Bates appoints new multifaith chaplain

The Rev. Brittany Longsdorf, currently a chaplain at Boston University, has been named the multifaith chaplain at Bates College, Associate Vice President and Chief Diversity Officer Crystal Williams announced Wednesday. Rev. Longsdorf’s first day at Bates is July 22.

Brittany Longsdorf (Photo courtesy of Boston University)

Brittany Longsdorf (Photo courtesy of Boston University)

“We are very excited to welcome Brittany to the Bates community,” Williams said. “She brings a deeply thoughtful approach and a dynamic vision to campus multifaith ministry, with keen enthusiasm for providing pastoral care for students, staff, and faculty. She combines strong intellectual and philosophical training with a commitment to social justice and an impressive record of developing innovative programming.”

“The multifaith chaplain position at Bates is an exciting, progressive, open-hearted ministry opportunity which inspires me,” said Longsdorf. “I was drawn to the position because of Bates’ rich history in inclusive spiritual formation, and the opportunity to make deeper, more personal connections between religious life and the student body.”

Bates’ Multifaith Chaplaincy offers interfaith resources and programs as well as service to the near and wider communities, with occasions for participants to reflect upon their engagement.

Longsdorf is an ordained minister of the Community of Christ church, a progressive peace church with interdenominational roots. Her appointment follows a national search that was overseen by a committee of students, faculty, and staff.

“The multifaith chaplain position at Bates is an exciting, progressive, open-hearted ministry opportunity which inspires me.”

At Boston University, Longsdorf has organized opportunities for students of different faiths to learn and grow from each other through dinners, teas, interfaith meditation, and multifaith scripture study. She has organized and hosted a variety of campus-wide multifaith events and retreats, and has met daily with students from a range of faiths for pastoral care and counseling.

Prior to BU, Longsdorf was a campus minister at Princeton University, where she ran the Princeton University Chapel during summers and where she also initiated programs catering to international students, women on the fringes of faith, devotional religious study, and interfaith dialogue.

Longsdorf holds a master’s of divinity from Princeton Theological Seminary and a bachelor of arts from Graceland University, where she graduated with high honors in religion and philosophy. She is currently completing a doctorate in ministry from Boston University.

Emily Wright-Magoon, who has served as the college’s acting multifaith chaplain since 2013, will return to her role as associate multifaith chaplain.

“With their creative leadership and complementary strengths Brittany and Emily will be able to expand the variety and reach of multifaith programs at Bates, continue to build on the extraordinary depth and vitality of the chaplaincy, and bolster an exciting vision for the future,” Williams said.

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