Religious Life

“The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved.” – Jeremiah 8:20

Dear friends:

What a profound disappointment to learn that Princeton will be remote for the fall semester, and that we in the ORL won’t be able to see you soon.  We miss you.  We also miss each other – our staff has not been in each other’s presence since last March.  But the particularly stringent – and particularly successful – Covid response in New Jersey means that coming together on campus would have been simply untenable.

Our extended separation makes me reflect anew on the spiritual implications of this challenging time.  For those of us whose spiritual or religious communities involve a sense of divine agency, theistic or not, where are we now being led?  And how?  What new territory might we discover if we allow ourselves to follow?  Certainly there will be many practical changes to our shared life even after there is a vaccine.  But what does this also mean about how we value things and people and experiences?  About how we understand the sacred in our midst and in the unknowable?  About how we testify in the world to whatever are our beliefs?  What can we give up and what can we take on?  Shall we eventually exit this awful time only hoping to get back to “normal,” or shall we open ourselves to learning how to be, in some way, new creatures?

The summer is over and all of our hopes and expectations for a quick deliverance from Covid have proven futile.  We remain in a kind of captivity.  So how shall we live, now and after our liberation?  How do the teachings of our traditions instruct us?

From afar, we look forward to continuing this journey with you!


Murray Dodge Hall

COVID-19 Resources

Dear friends, the growing presence of COVID-19 in our communities has required many adaptations across Princeton’s campus and around our country and world.  
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