Nancy Lynne Westfield, Ph.D.

Nancy Lynne Westfield, Ph.D. became Director of the Wabash Center in January of 2020. As a womanist scholar of Religious Education and artist, her work focuses upon issues of pedagogy, epistemologies of hope, and justice. She incorporates into her writing and teaching the cultural and spiritual values taught to her by her southern, Christian parents and grandparents. Nancy’s first book was a children’s book entitled All Quite Beautiful: Living in a Multicultural Society. Her book entitled Dear Sisters: A Womanist Practice of Hospitality was written for a scholarly as well as church audience. Her books written in collaboration include: Being Black/Teaching Black: Politics and Pedagogy in Religious Studies and Black Church Studies: An Introduction.

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In the late 1980’s, the church I served had a large staff and a sanctuary worthy of rental for the filming of a professional TV Christmas special. On an otherwise humdrum day in March, word that Stevie Wonder was in the sanctuary spread like wild fire around the staff offices. ...

“Toto, we’re not in Kansas anymore.” So many of our students have a “Dorothy” experience when they enter theological and religious education. Our classrooms are not what they have had previous experience of. Our classrooms are not the local church, not Bible college, not the family reunion, not church ...

The power of affirmation lies in the acknowledgement of a job well done.  When colleagues applaud our success, we feel more a part of the enterprise, more connected, and more accepted. Being affirmed is being seen, noticed, made visible in erasing workplaces where so much of our work feels like ...

“Doc, if I teach what you are talking about I’ll get fired!” “Talking about this in seminary is fine, but if I try to talk about white supremacy on my job –won’t I get fired?” “If I talk about racism and oppression in my church-I’ll get fired.” ...

“Grab him!” they shouted. “And cage the big dope! Lasso his stomach with ten miles of rope! Tie the knots tight so he’ll never shake loose! Then dunk that dumb speck in the Beezle-Nut juice! Horton fought back with great vigor and vim But the Wickersham gang was too ...

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