Irish Reverend Serves as Guest Lecturer
On Monday, February 25, the Irish Studies Program hosted a guest lecture by Reverend Bill Shaw, OBE, Director of the 174 Trust, Belfast, Northern Ireland. He presented, “Building Peace and Reconciliation in Northern Ireland: A Personal Perspective.”
Shaw, a Presbyterian minister from North Belfast, Northern Ireland, grew up in the Loyalist (Protestant) area of that city. He graduated from Queen's University in Belfast and became a minister in 1989, during the time of "the Troubles," when violence between Catholics and Protestants was constant. He became the director of the 174 Trust, a non-denominational community-based organization in one of the most divided and disadvantaged areas of North Belfast. Situated in the middle of "Murder Mile," where more than 20% of all murders related to the Troubles occurred, the Trust is committed to building peace and promoting reconciliation in what continues to be a divided—and at times violent—society.
His lecture was co-sponsored by the Irish Studies Program, the William and Helen Cavanaugh Chair of Catholic Studies, the Ethics minor, and the International Studies Program.