Current Year

The 2017 Nevola Symposium on Spirituality and Health will be held Tuesday, June 13, again at Colby College in Waterville.

Our theme and focus this year is Pathways to Joy.

“Joy” is a common-language word that most of us use to describe transitory emotional states.  But is it possible that joy may take on qualities of a trait, and become an enduring and persistent part of people’s lives?  If this is possible, it has profoundly important implications for those of us who are in healing professions, for all of our efforts at caring about other people, and for our own personal resilience and well-being.

Some of the questions that we will explore are:

  • What is Joy?
  • How is it different from happiness?
  • How does it arise, and how may we invite or encourage joy in ourselves and in other people?
  • What do we know about the science of joy?
  • What are the spiritual underpinnings of joy?
  • Can we experience joy in the midst of challenging times and suffering?
  • Can we experience joy when we see other people suffering?

Our keynote presenter will be Lisa Miller, PhD.  Dr. Miller is a professor of psychology and education in the clinical psychology program at Teachers College, Columbia University with a joint appointment at Columbia Medical School.  She is the founder of the Spirituality Mind Body Institute, a graduate training program in a foundational spiritual psychology.  SMBI draws on psychology, global spiritual traditions and science towards preparing students for spiritually guided service, healing, teaching and activism.  She is also a faculty member at the program in Theology of Joy and the Good Life at the Yale Center for Faith and Culture.

Dr. Miller is the co-editor-in-chief and co-founder of the APA journal, Spirituality in Clinical Practice and the editor of the Oxford University Press Handbook of Psychology and Spirituality.  She also has a particular interest in developmental approaches to well-being, as reflected in her 2016 book, The Spiritual Child: The New Science on Parenting for Health and Lifelong Thriving.

In addition, nine great breakout sessions will complement Dr. Miller’s presentations.   They are:

  • Growing Community: Beyond Individual Constraints.  Christopher Meyer, MD, MBA
  • Exploring Times and Places of Sanctuary.  Marguerite Stapleton
  • Joy in the Workplace:  More than just getting the job done.  Tom Bartol, NP
  • Open-heartedness Is the Teacher, Dancing with Joy Is the Lesson.  David C. Weiss, ThM, PhD
  • Capturing Joy in Poetry.  Jim Mello, LADC/CCS MA in Theology
  • Laughter Yoga.  Persis Hope, FNP
  • Joyful Dances of Peace from Different Spiritual Traditions.  Elaine G. McGillicuddy, MA
  • Living Juicy – Filled with the Fruit of the Spirit – JOY!  Lynn Durham, RN
  • Abracadabra – The Power in Making Joy.  The Rev. James A. Weathersby, MDiv, BCC and Valerie A. Clemons, MD

Click on this link for an electronic copy of the brochure: Nevola 2017 brochure. This will give you additional information about the day.  You can print the brochure and fill out and return the registration form to register.  For those of you who are on our mailing lists, paper copies of the brochure will be sent out around the end of April.

We hope to see you there!

Best regards,


Frederic C. Craigie, Jr., PhD
Psychologist/Consulting Faculty, Maine-Dartmouth Family Medicine Residency
Visiting Associate Professor, Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine, University of Arizona College of Medicine
Associate Professor of Community and Family Medicine, Giesel School of Medicine at Dartmouth

[updated 3-23-2017]