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Donelle Poling

Donelle PolingDonelle Poling is one of twelve ministers of various denominations participating in the Fellows Program of the Collegeville Institute for Ecumenical and Cultural Research, located on the grounds of St. John’s Abbey in Collegeville, MN. She describe their work as follows: “We meet on a quarterly basis, engaging in round table discussions with leaders from the public sector regarding issues where faith and public policy intersect. Our purpose is strengthening our sense of civic leadership and affecting change in our communities and congregations that respect the dignity of all. Our group has examined issues with the criminal justice system, the achievement gap, health care, the state of the economy, and poverty and housing.”

Donelle shares that the Living School gave her “a sense of prophetic imagination grounded in unitive consciousness. My dreams of what a just society can and should look like are grounded in the belief that we are all connected; we are all one. Because of my two years at the Living School, I feel fervent in my role as a minister and servant leader. I am compelled to not stop at ‘picking up the pieces’ of the aftermath of violence, conflict, and the lack of dignity that is ever present in structures and policy-making that directly influence the people I serve. I am moved to actively seek out ways to affect change for structures that can promote a higher standard of justice—one with mercy, compassion and love.”

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