"[I hope] that it will give a faith to live by to all future generations of Smith students, whatever their religious beliefs or creeds."
—Helen Hills Hills, remarking at the dedication of the Chapel where the Office of Religiou and Spiritual Life resides
A Message from the Dean
The Office of Religious and Spiritual life at the Helen Hills Hills Chapel of Smith College is a center of diverse cultural and religious learning and expression, spiritual development, hospitality and community engagement. We aim to increase student knowledge and engagement with intersections of religion and world affairs and to provide support and guidance to students as they wrestle with questions of meaning, faith and purpose.
Religion matters. Conflicts over religious differences inflame domestic politics, reinforce international disagreements over resources and boundaries and influence social policy. The United States is the most diverse nation on earth, yet we are also—collectively—relatively illiterate about world religions, even if it is the religion of our next-door neighbor.
Faith and spirituality matter, too. For most of human history, religious teaching, experience, ritual and faith have given language and shape to the human condition and our common questions. In the words of the poet Mary Oliver, "what will you do with your one wild and precious life?"
Our program in religious life and community service extends the academic mission of the college outside the classroom to promote student inquiry and religious learning, spiritual growth, interfaith cooperation and service to and with others.
Over a dozen student religious organizations cultivate interfaith understanding and cooperation. Together we strive to foster a dynamic and engaged community which can wrestle with the most difficult questions and issues.
We hope you'll visit with us while you're on campus.
Jennifer L. Walters