Eileen D. Crowley
M.A., University of Notre Dame; Ph.D., Union Theological Seminary
Dr. Eileen Crowley speaks and teaches on communication skills for ministry; body language in worship; the sacraments of initiation and reconciliation; lay leadership of prayer and preaching; shaping places for worship through liturgical art and church architecture; Christian patterns of daily communal prayer; and the liturgies of and preaching during Holy Week. Within her teaching she encourages students to incorporate in their projects a variety of visual and performing arts, including photography, video, music, and multimedia installation art.
Crowley is author of A Moving Word: Media Art in Worship (Augsburg, 2006); Liturgical Art for a Media Culture (Liturgical Press, 2007); Testing the Fruits: Aesthestics as Applied to Liturgical Media Art (UTS dissertation, 2002), as well as of essays on worship, theology, and the arts. A liturgist and an award-winning media producer, Dr. Crowley brings her unique background, skills, and perspective on these topics to classes, lectures, and workshops that she presents locally, regionally, and nationally. For liturgical churches, she is the leading advocate of a new way of thinking about media in worship, that is, as locally, communally produced liturgical media art, rather than as presentation technology or purchased audiovisual support.
Her recent essays include “Media Art in Worship 101,” a 3-part series for Envision Church online magazine. She served as guest editor for Liturgy 23:3 (July-September 2008) that focused on issues related to media in worship and contributed three articles: “Media in Worship: It’s Not What You May Imagine”; “Of Devices, Focal Practices, and Mystery”; and “Portrait of a Liturgical Media Artist.”
In the 1990s, she was scriptwriter, interviewer, and producer of eight video documentaries on Roman Catholic worship for Liturgy Training Publications, including This is the Night: A Parish Welcomes New Catholics, an award-winning documentary on the Rites of Christian Initiation that has been used in Catholic and Protestant theological education and liturgical formation and training settings around the world. She also wrote and produced for Liturgy Training Publications: Infant Baptism; the five-part Sunday Mass Video Series; and The Hardest Job: Leading a Parish to Live from its Liturgies. In addition, she wrote and produced two series on liturgy for the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America: These Things Matter: Word, Baptism and Communion and God is Here.
In 2007-2008, she served as artist-in-residence for a Chicago ELCA church, where she guided members of every age, including children, in their creation of media art for their Easter Vigil readings.
A Roman Catholic, Dr. Crowley enjoys working ecumenically. She has also conducted research on Reform Jewish worship. She is a member and has been an officer of the ecumenical, inter-faith North American Academy of Liturgy. She also belongs to the Catholic Academy of Liturgy, the Society for the Arts in Religious and Theological Studies, the Notre Dame Center for Pastoral Liturgy Network, the American Academy of Religion, the Catholic Theological Society of America, and the Association of Practical Theologians.