Richard Garnett
University of Notre Dame Law School

"Positive Secularism:
Understanding the Separation of Church and State"

February 4, 2011 
Minor Hall Auditorium / UVA / 5:30 PM

The St. Anselm Institute continued its tenth year anniversary celebration by welcoming constitutional law scholar Richard Garnett to Mr. Jefferson's University.  Prof. Garnett is widely recognized for his expertise on a variety of topics, including the constitutional freedoms of religion, speech and association. He currently serves as Associate  Dean and Professor of Law at the University of Notre Dame. He also directs Notre Dame Law School’s new interdisciplinary Program in Church, State, and Society. His forthcoming book, Two There Are: Understanding the Separation of Church and State, will be published by Cambridge University Press. 
Third-Year UVA Law student April Russo, President of the UVA St. Thomas More Society, a cosponsor of this lecture, very ably introduced Prof. Garnett and reminded the audience that the University's Law School first resided on Grounds in Minor Hall, the fitting University location selected for this evening's public lecture. A capacity crowd filled the Auditorium to listen to Garnett's development of the idea of "positive secularism" as a

George Weigel

"The Life and Legacy of Pope John Paul II"

Friday / November 19, 2010 / 5:30pm
Univ. of Virginia / Minor Hall Auditorium

George Weigel--NBC Vatican analyst, New York Times bestselling author, and John Paul II biographer-- delivered a public lecture at the University of Virginia on his long awaited sequel The End and the Beginning: Pope John Paul II, The Victory of Freedom, and the Last Years, the Legacy (Doubleday).  More than ten years in the making, this book tells the dramatic story of Pope John Paul II's heroic battles with communism in light of recently disclosed classified documents and brings to a conclusion Weigel's landmark portrait of the man who led the Catholic Church and changed the course of world history.

Miklos Veto
Professor Emeritus Université de Poitiers

"Approaches to God in the Philosophy of Jean Luc Marion"

Tuesday, October 19, 2010, 7:30pm
Nau Hall 342 (New South Lawn)

Co-sponsored by: The Department of Religious Studies,
he St. Anselm Institute for Catholic Thought, and The Office of International Programs

Before the new South Lawn buildings at the University of Virginia even received their official dedications, their value was on full display on October 19 when visiting French philosopher Miklos Veto cheerfully shepherded a standing room only gathering of faculty, graduate and undergraduate students, and local community members through the complex yet celebrated philosophical-theological writings of French philosopher Jean Luc Marion. Following the great theological turn in French phenomenology, Marion aspires, according to Veto, to bring philosophical clarity to our thinking about God's existence and essence. Rather than constraining God's essence merely to the idea of Being--an idea that necessarily self declares and affirms its own limits--Marion reveals how the sacrificial giving and emptying qualities of Love necessarily realize a transcendent fullness beyond itself. Hence, thinking about God as both Love and beyond Being liberates us to understand God as beyond the categories of human thought, even beyond the deepest and most profound phenomenological category of Being.


Associate Professor of Theology, Loyola University-Maryland

"Jesuit on the Roof of the World:

Ippolito Desideri's Mission to Tibet"

Thursday, Oct. 7, 2010 

ON THURSDAY OCTOBER 7, the St. Anselm Institute for Catholic Thought opened its 10th Annual Public Lecture Series at University of Virginia when it joined many others in welcoming back Trent Pomplun, a UVA Religious Studies graduate who presently is Loyola University-Maryland Associate Professor of Theology. 

Prof. Pomplun is author of the widely acclaimed Jesuit on the Roof of the World (Oxford). His public lecture recounted the trials, adventures, and fascinating cultural and philosophical encounters of Jesuit missionary priest Ippolito Desideri. Fr. Desideri left Rome in 1712, spent a year on a ship circumnavigating the globe, and eventually landed in Goa, a port city in western India. He traveled northward and then

Robert Louis Wilken
"Catholicism and Culture"

Thursday / March 25, 2010
UVA / Minor Hall Auditorium / 5:00-7:00pm

On the Feast of the Annunciation, the faculty and friends of the St. Anselm Institute for Catholic Thought welcomed back Robert Louis Wilken by inaugurating the annual Robert Louis Wilken Lecture in honor of his dedicated service to and leadership of the St. Anselm Institute since its founding in 2000.

A Winter's Evening Concert 

Leo Nestor, Conductor
William Atwood, Organ

February 18, 2011 / 7:30pm
St. Paul's Memorial Church, 1700 University Ave.

The thunderous and prolonged applause at the end of this spectacular evening of music was the only indicator needed for how much the audience appreciated what they just had been given. Led by Dr. Leo Nestor, Justine Bayard Ward Professor of Music and Director of the Sacred Music Institute, the Catholic University of America Chamber Choir performed works of William Byrd, Thomas Tallis, Herbert Howells, Edward Elgar and several other composers. Organist William Atwood accompanied the choir on several songs, including an impressionable rendition of George Handel's With Thunder Arm'd. The Choir concluded with Leo Nestor's This is the Hour of Banquet and Song, which included these memorable lyrics:
This is the hour of banquet and of song;
This is the heavenly table for us spread;
Here let us feast and, feasting, still prolong
The fellowship of living wine and bread.   
The St. Anselm Institute for Catholic Thought, the University of Virginia McIntire Department of Music, the Alonzo McDonald Foundation, and the Our Sunday Visitor Institute were cosponsors of this free concert, which was graciously hosted at St. Paul's Memorial Church, located at 1700 University Avenue. 

Elizabeth Schiltz
University of St. Thomas Law School

"Taking Complementarity Seriously:
A Catholic Approach to Gender Differences,
Feminism, and Public Policy"

FRIDAY, APRIL 9, 2010 (4:00pm)
University of Virginia / Monroe Hall, Room 110

University of St. Thomas Law Professor Elizabeth Schiltz engaged and encouraged her standing room only crowd to consider how the Catholic tradition offers numerous resources for developing a new and bolder feminism that  promotes an integral, rather than fractional, understanding of gender complementarity.  Inspired by Pope John Paul II's 1988 apostolic letter "On the Dignity and Vocation of Women" and the works of others--from St. Edith Stein to the recent scholarly works of Sr. Prudence Allen--Schiltz confidently contended that feminists from a faith tradition like Catholicism, which takes embodiment seriously, must necessarily be more active participants in discussions of gender identity.  

Paul Mariani
Boston College

"The Life and Poetry of
Gerard Manley Hopkins, S.J."

October 22, 2009 / Minor Hall / University of Virginia/ 5:00pm


"Sometimes a Lantern moves along the night
That interests our eyes."
-- GMH, SJ

On Thursday evening (Oct. 22), the St. Anselm Institute warmly embraced and welcomed Boston College Professor Paul Mariani to the University of Virginia.  Prof. Mariani is a widely acclaimed and prolific authority on British and American poetry and literature, including his sixteenth and latest book: Gerard Manley Hopkins, A Life (Viking, 2008). 

Brendan McAnerney, O.P.
Dominican School of Philosophy and Theology, Graduate Theological Union

"Holy Icons - Holy Churches"

 Minor Hall / University of Virginia
WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMEBER 30, 2009, 7:00-8:30pm 

"In the study of revealed truth East and West have used different methods and approaches in understanding and confessing divine things.  It is hardly surprising, then, if sometimes one tradition has come nearer to a full appreciation of some aspects of a mystery of revelation than the other, or has expressed them better.  In such cases, these various theological formulations are often to be considered complementary rather than conflicting" (Second Vatican Ecumencal Council)*.

Fr. Brendan McAnerney, O.P.--a Dominican priest with additional priestly faculties in the Melkite Greek Catholic Church --visited the University of Virginia on September 30-October 1, 2009.  Trained as an artist and art historian in the Byzantine tradition, with a deep reservoir of experiences as  a Dominican, former gallery employee and director, and in his present position leading DominICON Ministry in Sacramento,  Fr. Brendan exposed his UVA audiences to the theology, history, grammar and techniques that comprise the holy art of icons, from its origins in the Eastern Roman Empire through its development in the Eastern Catholic and Orthodox Churches.

    Icons, Fr. Brendan made clear, are not created by artists as immediate forms of self-expression or commodities for self-promotion.

“In Search of the Historical Francis of Assisi”

October 8, 2008 5:30 pm
Minor Hall Auditorium / University of Virginia

Directions To Lecture
Our 2008-09 Public Lecture series at the University of Virginia began on October 8.  Fr. Augustine Thompson, O.P., Professor of Religious Studies and History and a faculty member of the UVA Medieval Studies Program, treated the large audience in attendance to the most luminous fruits of his sabbatical research on the historical Francis of Assisi, which he completed in Italy this past year.

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