Springfield Dominican Sister Mila Díaz Solano successfully defended her dissertation and was subsequently awarded a Doctorate in Sacred Scripture, summa cum laude, from the French School of Biblical and Archeological Research, Jerusalem.
Her defense took place March 24 via video conference from Springfield with examiners located at the school in Jerusalem, a prestigious 125-year old institute sponsored by the French province of Dominican Friars.
“It has been a long journey that was accomplished with the support and prayers of many people, my sisters and friends from around the world,” Sister Mila said.
The title of her thesis is Nehemiah, the Yehudites and their Enemies: Characters in the Making.” A Diachronic Study of 2 Esd 11-12; 14-17:5 // Neh 1-2; 3:33-7:5.
Joining in the Zoom call to offer moral support and encouragement were some of Sister Mila’s friends from near and far, including Springfield Dominican Sisters in the United States and in her native Peru.
She was encouraged by the members of the examination board to have her dissertation published and to continue her academic work of research, publication, and teaching. She hopes to work on the publication of her dissertation and to search for teaching opportunities.
Sister Mila was elected in 2019 to a 5-year term of service on the general counsel for the Springfield Dominicans. Prior to that she taught scripture at ISET, a graduate school of theology in Lima, and ministered at Instituto Bartolomé de las Casas, a Christian human development organization founded by Dominican theologian Gustavo Gutiérrez, and at Mundelein Seminary in the United States.
She enjoys teaching and has continued to share her knowledge of scripture with students in the United States and Peru through workshops and online courses.
To her Dominican Sisters Sister Mila wrote, “I offer the fruits of my contemplation and research to you,” echoing the words of St. Thomas Aquinas who wrote Contemplare et contemplata aliis tradere. Translated from the Latin, the phrase says the purpose of study is to contemplate and share the fruits of contemplation with others.
The Dominican Sisters of Springfield are part of a worldwide Dominican family, the Order of Preachers. For more than 800 years, Dominicans have preached the Gospel in word and deed. The Springfield Dominicans were established in Jacksonville, Illinois, in 1873 and relocated to Springfield in 1893. Today, thousands of Dominican sisters, nuns, priests, brothers, associates, and laity minister in more than 100 countries around the world.