On August 18, Steve Sumerel leaves for a ten week sabbatical, a spiritual time of rest, renewal and study. While away, he will be studying Charles Darwin, John Innes and the other cast of characters who played out the early years of struggle between science and faith. Read more about Dr. Sumerel’s sabbatical plans in our August Connections Newsletter hereHere are a few highlights of his upcoming journey. 

“I will travel to Downe House where Darwin studied nature, and where he suffered chronic illness, keeping secret his theory of natural selection until pushed by friends to publish. I will visit St. Mary’s chapel, where Rev. Innes served and where he defended his friend from attacks by the Church. I will see letters written by Darwin and Innes and other important correspondence in collections at several locations, including London’s Natural History Museum, and Christ’s College, Cambridge and Oxford. I shall embark on this journey with profound appreciation to our church for giving me this once in a lifetime opportunity. As much as I am looking forward to the trip, the study, and the writing goals of my leave, I am equally looking forward to sharing with you and the whole congregation the learnings and the inspiration I know I will accumulate during my 10 weeks away.”

September 4-20:  Steve’s time in England; Downe, London, Cambridge, and Oxford

October 29: Steve’s first Sunday back.