Reverend Sunya Pratt: The Life and Legacy of an Early American Buddhist in Tacoma
Third Thursday, January 17, 6:30-8:00 PM
FREE and open to the public
Join Associate Director of the UW Tacoma Library Justin Wadland to discuss this little-known story of service, immigration, and cultural exchange.
On April 23, 1936, Reverend Sunya Pratt was ordained as a minister at the Tacoma Buddhist Temple. Local and national newspapers described the ceremony, calling Rev. Pratt the “First White Buddhist Priestess,” a label that later scholars have called into question. Yet at a time when few Westerners converted to Buddhism, let alone became teachers, Rev. Pratt joined a sangha--or spiritual community--of Japanese Americans. Over the next 50 years, she became an important leader for Jodo Shinshu Buddhists in the Puget Sound region. This talk will share a research project that explores the legacy of Rev. Pratt within the context of the history of Tacoma and American Buddhism.
Third Thursdays offer free admission to the museum from 3:00-8:00 PM. See the exhibitions and hear this terrific talk too!