Rue, Victoria

Rue, Victoria

Lecturer AY-B, Humanities




Preferred: (408) 924-4722


  • Doctor of Philosophy, Theology, Graduate Theological Union, 1993
  • Master of Divinity, Union Theological Seminary, NYC,  1988


Victoria Rue, M.Div., Ph.D. is a Fulbright Scholar, university lecturer, a theatre writer/director, and a Roman Catholic woman priest. She lectures in Comparative Religious Studies and Creative Arts at San Jose State University.  In 2018/19, Dr. Rue was a Fulbright Scholar at Dar al-Kalima University of Arts and Culture in Bethlehem, Palestine. As her Fulbright project, she created and directed the play Maryam: A Woman of Bethlehem in collaboration with Hind Abu Shkhadim, translator and dramaturg.  The play subsequently toured Palestine in April 2019.

Dr. Rue’s M.Div. from Union Theological Seminary (NYC) and Ph.D. from the Graduate Theological Union (Berkeley) focused on how feminist theatre enacts feminist theology.  Her book Acting Religious: Theatre as Pedagogy in Religious Studies introduces teachers and students to embodied/enacted learning. She is a frequent pedagogy consultant to university departments and individual professors.

 As a playwright and director in the U.S., Victoria’s work has been seen in NYC, Los Angeles, and San Francisco.   She has been writing and directing plays for over thirty years. For ten years she was on the teaching faculty of the American Conservatory Theatre in San Francisco. Her work as a theatre director has been seen in Los Angeles at the Mark Taper Forum, San Francisco's American Conservatory Theatre, and New York's Shakespeare Festival, among other theatres. Among the plays that Dr. Rue has directed and collaborated on with others are: Paula (an adaptation of Isabel Allende's memoir), Grapes and Figs Are in Season: A Palestinian Woman's Story (developed with Emily Shihadeh), Ecstasy in the Everyday (developed with clown and mime Letita Bartlett), Positive Women (developed with HIV positive women), Convictions (developed with incarcerated women and men in a Los Angeles prison), Do You Read Me? (a play about literacy,developed with at risk high school students), CancerBodies: Women Speaking the Unspeakable (developed with women struggling with cancer). She was also the visiting guest director for San Khau Viet CALI, a Vietnamese theatre company in San Jose.

Her recent plays are InterFaith plays that create conversations and new understandings:  Women of the Exodus: Faithful Resistance in Jewish and Islamic Traditions, Temple Beth El, Santa Cruz 2017,  Mary/Maryam in Christian and Islamic Traditions, Peace United Church Santa Cruz 2016 and A Halaqa/Seder Exodus created with the Islamic Networks Group and the Jewish Federation of Silicon Valley also in 2016.  Most recently, the play Maryam: A Woman of Bethlehem was created and performed in Palestine, and is a verbatim play. This play will soon be produced in the U.S.

In 2005 Victoria was ordained a woman priest. She is featured in the film “Pink Smoke Over the Vatican.” There are presently nearly 200 women priests in the USA through the movement Roman Catholic Womenpriests. For more information:

Victoria’s spouse of twenty-nine years is Kathryn Poethig, M.Div., Ph.D. Both met while studying at Union Theological Seminary in NYC.  They live in Berkeley, California.