The Transylvania Times -

The Empathy Project: Gunderson To Present 'Living Across Boundaries'


July 6, 2017

Rev. Dr. Gary Gunderson of Baptist Hospital in Winston-Salem will speak on “Living Across Boundaries” at Transylvania County Library’s Rogow Room in Brevard on July 11 at 6:30 p.m. The event is sponsored by the Empathy Project. It is free and open to the public.

The Empathy Project is a group of local citizens focused on the ability of all residents of Transylvania County to communicate and cooperate despite differences. To date, the group has organized community conversations in Rosman and Brevard to encourage citizens to better understand each other and come together to address community needs.

Members of the Empathy Project are planning the July 11 event to be dynamic and interactive. Starting at 6:15 p.m., snacks and non-alcoholic beverages will be served. Rev. Gunderson will be introduced at 6:30. After his presentation, there will be a generous period of time for dialogue. In the second half of the evening, there will be in-depth conversations in smaller groups before adjourning at 8:30. Information about the Empathy Project will be distributed during the evening.

A public health journal recently published an article by Dr. Gunderson and four co-authors. The title is “Crafting Richer Public Health Messages for a Turbulent Political Environment.” The article draws on “moral foundations theory” to suggest that messages related to community health will reach a broader audience if they appeal to values that can bridge political and other differences.

Dr. Gunderson is head of spiritual care services in the Baptist Medical System. He oversees six departments: CareNet Counseling, Chaplaincy and Clinical Ministries, FaithHealth Education, Community Engagement, the Center for Congregational Health, and FaithHealthNC. He also keeps Baptist Hospital connected to 4,300 Baptist congregations throughout North Carolina. Gunderson is a graduate of Wake Forest University and earned theological degrees from Emory University and ITC in Georgia.

For further information, contact Rob Field at or (828) 577-8168


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