The Seattle School of Theology & Psychology will welcome Dr. Shelly Rambo, a constructive theologian and author of Spirit and Trauma: A Theology of Remaining, for the third annual Stanley Grenz Lecture Series on November 2 and 3.
The Stanley Grenz Lecture Series is offered every year at The Seattle School in honor of former Professor Stanley Grenz, a prolific Christian scholar with a pastoral heart and deep intellectual presence. “Stan wrestled with ethical and theological questions, intentionally mindful of how Christian communal life engages a dramatically shifting world,” says Dr. Derek McNeil, Senior Vice President of Academics. “In his honor, this series invites scholarly theological discourse into the public forum, as an expression of Christian faith and service.”
The free, two-part event will focus on “Resurrection Wounds,” Dr. Rambo’s understanding of trauma and healing that goes far beyond the traditional ideas of redemptive suffering. Lived trauma challenges those traditional narratives, and for many, the experiences of suffering and faith become entangled in complex and sometimes harmful ways. The more we learn about the reality of trauma and its aftereffects, the more it becomes clear that we need new ideas, new language, and new methods. Practitioners working between the fields of psychology and theology are uniquely positioned to contribute to that reframing.
In her first conversation at The Seattle School, 10 a.m. on Monday, November 2, Dr. Rambo will speak on Wounds Surfacing and then converse with Dr. Brian Bantum (Associate Professor of Theology at Seattle Pacific University), Dr. Francesca Nuzzolese (Associate Professor of Spiritual Formation and Pastoral Care at Palmer Theological Seminary), and Dr. Linda Wagener (Cofounder and Senior Partner at Marigold Associates). On Tuesday, November 3 at 11:30 a.m., you are invited to bring a lunch for Dr. Rambo’s discussion on Wounds Resurrecting, which will include open-form audience interaction.
“Dr. Rambo’s work is widely studied and discussed at The Seattle School, and we are thrilled to welcome her for two days of dialogue and education,” says Dr. McNeil. “It will be a wonderful opportunity to examine theological and psychological understandings of suffering and witness as they relate to the healing of trauma.”
Shelly Rambo’s research, creativity, and insight into the intersection of theology and trauma have been adding to conversation and education at The Seattle School for years. Using a liturgical understanding of the Easter Triduum—Good Friday, Holy Saturday, and Resurrection Sunday—as a frame, she explores what it might mean for the Spirit of God to witness to divine love in the very depths of human suffering. We believe this perspective is crucial if we—as therapists, pastors, artists, and, primarily, Christians—hope to engage the effects of trauma in a holistic manner.
“Dr. Rambo is a rare combination of a poetic soul and someone who speaks very deeply about theology,” says Dr. Chelle Stearns, Associate Professor of Theology. “She’s able to take the human soul and God’s love for the world and hold it in both hands.”
Both events are free and open to the public, but registration is required. Learn more and register here.
And if you’d like to explore these topics further prior to the event, check out this conversation in The Other Journal between Dr. Stearns and Dr. Rambo.