l-r: Susan O’Brien, Professor Nicholas Lash, Janet Lash at plaque unveiling
The Margaret Beaufort Institute of Theology in Cambridge, has named its library, the ‘Lash Library’, in recognition of all the generous support it has received from Cambridge based married couple, Professor Nicholas Lash and his wife Janet Lash since the college’s inception in 1993 and onwards.
At the official re-opening of the library at the start of Michaelmas term on 4 October, amidst a packed gathering of staff and students, past and present, Sr Bridget Tighe, former principal of the college, spoke warmly of how influential the couple had been in establishing the first Cambridge Catholic College specialising in women’s theological education.
Sr Bridget recalled the behind the scenes academic support and theological vision provided by Nicholas while he was the then Norris-Hulse Professor of Divinity at Cambridge University and the remarkable fundraising skills of Janet who acted as Chair of the college’s fundraising appeal which eventually enabled the Institute to buy its beautiful property from the Canonesses of St Augustine in 2003.
“Without the tenacity, know-how and endless generosity of the Lashes over the last two decades of the Institute’s growth, we wouldn’t be here today to be able to offer the transforming experiences for students in theological education and pastoral practice that the college is respected for today” said Sr Bridget. “Naming our library, the Lash library, is a small mark of our deep gratitude and esteem for all their efforts to get us to this point of our development” she said.
The couple unveiled the library plaque to much applause and Janet Lash responded with her own thanks and spoke of how her own and Professor Lash's support had always continued in the light of the story of Emmaus. She spoke of her pleasure of seeing this same story in the life of the Institute today: shared teaching and learning, breaking bread together and returning into the world to serve as disciples and witnesses to the Gospel.
For more information on the Margaret Beaufort Institute see: http://www.margaretbeaufort.cam.ac.uk/