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University Hosts First-Ever JPII Conference
Inaugural Conference Attracts Leading Catholic Scholars, Commentators

The University of Dallas is proud to host the first-ever JPII Conference organized by St. John Paull II Teaching Fellow Ryan T. Anderson, Ph.D., in collaboration with the American Public Philosophy Institute, on April 15–16. The two-day engagement, titled “America, Liberalism and Catholicism," is co-sponsored by Liberal Learning for Life, the university’s ongoing educational initiative, and features faculty experts as well as notable lecturers and thought leaders from around the country. 

“The University of Dallas for many reasons, including its rigorous liberal arts education, outstanding faculty, and commitment to service of Church and country, is uniquely suited to a lively and serious set of reflections on Catholicism and the American political order,” said President and Provost Jonathan J. Sanford, Ph.D. “This conference provides our students and other participants an excellent opportunity to engage with and learn from leading scholars who are confronting questions regarding Catholicism and America from very different perspectives."

"Since the beginning of our nation, Catholics have debated the structure of our government and the best ways to live as faithful citizens, both Catholic and American. The challenges confronting Catholics in America today renew these questions with particular urgency, and I'm grateful to the University of Dallas for its leadership in bringing together some of the brightest scholars addressing these issues today," said Ryan Anderson, who will serve as conference moderator.  

WHO: Ryan Anderson joined UD in 2019 with the formation of the St. John Paul II Teaching Fellowship in Social Thought, and is current president of The Ethics and Public Policy Center. Other speakers include:

  • Ross Douthat, The New York Times op-ed columnist, conservative critic and former senior editor at The Atlantic

  • Patrick Deneen, professor of political science at the University of Notre Dame and frequent author of First Things, The American Conservative and The Chronicle of Higher Education

  • Joseph E. Capizzi, professor of moral theology and ethics and executive director of the Human Ecology Institute at The Catholic University of America

  • Chad Pecknold, associate professor of theology at The Catholic University of America, and frequent contributor for The Catholic Herald, First Things, The Wall Street Journal, the New York Post and National Review  

  • Robert Koons, professor of philosophy at the University of Texas at Austin 

  • Other UD faculty: Gladden Pappin, Ph.D., assistant professor of politics and deputy editor of American Affairs; Daniel Burns, Ph.D., associate professor of politics, interim associate dean of the Constantin College of Liberal Arts and contributing editor at Public Discourse; and Christopher Wolfe, Ph.D., distinguished affiliate professor and president of the American Public Philosophy Institute

WHAT: JPII Conference on “America, Liberalism and Catholicism." View the full conference agenda here.

WHEN: Thursday, April 15 – Friday, April 16, 2021

WHERE: University of Dallas, Irving, TX. A campus map is available here. 

Due to limited seating, livestream broadcasts will be available via YouTube.

Media interested in covering this event or arranging interviews should contact Chief Marketing & Communications Officer Clare Venegas, at 972-721-5179, (cell) 949-892-8545 or cvenegas@udallas.edu.

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May 5, 2021

By Callie Ewing, BA ’03 MH ’22 Sts. Louis and Zélie Martin, canonized in 2015, were a French Roman Catholic couple and parents to five daughters, most notably St. Thérèse of Lisieux,...

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