The event, entitled If You Want to Be Happy. Be Grateful: The Life and Teachings of Brother David Steindl-Rast, featured two exhibits highlighting the collection, as well as a speaking program…
After many months spent collecting and cataloging dozens of “linear feet” of personal papers and objects, the Special Collections and University Archives (SCUA) at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst opened the archives of Brother David Steindl-Rast at the W.E.B. DuBois Library on October 1st, 2017. A Network for Grateful Living was represented by staff, Board members and many, generous friends from near and far. The event, entitled If You Want to Be Happy. Be Grateful: The Life and Teachings of Brother David Steindl-Rast, featured two exhibits highlighting the collection, as well as a speaking program which touched on the historical importance of Br. David’s work, and efforts to digitize the collection, making it accessible for study in perpetuity.
Two exhibits were on hand in the Library, one with many items from Br. David’s childhood through young adult life:
Another exhibit about his activism and interfaith work was in an area where students could stroll by and take a look:
A program about the archive collection was held in the recently renovated Old Chapel. People learned about the collection from presentations by Simon Neame, Dean of Libraries; Rob Cox, Head of Special Collections; and Aaron Rubinstein, University & Digital Archivist. Kristi Nelson, Executive Director of A Network for Grateful Living (ANGL) read an email message of thanks from Br. David and introduced colleague, Margaret Wakeley, who gave a slideshow chronicling Br. David’s early life. Anthony Chavez, ANGL Board member and former travel companion of Br. David, entertained the crowd with pictures and stories of eight years of their travels together around the globe.
See the entire presentation here (1:04:50)
A reception followed, where Friends of the Library and old friends of Br. David and people interested in his life and work mingled and conversed with SCUA staff and staff and board members from A Network for Grateful Living and perused recently-published books by Br. David.
What an honor and privilege it is to have these archives housed at UMass, treated with such skill and care. The goal of SCUA is to soon have the entire collection digitized and available to scholars, researchers, and all those interested in, and inspired by, the life and teachings of Br. David.
Watch the whole presentation here (1:04:50)
(English subtitles are available for this video if you click on the “gear” icon or CC to turn them on)
To learn more about the collection, see Brother David Steindl-Rast: Preserving A Legacy of Social Change and visit The Special Collections and University Archives site.
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So happy to see this tribute to Brother David. I hope someday to visit the collection at Amherst.
Please do let us know if you come to this area to see the collection. Some of our Network for Grateful Living staff are nearby and would be so happy to meet you at the Archives and take you on a tour!