Henri Nouwen Society

Message from the Executive Director

Karen PascalDear Friends,

When I wrote to you last spring, I told you that the Henri Nouwen Society would be significantly expanding its work in order to invite more people to step into their true identities as beloved children of God. Little did I know how encouraging and generous your response would be.

I am so grateful how you have partnered with us to help extend the legacy and the impact of Henri Nouwen around the world.

What an exciting and challenging time it has been for us all. Here are some of the exciting initiatives in which we are presently involved:

  • On November 14th, we launched the First Annual Henri Nouwen Lecture at the University of Toronto’s Convocation Hall. Jim Wallis – Founder and CEO of Sojourners, delivered the inaugural address titled “The Spirituality of Social Justice”, rooted in Henri Nouwen’s advocacy for the poor and marginalized. CBC’s IDEAS, CONTEXT and the Salt & Light network are multiplying the impact by airing interviews and programming around the event. We are grateful to Citizens for Public Justice, International Justice Mission, L’Arche Daybreak, Seeds of Hope Foundation and W.P. Scott Foundation for joining with us to help make this evening a success.
  • The first book of Nouwen letters “Yours Henri” is being edited by Gabrielle Earnshaw, our Chief Archivist. It will be available in September 2016!
  • We have a fabulous new look. We’ve refreshed our brand and developed a new website that offers better access to Nouwen content and is suitable for all platforms. Be sure to visit often to enjoy Henri’s Daily Meditations, to keep up with Nouwen-related news and events, to participate in discussions, and to interact with others.
  • We are engaging more and more people through special events, social media and online seminars. This fall and winter, Henry Freeman, a former student and a close friend of Henri Nouwen’s, is hosting a series of webinars that build on Nouwen’s ground-breaking work A Spirituality of Fundraising.
  • We are delighted to announce that we have lined up the second lecture at University of Toronto on May 13, 2016. Popular writer and columnist Anne Lamott will speak on “Henri and me”.  This event will also feature singer-songwriter Steve Bell.

In September of 2016, it will be twenty years since Henri Nouwen’s death. To celebrate his life and legacy, we are planning some exciting events throughout the year.

From June 9-11, 2016, we will be presenting an international conference at the University of Toronto’s beautiful Mississauga campus. The Way of the Heart: Exploring the Inner Journey through the Lens of Henri Nouwen brings together a host of excellent speakers including Fr. Ron Rolheiser, Ester de Waal, Shane Claiborne, Sue Mosteller, David Haas, Michelle O’Rourke, Wayne Muller, Robert Jonas, Michael Christensen, Carol Berry and many more. Acclaimed singer/songwriter Steve Bell will perform throughout the conference.

Plan to stay at one of the many lovely student residential units we have reserved for the event. What a great way to begin your summer!

One of the most important projects we have on our agenda for this next year is to create a workshop for caregivers. No one speaks more eloquently and profoundly on the spirituality of caregiving than Henri Nouwen. We hope to launch this project in 2016 and make it available to cities and communities across North America.

Yes, we have a lot we want to do! We are full of hope and vision knowing that, through his books, Henri Nouwen still speaks deeply into lives. Almost daily, we hear from individuals who are so appreciative for the unique and powerful way his words touch their hearts. Henri longed to be fruitful and it is evident that he continues to be, even in his death.

“Henri, your legacy is exceptional!”  – Facebook comment

The Henri Nouwen Society exists so that others can experience the unconditional love of God that Henri discovered in his life. I am truly grateful to you for helping us extend Henri’s outreach and legacy.

With gratitude,

Karen Pascal

By clicking submit you are agreeing to share your story on the 'Stories from Readers' page. Thank you!