Religious Liberty Event Headlines Fall Semester
The Institute for Policy Research & Catholic Studies (IPRCS) will be teaming up with the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) and Catholic Relief Services (CRS) to sponsor a symposium on “International Religious Freedom: An Imperative for Peace and the Common Good.” The symposium will be held at CUA’s campus on September 12, 2012.
Cardinal Timothy Dolan, Archbishop of New York and President of the USCCB, will give the opening address, after which three breakout sessions will look at the issue of religious liberty in three different countries: Cuba, Iraq and Nigeria. The session on Cuba will feature Archbishop Thomas Wenski, who has extensive ties to Cuba, and Thomas Garofalo, CRS’s former country representative in Cuba. Archbishop Francis Chullakit, the Holy See’s ambassador to the United Nations, and Ms. Tina Ramirez from the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty will conduct the session on Iraq. Archbishop Chullakit was the nuncio in Iraq during the Iraq war and was the only foreign ambassador to remain in Baghdad throughout the fighting. The panel on Nigeria will feature Archbishop John Onaiyekan of Abuja and Fr. Aniedi Okure, O.P., a senior fellow at IPRCS.
Following the break out sessions, Professor Jean Bethke Ehlstain of the University of Chicago, Catholic University’s Professor Maryann Cusimano Love, also a fellow at IPRCS, and Mr. John Carr, formerly at the USCCB and now at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard, will lead a panel discussion on what the Church can do to defend religious liberty. They will be followed by an address by Mr. Denis McDonough, Deputy National Security Advisor to the President. The event will conclude with a dinner at which Archbishop Silvano Tomasi, Permanent Observer to the United nations agencies in Geneva, will deliver a closing address.
The event is fully subscribed, but videotape of all sessions will be available at the IPRCS website after the event.
The symposium kicks off a busy semester at IPRCS. On October 14, at 2 p.m., IPRCS will join with the American Jewish Committee for a symposium on poverty and public policy. Former Ambassador to the Holy See Thomas Patrick Melady is spearheading this event which will be held at Caldwell Hall on campus.
On October 22, from Noon until 3 p.m., IPRCS is hosting a panel discussion on Catholic voters and the 2012 election at the National Press Club. IPRCS executive director Stephen Schneck will be joined by Mark Rozell of George Mason University, Greg Smith of the Pew Research Center and pollster and IPRCS Senior Fellow John Zogby.
Finally, on November 8-10, IPRCS is co-sponsoring a scholars’ conference on Pope Benedict XVI’s teaching on the environment. The three-day event will feature papers from scholars across the country, including the Rev. Msgr. Kevin Irwin, of Catholic University’s School of Religious Studies. This conference will be the first nationwide scholars’ conference to examine this important and seminal development in the Church’s social magisterium.
“It is going to be a busy semester,” said Professor Schneck. “But, all of these events, in different ways, will help further the mission of the university, serving both Church and nation through the rigorous academic examination of vital public policy issues. We couldn’t be more excited.”