Greater Westfield Chamber of Commerce

Westfield State University to host Interfaith Campus Ministry Summit

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: December 23, 2019
CONTACT: Troy Watkins,, 413.572.5523

Soul Shop Workshop on Suicide Awareness and Prevention

Westfield – The Albert and Amelia Ferst Interfaith Center is collaborating with the Diocese of Springfield’s Campus Outreach and the Chaplains’ Council of Westfield State University to host the Center’s second annual Interfaith Campus Ministry Summit on Wednesday, January 9, 2020. The day-long event will be held in the campus’ Ely Hall.

The January 9 event follows the Center’s inaugural Interfaith Summit held in spring 2019. The “Soul Shop Workshop on Suicide Awareness and Prevention” aims to equip faith communities to minister to people impacted by suicidal desperation including those either engaged in or recovered from suicidal thinking, individuals concerned about someone who may be suicidal, or those who have lost someone to suicide.

Designed for clergy, campus ministers, chaplains, advisors, and youth leaders, the all-day training will provide inspirational and practical tools to help guide individuals impacted by suicidal desperation.

Father Warren Savage, the director of the Ferst Interfaith Center, stressed the Summit’s timeliness and relevance, given that suicide is the second-leading cause of death among 15 to 34-year-olds and the tenth leading cause of death for all ages in the United States.

The January 9 event will take place from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. A $23 registration fee includes lunch. Parking will be available on campus. To register, visit

The Interfaith Albert and Amelia Ferst Interfaith Center first opened in 1982, following the work of community leaders who formed the Westfield State Foundation. The Foundation has since supported the Center and its founding mission to continue to welcome all.

Founded in 1839 by Horace Mann, Westfield State University is an education leader committed to providing every generation of students with a learning experience built on its founding principle as the first public co-educational college in America to offer an education without barrier to race, gender or economic status. This spirit of innovative thinking and social responsibility is forged in a curriculum of liberal arts and professional studies that creates a vital community of engaged learners who become confident, capable individuals prepared for leadership and service to society.

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