Transforming Lives: Health Initiatives in Faith Communities has been published by Lexington Books and will soon be available. It is based on a casestudy with faith community nurses and health ministers in Omaha, Nebraska, and argues that they and their programs in faith communities have the potential to become significant partners with health systems and governments in providing health services to communities.
I was invited by the Society for Cross-Cultural Research to give a keynote address during its next annual meeting, which is held in Seattle from February 26 to February 29, 2020. The title of my address is Embedding Cross-Cultural Research: Driven by Values, Rooted in Relationships, and Focused on Action. In this address, I argue that when researcher adopt liberation theology's "accompaniment" as an overarching conceptual framework for their scholarly engagement with communities, they place themselves into the lives and struggles of communities and develop interpersonal and reciprocal relationships with them that result in knowledge that inspires transformative action. The abstract of my address as well as of the other keynote addresses are available online.
The Karenni community in Omaha prepared to celebrate its New Year Festival, Kay Htoe Boe, on May 9, 2020, on the Creighton University campus. Creighton University is honored to host the celebration and grateful to the Karenni to teach us about their history, identity, and cosmology. Unfortunately, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the festival had to be cancelled. We hope to join the Karenni community for this celebration in 2021! Dr. Eric Meyer's photos from the 2019 celebration can be viewed here.
Becky Davis, Margo Minnich, Jennifer Peter, and I have started to prepare our summer program in Austria and Hungary to be held from May 17 to May 29, 2021. The topic of the program is "Exploring Holistic Health - Implications for Care and Policy". Undergraduate, graduate and professional students will visit with us, among other sites, an eldercare facility and hospital, an emergency medical services center, the Psychology Department at Karoli Gaspar University, a refugee organization, an alternative healer in the shamanic tradition, the Hungarian Chamber of Health Professionals, an organ transplant ward, and a pilgrimage shrine. Also, we will spend a whole day in Bad Kreuzen at the First Center for Traditional European Medicine to learn about and experience complementary treatments, such as hydrology, wraps, and Celtic meditation.