(December 2, 2008)

Contact: Rick DelaHaya, Centenary News Services, 318.869.5073

Centenary Celebrates the Life of Trappist Monk Wednesday, Dec. 10

Thomas Merton
Thomas Merton

SHREVEPORT, La.—Centenary College's Religious Studies Department and Christian Leadership Center, in partnership with Shreveport's All Souls Unitarian Universalist Church, will present "Thomas Merton: An Interfaith Celebration of His Life" Wednesday, Dec. 10, in the Kilpatrick Auditorium, located in the Smith Building on the Centenary campus.

The program commemorates the 40th anniversary of Merton's death. Dr. Peter Huff, T. L. James Associate Professor of Religious Studies, calls the event "a multi-faith tribute to the enduring relevance of Merton's spiritual legacy."

The program begins with a brown-bag luncheon discussion on "Mindfulness Meditation and Centering Prayer" from 11:30 a.m. until 1 p.m. and features local meditation teachers Larry Androes, Alan Prater, and Ben Riggs.

The program continues later that evening with a 7 p.m. showing of Morgan Atkinson's documentary film "Soul Searching: The Journey of Thomas Merton," followed by a panel discussion led by Dr. Huff and members of the area interfaith community: Buddy Landry, Deshae Lott, and Sr. Anna Grace Madden.

Author of the classic autobiography The Seven Storey Mountain, Trappist monk Thomas Merton (1915-1968) inaugurated a contemplative revival in international Christianity and sparked a revolution in Christian attitudes toward materialism, racism, and war. A pioneer in interfaith dialogue, he died in Bangkok, Thailand, on a pilgrimage through Asia.

The program is free and open to the public. For more information contact Dr. Huff at 318.869.5049 or email.

About Centenary College of Louisiana

Centenary College is a private, four-year arts and sciences college affiliated with the United Methodist Church. Founded in 1825, it is the oldest chartered liberal arts college west of the Mississippi River and is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. Centenary is one of 16 colleges and universities constituting the Associated Colleges of the South and is regularly rated as one of the top colleges in the South. In 2008 Centenary College celebrates 100 years in Shreveport and Bossier City.