Dr. Kate Bowler Offers Sylvester Lecture

June 7, 2022

Over 600 faculty, staff, students, and friends joined us for our February lecture with Dr. Kate Bowler, entitled "No Cure for Being Human: Resilient Faith for Tough Times." Dr. Bowler's lecture was a part of our Sylvester Spirituality Series, generously supported by the Sylvester family.  

 Dr. Bowler is an author, podcast host, and associate professor of the history of Christianity in North America at Duke University. After being unexpectedly diagnosed with Stage IV cancer at age 35, she wrote the New York Times best-selling memoir, Everything Happens for a Reason (and Other Lies I've Loved), which tells the story of her struggle to understand the American belief that all tragedies are tests of character. Her most recent book, No Cure for Being Human: And Other Truths I Need to Hear, has also reached the New York Times Bestseller list and highlights Dr. Bowler’s continued struggle with her faith and her ambition in light of her cancer diagnosis.

In light of COVID and the many tragedies we have moved through as a community in the past several years, Dr. Bowler’s lecture offered us a richer understanding of hope in the face of uncertainty, despair, and suffering. She invited us to understand that “life is a chronic condition and there is no cure for being human” and she called us to a collective acknowledgement of our beauty and brokenness as humans.

Following the lecture, graduating senior Ally Osterberg interviewed Dr. Bowler, asking questions collected by both in-person and virtual attendees of the event. It was an evening of rich reflection and meaningful conversation, and we are grateful for the generosity of the Sylvester family that makes this lecture series possible. Stay tuned for news about next year’s speaker!