Past Flannery Lectures

Spring 2020 — Dr. Jennifer Beste

Envisioning a Just Response to the Catholic Clergy Abuse Crisis

In this lecture, Dr. Beste argues that Catholic communities seeking justice and healing must prioritize action on three issues that remain overlooked. First, as a body of Christ, we have not yet fully understood and acknowledged the severe traumatic effects of clergy sexual abuse on youths’ sense of self, their capacity for freedom, and their capacity to relate constructively to God, others, and themselves. Second, recognizing the ways in which survivors continue to suffer from traumatization, we need to forge an authentic way of being in solidarity with clergy sexual abuse survivors and supporting them in their pursuit of justice and healing. Third, we need to examine how Catholic assumptions about children and norms requiring children’s passivity and obedience contributed to the phenomenon of clergy sexual abuse. We need to develop a revised account of what constitutes justice for children.

Fall 2019 — Fr. Tom Doyle

What the Sexual Abuse Phenomenon has Done to the Catholic Church

Spring 2019 — Dr. Maureen H. O'Connell, Associate Professor of Theological Ethics La Salle University

From the Upper Room to Pentecost: Toward an Ethic of Racial Mercy (No print flyer available)

The experiences of White Christians in the United States right now when it comes to crises and conflicts around racialized inequality are akin to that of Jesus’ disciples who locked themselves away in the upper room in the dark days between the Crucifixion and the Resurrection. Many of us desire to be followers of Christ, but are trapped by emotions of fear, shame, guilt, frustration, and anger. Like them, if we desire to cross the threshold of that confining space and move toward the empowering – and multicultural - event of Pentecost, we need to be transformed by God’s mercy. In this presentation, I suggest that before White Christians engage in racial justice movements we must first seek racial mercy. I’ll turn to wisdom I’ve discovered from exploring my own family history with the color line to explain my concerns about racial justice without racial mercy and offer some personal and collective practices for racial mercy itself that might help us show up as more whole people in that critical work.


Fall 2018 — Dr. Andrew Prevot

Cultivating Civic Kinship: A Christian Ethic of Immigration (No print flyer available)


Spring 2018 — Dr. Kristin Heyer, Professor for Theological Studies, Boston College

Cultivating Civic Kinship: A Christian Ethic of Immigration (No print flyer available)


Fall 2017 — Fr. Daniel Groody, C.S.C., Ph.D.

Passing Over: Migration, Theology and the Eucharist


Spring 2017 — Dr. Patrick McCormick

American Religious Violence: Examining the Beam in Our National Eye


Fall 2016 — Dr. Amy Levad

Violence and Our Prison Society: Catholic Moral Theology and the Work for Justice Peace, and Reconciliation


Spring 2016 — Dr. John Haught

Science, Theology, and Pope Francis's Ecological Vision


Fall 2015 — Sr. Ilia Delio

Evolution and the Power of Love: Towards a Holistic Consciousness


Spring 2015 — Dr. Jaennine Hill Fletcher

Love in a Weighted World: The Broken Heart of Catholic Identity


2014 — Dr. M. Shawn Copeland

Toward a Mystical-Political Theology of Solidarity


2013 — Dr. Richard R. Gaillardetz

Vatican II: An Unfinished Building Site


2012 — Rev. Brian Massingale

Cultured Indifference: The Culture of Racism and Catholic Ethical Reflection


2011 — Mary Catherine Hilkert, O.P

The Hint Half-Guessed: Human Life as a Sacrament


2010 — Dr. Luke Timothy Johnson

Empty Religion: Islam and Christianity's Common Peril


2009 — Dr. Peter C. Phan

Forming Catholic Identity in an Age of Religious Pluralism


2007 — Margaret Farley

Gender, Sexuality, and Ethics


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