Kathleen Norris

Kathleen Norris
Best-selling Poet, Writer and Author


Sunday, June 5, 1:30 p.m.

Kathleen Norris

Kathleen Norris is an award-winning poet, writer, and author of The New York Times bestsellers The Cloister Walk, Dakota: A Spiritual Geography, Amazing Grace: A Vocabulary of Faith, The Virgin of Bennington, and Acedia & Me: A Marriage, Monks, and a Writer's Life, as well as seven books of poetry.  Exploring the spiritual life, her work is at once intimate and historical, rich in poetry and meditations, brimming with exasperation and reverence, deeply grounded in both nature and spirit, sometimes funny and often provocative.

In her most read and loved book, Amazing Grace, she sheds light on the very difficult theological concepts such as grace, repentance, dogma and faith. Her intention is to tell stories about these religious concepts by grounding them in the world in which we live.

Widowed in 2003, Kathleen Norris resides in Hawaii. She travels to the mainland regularly to speak to students, medical professionals, social workers and chaplains at colleges and universities, as well as churches and teaching hospitals.


Initiated in 2014, this annual lecture is presented in honor of Bishop Joseph M. Sullivan, who worked throughout his life to bring about healing for all people, especially the most vulnerable. The retired auxiliary bishop of Brooklyn, N.Y., died in June of 2013.

During his long career in ministry, Bishop Sullivan led Catholic Charities of Brooklyn and Queens, and from the early days of the AIDS epidemic, he continued to call for better care and services for persons living with HIV and AIDS. His concern for suffering people across the globe was evident in his ten years of service with Catholic Medical Mission Board. He was passionately committed to access to quality health care for all people.

Bishop Sullivan served on the Board of Trustees of CHA beginning in 1984, and he chaired the board in 1990-1991. From 2000 to 2008, he was episcopal liaison to CHA from the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. At the time of his death, Bishop Sullivan was a member of the board of Mercy health system (Chesterfield, Mo.), which he chaired from 2004 to 2007.

With warmth, wit and expansive knowledge, this man of deep faith was a lifelong champion for his sisters and brothers in need.