Theologian and artist to speak of her sense of the holy

Elizabeth Bettenhausen, social ethicist, theologian, photographer and poet, will discuss Bleeding Brain? That’s Life! at 4:30 p.m. Thursday, March 9, in Skelton Lounge, Chase Hall, 56 Campus Ave. She also will present a two-hour interactive workshop, Does Art Increase Justice in the World? at 4 p.m. Friday, March 10, in Hirasawa Lounge, Chase Hall.

These two presentations are offered in conjunction with an exhibit of Bettenhausen’s photographs and poetry, Healthy, Holy Illness in My Head, to be displayed from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Mondays through Fridays from March 1 through April 14 in the Bates College Chapel, College Street. The public is invited to attend all of these events free of charge.

In December 1993, Bettenhausen collapsed on a city sidewalk. Tests revealed three neuroaneurysms, all of which required immediate surgery. The collection of poems and photographs explores her experience with this “spiritual-political-social-physical” journey.

Bettenhausen has taught at the Adult Learning Program at Project Hope in Dorchester, Mass., the Harriet Baldwin Elementary School in Boston, the Women’s Theological Center in Boston, Boston University School of Theology, the Harvard Divinity School and the Hartford Seminary. She received her bachelor’s degree in English and a doctorate in ethics and literary criticism from the University of Iowa.

Sponsored by the Office of the Chaplain at Bates, the Spiritual Journeys lecture series features speakers from a variety of traditions who tell the stories of their spiritual awakening and development. Speakers are invited to explore how they experience a sense of the holy in their everyday lives, how their perspectives and disciplines have shaped that sacred experience and how they understand religion as a resource or an obstacle to the life of the soul. Speakers may also address the political and social consequences of their spirituality.

Next in the Spiritual Journeys series, Portland photojournalist Jim Daniels discusses Witnessing Spirit: A Photojournalist’s View at 4:30 p.m. Monday, March 27, in Skelton Lounge, Chase Hall.

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