Catholic Spirituality: A Global Communion
Monday, April 11
Session Descriptions

Raised in Jerusalem: Latino Spirituality in the Next Generation

Dr. Lee, author of the prize-winning book Bearing the Weight of Salvation: The Soteriology of Ignacio Ellacuría, will offer his insights into the challenges faced, both in the Church and in society, by the younger generations of Latino Catholics.

Ecology & Interreligious Dialogue: Green Monasticism
This session brings together Donald Mitchell, Liam Heneghan and David Wellman, noted experts on both interreligious dialogue and environmental science, to explore the interface between the spirituality that derives from the contemplative life of monastic centers of learning and the pressing challenge in the world, and at DePaul, to promote environmental sustainability.

Sacred Hospitality
Theory and practice converge in this exciting session about the religious and theological dimensions of practices of hospitality in history and contemporary experience. The session is designed for students in DePaul’s new School of Hospitality Leadership and will examine how different Catholic religious orders and social movements (e.g., Benedict, Jesuit, and Vincentian) have promoted practices of hospitality as a form of discipleship and as a spiritual exercise. This theological reflection will also be directed to the practices of welcoming recent immigrants to Chicago and Melrose Park as well as to global practices of hospitality considered through their spiritual and ethical dimensions.

Evolution in the U.S.A. & Creation in the Catholic Theological Tradition
For decades, the "Theory of Evolution" has been an issue in American public life. Science curricula in public schools, textbook selection, the hiring and firing of teachers, as well as federal funding of some scientific projects and even presidential politics have all been caught up in the creationism controversy. Yet the Catholic intellectual tradition has not contested evolutionary theory.

In this workshop, Professors Scott Paeth and James Halstead will review the American debate around evolution and discuss that debate in relationship to the Catholic theological tradition's reflection on Divine Providence, creation/redemption, and theological anthropology.

Kerala Catholicism & the Global Communion
St. Thomas the Apostle traveled in 52 A.D. to the Kerala Province of southern India and planted a seed for future global growth. Today, the followers of this earliest of Christian missions number 3.8 million worldwide. They exist as a Church with its own East Syrian rite that stands in full communion with the Roman Catholic Church. As such, they have their own hierarchical and synodal structure and are a good of example of how Catholicism embodies the notion of being “ a Church of churches.” This discussion of the dynamic experience of Kerala Catholicism today will be undertaken by three Kerala youth who will share their experiences of participation in this global communion. Benita Antony will moderate the discussion. Jaisy Joseph will share the research she has undertaken at Harvard Divinity School, and Abin Kuriakose of the St. Thomas Syro-Malabar Catholic Diocese of Chicago will describe his leadership role during the summer of 2010 as a youth participant in the global synod in Kerala.

Memory, Memoir, and Meaning: Telling Our Sacred Stories
After a brief overview of the genre, meanings, and purposes of writing spiritual memoir, the three panelists in this session will engage participants in a discussion-based exploration of the what, why, and how of writing spiritual memoir. The session is intended to be exploratory and dialogical, so participants are encouraged to come prepared to discuss, brainstorm, and come away with some concrete ideas about how to begin writing their own spiritual memoir.

Our Lady of the World: Mary in the Global Communion of the Church
This session focuses on the role of the Virgin Mary within the global Catholic communion. Dr. O’Hara, a theologian and scientist, will present recent research he completed at The Catholic Theological Union in Chicago on the Marian profile of the Church. Fr. Sanchez will discuss the devotion to Our Lady of Guadalupe among Mexican American Catholics in Chicago and how this practice of faith creates a spiritual bridge between Catholic communities here and in Mexico.  

The Road to Canonization: The Spirituality & Life of Fr. Augustus Tolton         
Racism breaks down communion and makes it impossible to speak credibly about unity, either inside or outside of the Catholic communion. Fr. Augustus Tolton (1854-1897) endured racism by both Catholics and non-Catholics, created pastoral and advocacy structures to support Black Catholics, and lived a holy Christian life. For this reason, he is on the road to canonization. His cause was recently accepted by the Vatican, and Bishop Joseph Perry of the Archdiocese of Chicago has established a historical commission to aid in the preparation of the cause. Dr. C. Vanessa White, a leading Black Catholic theologian and head of the Augustus Tolton Scholarship Program at The Catholic Theological Union, will lead a discussion of Fr. Tolton’s life and courageous witness.