The Woodstock Theological Center was an independent, Jesuit-sponsored research institute located at Georgetown University that carried out theological and ethical reflection on the most pressing human issues of the day. Drawing on the Roman Catholic tradition, the Woodstock Center was ecumenically open, multi-disciplinary, and collaborative with, among others, the business community, government, religious groups, universities, other research centers, and the media.
The Jesuit Provincials of Maryland, New York, and New England, along with the other members of the Board of Trustees of Woodstock Theological Center, have decided to discontinue Woodstock’s activities as an independent ministry. A process of lengthy discernment and assessment of the enormous transformations and human and material resources of the Society of Jesus in the U.S. has led to this decision with great reluctance. In Fr. General Adolfo Nicolas, S.J.,’s De Statu Statement at the 2012 Jesuit Congregation of Procurators in Nairobi, he reminded us that the most important challenge facing us as we look to the future of our mission is that of “refining our discernment.” It is impossible to “make our service deep, fully in harmony with our vocation, our spirit, and the demands of professional work in today’s world… without a delicate but firm discernment that determines what we can do reasonably well today with the resources and numbers that we have.”
This free-standing theological institute was founded in 1973 to stimulate creative theological thinking about critical issues facing the human family, society, and the Church. In the past forty years, Woodstock has contributed significantly to the rich heritage of Jesuit theological inquiry in service to the Church and the world. While Woodstock’s formal, independent ministry will come to an end, its rich legacy will continue in those it has trained; in the research, publications, and theological forums that have advanced our understanding of the role of faith in public life; and in the resources that will now strengthen existing theological enterprises.
Gasper F. LoBiondo, S.J., Director of the Woodstock Theological Center since 2002, observed that, “while Woodstock’s formal, independent ministry will come to an end, its rich legacy will continue to serve in the context of the research, publications, and theological forums that have advanced the church’s understanding of the role of faith in public life. All who have been associated with Woodstock Theological Center over its forty years of service can be proud of what they have accomplished, and should be encouraged by the knowledge that the work they have done will not come to an end because the value of such work will be embraced by other institutions in new forms.”
Please contact Leon Hooper, S.J. at the Woodstock Theological Library if you want information about Woodstock. Please make use of the following information if you want to reach the fellows or access our archives and rich store of multimedia resources:
Ilia Delio, OSF, is now the Director of Catholic Studies at Georgetown University, http://catholicstudies.georgetown.edu/, and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Catholic Studies program will also administer the Woodstock Figge Fellowship program for undergraduates.
John Fontana will continue to manage the Aruppe Program for Business Ethics and the Woodstock Business Conference. He can be reached at email@example.com.
Rev. Raymond Kemp will be working in the President’s Office continuing his Faith in the City program. His email is firstname.lastname@example.org.
John Haughey, S.J. will be continuing his current research and writing at the St. Claude La Colombiere Jesuit Community. He can be reached at: email@example.com.
Thomas Reese, S.J., is now working at the National Catholic Reporter as Senior Analyst. His new email at the National Catholic Reporter is: treese@NCRonline.org
Thomas Michel, S.J., will teach theology at the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service in Qatar. His email is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Gasper LoBiondo, S.J., will move on to become the Superior of the Jesuit community at Gonzaga College High School in Washington, D.C., and can be contacted at email@example.com. His new contact information is:
Leon Hooper, S.J., will continue to manage the Woodstock Theological Library at Georgetown University and administer the archives of the Woodstock Theological Center. His email is firstname.lastname@example.org. We hope you will visit our archival website at http://woodstock.georgetown.edu/library/. Woodstock’s multimedia work will still be available https://vimeo.com/woodstockcenter. If you want to continue following Woodstock’s type of theological reflection see America Magazine, Jesuit National Weekly, or check the websites of the Jesuit School of Theology and Ministry at Boston College and the Jesuit School of Theology at Santa Clara University.
Thank you for your interest in the Woodstock Theological Center.