The Cardinal Newman Lecture

Cardinal Newman Lecture Photo


The Cardinal Newman Lecture Series is named after the great 19th century English prelate who wrote very movingly about his intellectual journey toward Roman Catholicism in his spiritual autobiography, Apologia pro vita sua (1864). Newman's work helped later generations of Catholics and Catholic converts map out ways to understand the datum of religious faith in light of the contemporary issues facing modern life.

Honoring this engagement with the Catholic tradition, CCIH will invite scholars each spring to recount their own discovery (or rediscovery) of the Catholic intellectual heritage in light of their ongoing scholarship.

The 2015 Cardinal Newman Lecture: Dr. Colby Dickinson

Cardinal Newman Lecture 2015 - Colby Dickinson

Tuesday, 10 February 2015
McCormick Lounge, Coffey Hall
Lake Shore Campus, LUC

The 2015 Cardinal Newman Lecture
Dr. Colby Dickinson

Life in Dialogue with Faith: The Subtle Complexities of an Ongoing Conversion

How is life capable of being lived in continuous conversation with faith if not as a constant conversion experience? Indeed, how are we even capable of recognizing a complex and subtly developed faith in the modern world without it undermining our established sense of self? As a convert to Catholicism, Prof. Colby Dickinson has often reflected on these questions insofar as they also illuminate new ways to think and do theological practice. Turning back directly to Cardinal Newman's Apologia, this talk will engage Newman's conversion to Catholicism, Prof. Dickinson's own experiences of conversion, and how the life lived in faith is itself a never-ending process of conversion.

Mr. Gregory Wolfe

The 2013/14 Cardinal Newman Lecture Series: Gregory Wolfe

Thursday, 20 February 2014

4th Floor, Klarchek Information Commons
Lake Shore Campus, LUC

All are welcome to attend!

For its second Cardinal Newman Lecture this spring, the Hank Center invites writer, teacher, publisher, and editor Gregory Wolfe to speak about his journey of faith in the Catholic Church:

In my Cardinal Newman Lecture I'll be reflecting on the changing face of Catholic literature from the twentieth century to the present—and how that body of writing has shaped my life and vocation, including my work as editor of the literary journal Image. My conversion to the Catholic Church while a graduate student at Oxford University was profoundly influenced by writers such as Flannery O'Connor, Georges Bernanos, Graham Greene, Evelyn Waugh, and Walker Percy—all Catholic novelists. These writers shared O'Connor's belief that "for the hard of hearing you have to shout"—in other words, that the Christian writer in a secular age needs to use bold, dramatic gestures to help people sense what religious faith is like. But the succeeding generations of Catholic writers—those writing late in the previous century and up to the present moment, I discovered, were more inclined to "whispers" than to "shouts." I'll speak about the contention made by some critics who have argued that this is simply evidence of a lack of strong Catholic identity and conviction, and I'll attempt to show that this is an unhelpful simplification. This topic has surfaced recently as I've found myself publishing responses to essays by Paul Elie and Dana Gioia, two leading contemporary Catholic writers—both of whom favor a "narrative of decline" when evaluating the state of Catholic letters. The more I've been involved in editing Image, the less inclined I am to embrace a narrative of decline. I believe that there is, in fact, a host of gifted Catholic writers at work today, so I will conclude my talk by asking why thinkers like Elie and Gioia sense decline. In part, my belief is that the problem lies with the relentless politicization of discourse in Catholic periodicals and intellectual forums, and I'll close by suggesting some ways to help kick-start the critical discussion—so that writers and critics can create a healthier literary ecosystem.

—Gregory Wolfe
Editor of the journal Image
Seattle Pacific University

New Lecture Series

On February 12, Dr. James Garbarino presented CCIH’s first Cardinal Newman Lecture. Dr. Garbarino, the Maude C. Clarke Chair of Humanistic Psychology at Loyola University Chicago, recounted his intellectual rediscovery of Catholic Social Thought within the context of his own work on the human rights of children. Video of the lecture: The (re-)Discovery of Catholic Social Theory in Understanding Trauma, Violence, and the Human Rights of Children.

Event details:

Tuesday, February 12
4:00 p.m.–5:30 p.m.
Loyola University Chicago
Information Commons, 4th floor