The Philosophy and Religion department hosts three endowed lectures per year, which brings in leading scholars in the disciplines of philosophy and religion from around the country. The Smith-Willson lecture focuses on issues of religious education. The Beck lecture focuses on the relationship between science and religion. And the Parkhurst Lecture focuses on contemporary issues in biblical studies. Past lecturers include Dr. Sandra Richter of Wheaton College, Rev. Adam Hamilton of the Church of the Resurrection in Kansas City, and Dr. Tony Jones, well known Christian author and blogger.


2023-2024 Guest Lecture

Dr. Christopher FoxDr. Christopher Fox
Tuesday, October 10, 2023 | 4 p.m. | Messenger Recital Hall

"But You're Not a 'Real' Musician! (or Thinker)": Thought and Play between Philosophy and Music

Christopher Fox (PhD, University of Memphis) is Professor of Philosophy at Newman University in Wichita, Kansas. He grew up in the Seattle music scene of the 1980s and 1990s, recording with the band Bitter End and, later, in Memphis with The Also. He has toured with former Queensryche vocalist Geoff Tate and continues to play bass when he can.

2023-2024 Parkhurst Lecture

Dr. David CunninghamDr. David Cunningham
January 24, 2024 | 5 p.m. | Richardson Performing Arts Center


David S. Cunningham (PhD, Duke University) is Director of the Network for Vocation in Undergraduate Education (NetVUE), Council of Independent Colleges. He is Professor of Religion at Hope College in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he also served as Director of the CrossRoads Project. He is the author of five books and editor of four collections on various topics in religion, ethics, and higher education.

2023-2024 Smith-Willson Lecture

Dr. Megan CraigDr. Megan Craig
February 8, 2024 | 4 p.m. | Messenger Recital Hall


Megan Craig (PhD, The New School for Social Research) is an artist and Associate Professor of Philosophy and Art at Stony Brook University in New York. At Stony Brook, she teaches courses in aesthetics, ethics, French phenomenology, psychoanalysis, and American philosophy. Craig is the author of Levinas and James: Toward a Pragmatic Phenomenology (Indiana University Press, 2010). Craig is also the graphic designer for Firehouse 12 Records.

2023-2024 Beck Lecture

Dr. Terra RoweDr. Terra Rowe
March 7, 2024 | 4 p.m. | Messenger Recital Hall


Terra Rowe (PhD, Drew University) is Assistant Professor at the University of North Texas in Denton, Texas. She is the author of Toward a Better Worldliness: Ecology, Economy, and the Protestant Tradition (Fortress Press, 2017) and Of Modern Extraction: Experiments in Critical Petro-Theology (T & T Clark, 2002). For the Beck Lecture, she will present the argument and research of her most recent book on the relationship between oil and religion.

2023-2024 Founders Lecture

Dr. Jackson LashierDr. Jackson Lashier
April 19 24, 2024 | 3 p.m. | Messenger Recital Hall


Jackson Lashier (PhD, Marquette University) is Associate Professor of Religion and Director of Discipleship at Southwestern College. Beloved by all at Southwestern College, Dr. Lashier teaches Introduction to Church History, Introduction to the Bible, Introduction to Biblical Interpretation, Introduction to Christian Theology, Comparative Religions, and Greek 1 and 2. He is the author of Irenaeus on the Trinity (Brill, 2014) and Great Cloud of Witnesses: How the Dead Make a Living Church (Fortress Press, 2023). For this academic year, the Social Science Hall of Fame Lecture also provides the SC community an opportunity to celebrate the publication of Dr. Lashier’s most recent book. Copies will be available for purchase and for the author’s signature.


2022-2023 Guest Lecture

John SymonsJohn Symons
Thursday, October 27, 2022 | 4 p.m. | Richardson Performing Arts Center

AI’s Love? Chatbots, Social Agency, and Close Personal Relationships

John Symons is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Kansas. He mostly works on problems related to the role of computing technology in science and public policy, and he is especially interested in the interaction of technology and social norms. He is the author or co-author of four books: Cyber-Social Ethics: A Philosophical Inquiry, co-authored with  Ramón Alvarado, (Routledge Press, 2022); Formal Reasoning: A Guide to Critical Thinking, (Kendall Hunt Press, 2017); Daniel Dennett: Critical Assessments of Leading Philosophers, (Routledge Press, 2014); and On Dennett, (Wadsworth Press, 2002).

2022-2023 Smith-Willson Lecture

Karen GuthDr. Karen Guth
Wednesday, November 16, 2022 | 5 p.m. | Messenger Recital Hall

The Ethics of Tainted Legacies

Karen V. Guth is an associate professor of Religious Studies and is affiliated with the Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies and the Peace and Conflict Studies programs at the College of the Holy Cross. She is the author of Christian Ethics at the Boundary: Feminism and Theologies of Public Life (Fortress Press, 2015) and The Ethics of Tainted Legacies: Human Flourishing after Traumatic Pasts (Cambridge University Press, 2022). She holds a PhD in religious ethics from the University of Virginia, an M.T.S. in Religion and Society from Harvard, and an M.Th. in Literature, Theology, and the Arts from the University of Glasgow. She received her B.A. in religion from Furman University. Before coming to Holy Cross, Professor Guth was a postdoctoral fellow in Religious Practices and Practical Theology at Emory University (2011-2012) and an assistant professor at St. Catherine University in St. Paul, MN (2012-2016).

2022-2023 Parkhurst Lecture

D. Stephen LongDr. D. Stephen Long
Thursday, February 2, 2023 | 4 p.m. | Messenger Recital Hall

The Epistles of John and a Perfectionist Ethics: F. D. Maurice’s Christian Socialist Legacy

D. Stephen Long is Cary M. Maguire University Professor of Ethics at Southern Methodist University. Previously he worked at Marquette University, Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, St. Joseph’s University and Duke Divinity School. He received his PhD from Duke University, and is an ordained United Methodist Minister who served churches in Honduras and North Carolina. He works in the intersection between theology and ethics and has published over fifty essays and fourteen books on theology and ethics including Divine Economy: Theology and the Market (Routledge, 2000), The Goodness of God: Theology, Church and Social Order (Brazos Press, 2001), John Wesley’s Moral Theology: The Quest for God and Goodness (Kingswood, 2005), Calculated Futures (Baylor, 2007), Christian Ethics: A Very Short Introduction (Oxford, 2010), Saving Karl Barth: Hans Urs von Balthasar’s Preoccupation (Fortress Press, 2014), and The Perfectly Simple Triune God: Aquinas and His Legacy (Fortress Press, 2016).

2022-2023 Beck Lecture

Beatrice MarovichBeatrice Marovich
Wednesday, March 1, 2023 | 5 p.m. | Messenger Recital Hall

Sister Death: Living and Dying according to Philosophy, Religion, & Science

Beatrice Marovich is a writer & academic who teaches in the Department of Theological Studies at Hanover College. Her research and writing is ecologically and speculatively oriented. She writes and thinks about living, dying, and dreaming, in an animal body. Sister Death: Political Theologies for Living and Dying, (Columbia University Press, 2023) is her first book.

2021-2022 Smith-Willson Lecture

Dr. Sam BrodyDr. Sam Brody
Wednesday, April 20, 2022 | 4 p.m. | Wroten Hall

The Pyramid or the Campfire? Moses and Monotheism in Martin Buber and Sigmund Freud

Samuel Hayim Brody studied political and social thought and Middle-Eastern studies at the University of Virginia before turning his attention to the study of traditional Jewish sources at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, where he received his master of arts degree. His Ph.D. in the History of Judaism is from the University of Chicago Divinity School, where he focused on the modern German-Jewish intellectual tradition while also studying philosophical hermeneutics, Christian exegesis, and varying conceptions of the relationship between religion and politics. He has previously taught at the University of Chicago and the University of Cincinnati. He is the author of the award-winning book, “Martin Buber's Theopolitics” (Indiana University Press, 2018).

2021-2022 Parkhurst Lecture

Rev. Dr. John DruryRev. Dr. John Drury
Wednesday, March 30, 2022 | 5:00 p.m. | Deets Library

The Divine Economy of Glory in the Gospel of John

Rev. Dr. Drury serves as the Spiritual Engagement Director at Indiana Wesleyan University. Prior to this post, he taught theology at Wesleyan Seminary for 12 years. He holds a Ph.D. in systematic theology from Princeton University and an MDiv from Princeton Theological Seminary.

2020-2021 Smith-Willson Lecture

Dr. Brad Elliott StoneDr. Brad Elliott Stone
Tuesday, November 10, 2020 | 4:00 p.m. | Richardson Performing Arts Center

The Possibility of a Post-Polemical Politics: A Post-Election Postmortem

Are you feeling election blues? Or post-election blues? Are you wondering what the 2020 election means for the future of the country? If so, please plan to attend this year's Smith-Willson Lecture on Tuesday, November 10, at 4:00 p.m. in RPAC. Professor of Philosophy at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, Dr. Brad Elliott Stone will deliver a lecture entitled "The Possibility of a Post-Polemical Politics: A Post-Election Postmortem."

Dr. Stone is the co-author of Introducing Prophetic Pragmatism: A Dialogue on Hope, the Philosophy of Race, and the Spiritual Blues, (Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2019), and he is a frequent guest lecturer at Southwestern College.

This event is open to the first 100 faculty, students, and staff who arrive. Please wear your masks and maintain social distancing. There will be a Q & A following the lecture, and everyone is encouraged to keep their masks throughout the session. 

2019-2020 Parkhurst Lecture

Dr. Elaine Noguerira-GodseyDr. Elaine Nogueira-Godsey
Tuesday, February 25 | 4:00 p.m. | Wroten Hall

Women’s Participation in Food Justice: Developing Transnational Solidarity

Dr. Elaine Nogueira-Godsey is an assistant professor of theology, ecology and race at the Methodist Theological School in Ohio. She holds BA in Theology from Faculdade Teológica D’Oeste do Brasil and an MA and PhD in Religious Studies from the University of Cape Town in South Africa. Her research focuses on the development of ecological ethics and decolonial methods of research in relation to the study of religion and ecofeminist theology. Her forthcoming published works include “Towards a Decological Pedagogy” and “Tangible Actions Toward Solidarity: An Ecofeminist Analysis of Women's Participation in Food Justice." She is a board member of the International Society for the Study of Religion, Nature and Culture and an assistant editor for the Journal for the Study of Religion, Nature and Culture.

2019-2020 Beck Lecture

Dr. Laura HartmanDr. Laura Hartman
Thursday, October 17, 2019 | 4:00 p.m. | Wroten Hall

Ethics and Ecological Restoration

Dr. Laura Hartman, Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies at Roanoke College, specializes in researching consumption, climate, restoration, transportation - all with lenses of ethics, gender, and religion.  She has published two books with Oxford University Press: That All May Flourish: Comparative Religious Environmental Ethics and The Christian Consumer: Living Faithfully in a Fragile World.

2019-2020 Smith-Willson Lecture

Dr. David DaultDr. David Dault
Friday, October 25, 2019 | 4:00 p.m. | Messenger Recital Hall

What healthy theological dialogue looks like as podcasts become more mainstream

Dr. David Dault has a PhD in religion from Vanderbilt, and a masters degree from Columbia Theological Seminary.  He is the host and executive producer of Things Not Seen, an independent radio show and podcast that features in-depth interviews with nationally recognized guests. Each week, they welcome authors, musicians, politicians, filmmakers, and more. The show is available nationally to NPR stations through PRX - the Public Radio Exchange. The podcast of the show is available on iTunes, Stitcher, and Soundcloud. Since 2012, the show has been downloaded over 150,000 times.

2018-2019 Beck Lecture

Dr. Susan CastroDr. Susan Castro
Tuesday, April 2 (International Autism Day) | 4:00 p.m. | Wroten Hall

How to Treat Humanity: Autism and Moral Imagination

Dr. Susan Castro, Associate Professor of Philosophy, Wichita State University, specializes in Immanuel Kant’s peculiar moral imperative to act as if your maxim were to become, by your will, a universal law of nature--which she applies to questions concerning autism, human imagination, and natural science. While her research centers on Kant scholarship, it is also informed by current methods and trends in the natural sciences with an eye toward broad interdisciplinary connections. Currently, she is working on a book using Kant’s lectures on logic and other antecedent resources to better understand how to establish a metaphysics of morals as a non-empirical science. Castro regularly teaches classes on Late Modern Philosophy, Metaethics, Ethical Theory, Philosophy of Law, Philosophy of Feminism, Philosophy of the Arts, and Business Ethics. She is faculty co-sponsor of the WSU Philosophy Society, a student organization for anyone interested in philosophy.

2018-2019 Smith-Willson Lecture

Dr. Serene JonesDr. Serene Jones
Thursday, January 24 | 4:00 p.m. | Messenger Recital Hall

What Is Truth?

A highly respected scholar and public intellectual, the Rev. Dr. Serene Jones is the 16th President of the historic Union Theological Seminary in the City of New York. The first woman to head the 182-year-old institution, Jones occupies the Johnston Family Chair for Religion and Democracy. She is a Past President of the American Academy of Religion, which annually hosts the world’s largest gathering of scholars of religion. Jones came to Union after seventeen years at Yale University, where she was the Titus Street Professor of Theology at the Divinity School, and Chair of the University’s Program in Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies. The author of several books including Trauma and Grace, Jones, a popular public speaker, is sought by media to comment on major issues impacting society because of her deep grounding in theology, politics, women’s studies, economics, race studies, history, and ethics.  Learn more

2018-2019 Parkhurst Lecture

Rev. Andrew ThompsonRev. Andrew Thompson, ThD
Wednesday, October 24 | 4:00 p.m. | Wroten Hall

Walking in the Ways of God

Andrew Thompson is one of the leading scholars of Methodist history and Wesleyan Theology in the country. He holds a Bachelor of Arts from Hendrix College, a Master of Divinity from Vanderbilt University, and a Doctorate of Theology from Duke University. He has published widely on the subject, notably The Means of Grace: Traditioned Practice in Today's World (Seedbed, 2015). He was the professor of Church history and Wesleyan studies at Memphis Theological Seminary for four years before becoming the senior pastor of First United Methodist Church in Springdale, Arkansas, where he currently serves.

Click here to view his lecture.

2017-2018 Smith-Willson Lecture

Dr. Brad Elliott StoneDr. Brad Elliott Stone
Thursday, October 5 | 4:00 p.m. | Wroten Hall

Is God Not Black? Racism and Theology

Tuesday, October 10 | 4:00 p.m. | Wroten Hall

The Opposition to Oppression Is Prophecy

Brad Elliott Stone (Ph.D., University of Memphis) is Professor of Philosophy and Chair of African American Studies at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, California. He co-edited (with Jacob L. Goodson) a collection of essays under the title Rorty and the Religious: Christian Engagements with a Secular Philosopher (Cascade, 2012), and they co-edited a sequel volume together titled Rorty and the Prophetic: Jewish Engagements with a Secular Philosopher (Lexington, 2018). Dr. Stone has published journal articles in Philosophical Compass, The Pluralist, Theoforum, Contemporary Pragmatism, The Other Journal, The Xavier Zubiri Review and Foucault Studies. He has book chapters in The Blackwell Companion to Foucault, Foucault: Key Concepts, and Essays zur Jacques Derrida und Gianni Vattimo, Religion. He plans to spend part of his Sabbatical in Winfield, Kansas in Fall 2017 with the intention of completing two book projects: Introducing Prophetic Pragmatism (co-authored with Jacob L. Goodson) and a book on the Four Ds of 20th Century Philosophy: Destruction, Deconstruction, Demythologization, and Demystification.

2017-2018 Beck Lecture

Dr. David OharaDr. David O'Hara
Tuesday, April 3 | 4:00 p.m. | Wroten Hall

Mountains Swimming Home: Why Alaskan Salmon And Guatemalan Vines Matter In Kansas

Dr. David O'Hara, Associate Professor of Philosophy and Classics, Augustana University, teaches a variety of courses, including ancient philosophy, American philosophy, environmental ethics, Asian philosophy, and philosophy of religion. He regularly teaches a course on classics in Greece, and a course on tropical rainforest and reef ecology in Belize and Guatemala. His most recent book is Downstream (Cascade Press, 2014), which is about brook trout and the ecology of the Appalachians. He is also the author of Narnia and the Fields of Arbol: The Environmental Vision of C. S. Lewis (University Press of Kentucky, 2008) and From Homer to Harry Potter: A Handbook on Myth and Fantasy (Brazos Press, 2006). Currently, he is preparing an edited volume of the religious writings of the American philosopher Charles Sanders Peirce. Dr. O'Hara is a graduate of Middlebury College (B.A., Spanish), St John's College (M.A., Liberal Arts), and The Pennsylvania State University (M.A., Ph.D., Philosophy).

2017-2018 Hall of Fame Lecture

Dr. Jacob GoodsonDr. Jacob L. Goodson
Friday, April 13 | 2:00 p.m. | Mossman 101

Is Hope Still Possible in the 21st Century

Dr. Jacob L. Goodson is Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Southwestern College. He spends most of his time teaching general education courses on ethics, history of philosophy, introduction to philosophy, and logic. He is the author of Narrative Theology and the Hermeneutical Virtues: Humility, Patience, Prudence (Lexington Books, 2015) and the forthcoming Strength of Mind: Courage, Hope, Freedom, Knowledge (Cascade Press). He has co-edited two books: Rorty and the Religious: Christian Engagements with a Secular Philosopher, with Brad Elliott Stone, (Cascade Books, 2012) and The Universe Is Indifferent: Theology, Philosophy, Mad Men, with Ann W. Duncan, (Cascade Press, 2016). He serves as the General Editor for the Journal of Scriptural Reasoning. He holds a PhD from the University of Virginia. 

2016-2017 Smith-Willson Lecture

Dr. Ann DuncanDr. Ann W. Duncan
Tuesday, January 17 | 4:00 p.m. | Wroten Hall

Leaning In, Mommy Wars, and the Possibilities of Sacred Motherhood

Ann Duncan is the associate professor of religion at Goucher College in Baltimore. She holds a PhD from the University of Virgina. Author of "Motherhood, Faith, Feminism and the Legacy of the 2008 Presidential Election", Journal of the Motherhood Initiative 5:1, Spring/Summer 2014. Co-Editor (with Steven Jones) of Church and States Issues in America Today, 3 vols., (Westport, CT: Praeger, 2008). Co-Editor (with Jacob L. Goodson) of The Universe Is Indifferent: Theology, Philosophy, Mad Men (Eugene, OR: Cascade Press, 2016).

2016-2017 Beck Lecture

Dr. Joseph WiebeDr. Joseph R. Wiebe
Thursday, September 29 | 4:00 p.m. | Wroten Hall

Christianity, Climate Change, and Life in the Anthropocene

Dr. Joseph R. Wiebe serves as the assistant professor of religion and ecology at the University of Alberta. Wiebe earned his MTS from Duke University and his PhD from McMaster University in Canada. He teaches religion and ecology with interests in communitarianism, imagination, and ethics. His first book, Wendell Berry’s Imagination in Place, comes out with Baylor University Press January 2017.

2016-2017 Parkhurst Lecture

Dr. Kendra IronsDr. Kendra Irons
Tuesday, October 25 | 4:00 p.m. | Wroten Hall

M. Madeline Southard: From the Plains to the Pulpit and Beyond

Dr. Kendra Weddle Irons is an associate professor of religion and humanities at Texas Wesleyan University in Fort Worth, Texas. She holds a PhD in Religion from Baylor University and an MA in Theological Studies from Asbury Theological Seminary. She is the author of numerous monographs, including most recently, If Eve Only Knew: Freeing Yourself from Biblical Womanhood and Becoming All You are Meant to Be (Chalice Press, 2015). Her first book—Preaching on the Plains: Methodist Women Preachers in Kansas, 1920-1956 (University Press of American, 2007)—examines Methodist women who preached in Kansas prior to 1956 and includes two chapters dedicated to M. Madeline Southard, a Southwestern alumna.

2015-2016 Parkhurst Lecture

Dr. Kevin WatsonDr. Kevin Watson of Candler Divinity School will deliver the annual Parkhurst Lecture on Tuesday, March 29, at 7 pm in Wroten Hall. His topic is “No Holiness but Social Holiness: Small Group Formation in Early Methodist Theology and Practice.” Dr. Watson is a leading scholar in current Methodism. He holds a B.A. from the University of Oklahoma, a Master of Divinity from Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington D.C., and a Ph.D. in Religious Studies from Southern Methodist University. He is an ordained United Methodist elder and a John Wesley Fellow. He is the author of many important works including A Blueprint for Discipleship: Wesley’s General Rules as a Guide for Christian Living (2009) and, most recently, The Class Meeting: Reclaiming a Forgotten (and Essential) Small Group Experience (2014).

2015-2016 Smith-Willson Lecture

D. Stephen LongD. Stephen Long, Cary M. Maguire University Professor in Ethics at Southern Methodist University, will be the featured speaker for Southwestern College’s 2016 Smith-Willson lecture Monday, Feb. 22, at 4 p.m. in Wroten Hall.  There is no admission charge.

The title of the lecture is “Let's Get Speculative: The Importance of the Doctrine of God for Everyday Life.”

Long earned his Ph. D. in theological ethics at Duke University.  He has previously taught at Marquette University, Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, and Duke Divinity School. He is the author of “Christian Ethics: A Very Short Introduction” (Oxford University Press), “Divine Economy: Theology and the Market” (Routledge), “The Goodness of God” (Brazos Press), “John Wesley’s Moral Theology” (Kingswood Books), “Living the Discipline: United Methodist Theological Reflections on War,” “Civilization, and Holiness” (Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company), “Speaking of God” (Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company), and “Tragedy, Tradition, Transformism: The Ethics of Paul Ramsey” (Wipf & Stock Publishers).

“He is one of the leading scholars in Christian ethics, and he has published original research concerning the role of philosophy within Methodist theology,” says Jacob Goodson, assistant professor of philosophy at Southwestern College.  

Long’s former students include Goodson and Jackson Lashier, assistant professor of religion at Southwestern.  Kirsten Guidero, visiting scholar at Southwestern, is a current student of Long’s. 

The Smith-Willson lectureship was established by Mr. and Mrs. J. M. Willson to call attention to the important moral and religious aspects of education.  National leaders on various related topics are asked to speak at the annual lecture.

2015-2016 Beck Lecture

Bernard RollinColorado St. University professor Bernard Rollin will deliver the Beck Lecture at Southwestern College on Friday, Oct. 23, at 5 p.m., in Deets Library on the campus of Southwestern College.  The public is invited to attend and there is no admission charge. 

The title of his lecture is “Beyond Pain: Controlling Suffering in Laboratory Animals.”

Rollin serves as the University Distinguished Professor, professor of philosophy, professor of animal sciences, professor of biomedical sciences, and the university bioethicist at Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colo.

He is the author of “Animal Rights and Human Morality” (Prometheus Books, 1981, 1993 & 2006), “The Unheeded Cry: Animal Consciousness, Animal Pain and Scientific Change” (Oxford University Press, 1988 &1998), “Farm Animal Welfare” (Wiley-Blackwell Publishers, 1995), “The Frankenstein Syndrome” (Cambridge University Press, 1995), “Science and Ethics” (Cambridge University Press, 2006), and “Putting the Horse Before Descartes” (Temple University Press, 2011).  He is one of the leading scholars in animal ethics, animal psychology, and animal rights.

“We are very fortunate to host Professor Bernard Rollin, and the Beck Lecture will also be the keynote address for the conference on Animal Suffering (organized by Professor Alice Bendellini),” says Jacob Goodson, assistant professor of philosophy at Southwestern College.  “Dr. Rollin has written several books on animal rights and the problem of animal suffering, and he has also written on the relation between ethics and the philosophy of science.  He is one of the leading scholars in animal rights and animal consciousness and has lectured over 1,500 times all over the world.”

2014-2015 Parkhurst Lecture

Dr. Joseph R. DongellDr. Joseph R. Dongell serves as professor of Biblical Studies with primary responsibility in the Inductive Bible Studies Department at Asbury Theological Seminary. As an ordained elder in the Wesleyan Church, Dr. Dongell has maintained an active ministry in that denomination as an associate pastor, a regular adult Sunday school teacher; a onetime director and frequent advisor of the Wesleyan Seminary Foundation on Asbury Seminary’s campus; an instructor in regional Wesleyan ministerial training; and a representative to the annual Graduate Student Theological Seminar. On Wednesday, April 1st, at 7:00 in Wroten Hall, Dr. Dongell will offer a public lecture called The Strange Logic of Love.

2014-2015 Beck Lecture

Dr. Brad Elliott StoneFor the Beck Lecture this year, we are honored to host Dr. Brad Elliott Stone from Los Angeles, California.  Dr. Stone is Professor of Philosophy at Loyola Marymount University, where he has served as Director of the Honors Program and currently chairs African-American Studies.  On Monday, February 9th, at 7:00 in Wroten Hall, Dr. Stone will offer a public lecture called “Curiositas Ex Machina: A Note on Martin Heidegger’s Philosophy of Technology” -- which will explain Heidegger’s critiques of curiosity and machination as inauthentic possibilities of Dasein.  Dr. Stone's lecture will be relevant to majors in the natural sciences, the social sciences, and those who think about the intersections between philosophy, religion, and science.   

2013 Beck Lecture

 Dr. Jeanine Thwaett-Bates Our 2013 Beck Lecturer, Dr. Jeanine Thweatt-Bates, will be addressing the question of how scientific advancements in technology, particularly those related to artificial intelligence, affect traditional understandings of human spirituality. Can cyborgs pray? Can cyborgs demonstrate authentic belief? How do these questions intersect with theological understandings of the imago dei in humans? These topics are important for broader theological understandings of humanity, humanity's place in the world, and humanity's relation to God. It is sure to be an engaging event.

Dr. Thweatt-Bates holds a Ph.D. in theology and science from Princeton Theological Seminary. She is author of the book Cyborg Selves: A Theological Anthropology of the Posthuman. She currently teaches at the College of New Jersey.

Parkhurst Lecture 2013 in conjunction with Builders in Ministry Week

Dr. Drew DysonDrew A. Dyson is an ordained Elder in the Greater New Jersey Annual Conference of The UMC and serves on the conference’s Board of Ordained Ministry. In addition to serving local churches in New Jersey and teaching as an adjunct instructor at the Princeton and Memphis Theological Seminaries, Drew was Executive Director of the Shared Mission Focus on Young People of the General Board of Discipleship serving as the team leader and primary author of General Conference legislation creating the Division on Ministries with Young People of the General Board of Discipleship in 2004.

Drew has written several books on the practice of youth ministry including: Soul-Tending: Life Forming Practices for Older Youth & Young Adults, Faith Forming Junior High Youth Ministry, Scripture Talks: Creative Messages for Youth Ministry, 52 Devotions to Feed Your Fire: Soul Tending for Youth Workers.


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