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Saving sacred manuscripts subject of Thursday lecture

April 16, 2013

The efforts of a Minnesota library to digitize and preserve unique manuscripts in Syria, Ethiopia, Turkey, Iraq, and other regions where the survival of historical materials is threatened will be the topic of a lecture at Beloit College tomorrow (Thursday, April 18).

Frequently, the manuscripts the Hill Museum and Manuscript Library preserve belong to endangered minority Christian populations in those regions, and the digitized copies represent the first and only access that Western scholars have had to these ancient and often unique texts.

Fr. Columba Stewart, (pictured below) director of the Hill Museum and Manuscript Library in Collegeville, Minn., will deliver a lecture on this work in “Saving the Sacred: Preserving Historic Manuscripts.” The event, which is free and open to the public, will take place at 4:15 p.m. in Richardson Auditorium, Morse-Ingersoll Hall.

Columba, speaker 

 “The library’s work is valuable both for increasing our historical knowledge of these regions and their religious communities and for fostering cultural connections between Eastern and Western branches of Christianity,” saya Ellen Joyce, associate professor of history at Beloit.

Fr. Columba Stewart has been featured in National Geographic, PBS and The Chronicle of Higher Education, among other publications.

The Beloit College history department is sponsoring the event.