The Andover Newton Board of Trustees voted unanimously to create the school's first tenure track faculty position in Interfaith Studies and named Dr. Jennifer Howe Peace as the incumbent.
For the past five years, Peace has served Andover Newton as an instructor in the area of Interfaith Studies and a key program designer and leader for the Center for Interreligious and Communal Leadership Education (CIRCLE) at Andover Newton and Hebrew College's Rabbinical School. The inception of the position was made possible in large part through a grant from the Henry R. Luce Foundation.
Discerning the future interfaith studies at the school, Andover Newton's faculty recognized that competent interfaith religious leadership is crucial to the future not just of faith communities but of peace in our world. The faculty voted to not only sustain her current work but increase the school's commitment both to her and to her position.
Peace earned her B.A. from Connecticut College, her M.A.T.S. from Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary, and her Ph.D. in Cultural and Historical Studies of Religion from the Graduate Theological Union in 2005. Her dissertation was entitled 'Sound Rituals: A Comparative Study of Chanting and Communal Identity in a Hindu Temple and a Christian Abbey.'
At Andover Newton, Peace has taught courses on interfaith studies, Christian spirituality, and early Christian History. She has demonstrated particular gifts for teaching online, where she has created community among students spread far and wide.
Her most recent book, My Neighbor's Faith: Stories of Interreligious Encounter, Growth, and Transformation, is a collection of essays on interfaith engagement co-edited with Or Rose and Gregory Mobley.