2013 Faculty Retreat Main Sessions
The following links lead to pages where the audio can be streamed or downloaded.
Jim Wallis and Jay Richards on the Common Good and the Church
In Carl F. H. Henry's landmark work, The Uneasy Conscience of Modern Fundamentalism, he criticized evangelicals (then "fundamentalists") for their isolationism and their unwillingness to confidently confront the pressing social evils of our day from the theistic and redemptive standpoint of Christian theology. Over a half century later, evangelicals by and large have either failed to heed that warning or still remain unable to answer the question absolutely: What is the place of the Church in the public square? In this Trinity Debate, Jay Richards and Jim Wallis address the question of Christian social engagement through the lens of the common good. Each presents a proposal and responds to the other on the question, "What is the common good? And how should the Church, and Christians, pursue it?"
Father Robert Sirico on Being Responsible: The Church, Human Energies, and Poverty
Christian social thought, and specifically the doctrine of subsidiarity, was able to solve problems of material poverty, making the Christian West the first civilization in history to bring economic freedom and economic prosperity to the common person. This religious tradition, Father Sirico argues, remains essential for addressing the modern issues of poverty and human dignity, and offers a preferable alternative to, on the one hand, contemporary emphases on the "common good" and "social justice" (usually defined with collectivist and socialist ideas) and, on the other hand, the radical individualism of Ayn Rand. A Christian notion of freedom, which understands the human person as both social and individual, is a safer protector and promoter of authentic 'fraternity' and sociality than these alternatives, and offers important guideposts for how society and the Christian community is best structured to take account of this reality.