’ and his love of neighbor, Maurice exemplifies the qualities of what this award is all about,” said Sheila Cumbest, chair of the selection committee and former president of the Divinity School’s Alumni Association. “In Matthew’s Gospel we hear, ‘When you’ve done it to the least of these, you’ve done it unto me.’ Maurice lives into this.”


After studying economics at Davidson College, Ritchie entered Duke Divinity School in 1958. He spent two years on international scholarship in the Kirchliche Hochschule in Berlin, and then enrolled in the Heidelberg University theological department for one semester of study. He completed the B.D. in 1963 and the Th.M. the following year and was ordained an elder in the Western North Carolina Conference of the United Methodist Church.

Since his retirement in 2002, he has continued his work in ministry by joining Partners in Caring, a division of Pastoral Services of the Duke Medical Center. He has worked with programs to educate communities and clergy in several areas, including AIDS/HIV awareness, Resistance against Pressure for Teens, parish based CPE for Lumbee Indians and African American pastors, and a spiritual care training program for Native American pastors and lay leaders in Robeson County.

In his own neighborhood, Ritchie reaches out through the “Seniors Staying Put” ministry, which he helped found.

New Alumni Resources from Duke Libraries

Top 10

Favorite reasons to visit Divinity Library

Four new resources are available to alumni through the Divinity School Library:

  • ATLA Religion Database with full-text articles since 1924 and more than 1.6 million citations for articles, essays, and book reviews covering all aspects of religion and theology

  • EBSCO Academic Search Alumni Edition, which provides full text for more than 3,190 journals

  • JSTOR with full-text and page images of more than 1,000 leading scholarly journals in the humanities, sciences, and social sciences

  • ProQuest ABI/Inform Complete with 3,100 full-text titles covering business and economic conditions, corporate strategies, management techniques, as well as competitive and product information.

For access, use your Duke Alumni Directory login or register at the Duke Alumni Association. Once you have logged in, click on “Library Databases” (near the top of the page). Off-campus access is limited to personal, non-commercial use.

BSU Celebrates 40th Anniversary


Cynthia Hale D’79, founding pastor of the 5,100-member Ray of Hope Christian Church in Decatur, Ga., and Gregory Palmer D’79, resident bishop of the Illinois Episcopal Area (Illinois Great Rivers Annual Conference) of the United Methodist Church will help lead the Feb. 8-10 celebration of the 40th anniversary of the founding of the Divinity School’s Black Seminarians Union (BSU). Palmer also is president of the worldwide Council of Bishops of the United Methodist Church.

Online registration for the two-day event, which includes worship services, afternoon programs, a Tuesday evening reception, and a luncheon on Wednesday, is available.

Catch ‘The Next Generation’

Selected audio recordings and video interviews with speakers from “The Next Generation: Engaging the Christian Faith in a Global Context”— Duke Divinity School’s 2009 Convocation & Pastors’ School—are available online

Interviews with Kenda Creasy Dean, Os Guinness, and Tafadzwa Mudambanuki are available at Faith & Leadership, the online magazine of Leadership Education at Duke Divinity.