Theology, Tradition, and our Times
Theology | Tradition | ... and Our Times
"The Church and Human Flourishing" by Dr. Andrew Kaethler br>November 30, 2022
Dr. Andrew Kaethler grew up in the Lower Mainland. He received a B.A. in Christianity and Culture from TWU as well as an M.A. in Religion, Culture, and Ethics. Following his MA, Andrew spent a year running (actually sanding, spraying, and brushing) his own painting company before his wife fortunately encouraged him to pursue teaching. Surprisingly, this led Andrew and his family to Eastern Europe, Lithuania to be precise. Here at LCC International University, Andrew taught philosophy, theology, and cross-listed English/theology courses for four years and during this time discovered his love and passion for teaching. After four years and two additional children he moved to St Andrews, Scotland, where he spent four years working on a Ph.D. in systematic theology at the University of St Andrews. Although he did not golf in Scotland, he did participate in the consumption of haggis, drank a few drams of whiskey, and danced at the odd Ceilidh. It was in Scotland, the land of the fiery reformer John Knox, that Andrew and his family were received into the Catholic Church, a ‘conversion’ process that began at TWU almost twenty years earlier.
Lecture Description: TBA
Most Recent CPC³ Lecture:
"Paradoxical Spaces of Belief in Paranormal Investigation Cultures" by Dr. Paul Kingsbury br>October 26, 2022
Dr. Paul Kingsbury examines UFO conferences, ghost investigations, and Sasquatch expeditions to consider how these have proliferated. He explores how the paranormal investigators’ enduring and unaware beliefs in God or the “big Other” are manifest in their social behaviours and rituals. What does this all mean in relation to Christian faith?
Despite the formation of a Western secular society, researchers have observed a surge in the beliefs and practices associated with the paranormal. Central to these new paranormal cultures is the increase in popularity of paranormal investigation organizations that study anomalous phenomena. My lecture examines the psychoanalytic geographies of UFO conferences, ghost investigations, and Sasquatch expeditions to consider how these spaces have proliferated not because of the oft-proclaimed death of God, but because, following Jacques Lacan, “God is unconscious.” Given Lacan’s anti-psychological assertion that the “unconscious is outside,” I explore how the paranormal investigators’ enduring and unaware beliefs in God or the “big Other” are materially externalized in their socio-spatial practices and rituals. Specifically, I illustrate how these spaces of belief are animated by a series of Lacanian paradoxes: enjoyment as an injunction, fantasy as a support of reality, recovering an object of desire that was never lost, love as giving something we don’t have, and non-dupery as the shortest path to error. I conclude by reflecting on how paranormal investigations are quite ordinary insofar as the above paradoxes permeate everyday life and are predicated on a faith in mystery rather than a mystery of faith.
Scripture as Incarnation br> by Dr. David Henderson
Attitudes toward Scripture vary greatly from century to century. Yet there is perhaps no more marked difference than between the divergent ways in which contemporary and pre-modern readers approached the Bible. Unlike in past ages, readers of the Scriptures today find themselves burdened by skepticism, doubts as to whether the Bible adequately “proves” its sacred, inspired quality. As a result, we find it difficult to discern how this peculiar, ancient text still relates to the challenges, triumphs, and struggles of our lives. This lecture draws attention to one facet of this modern shift and the radically novel account of the “nature” of the Bible that rose to prominence in the 17th century. With reference to the pre-modern view, the lecture then contrasts the “loneliness” of modern exegesis with its ancient alternative, speaking to what it means to read the sacred texts as a “Church.” Here, an appreciation for the “sacramental” quality of the Sacred Scriptures encourages us to read the Bible as not just a story “about” the past events of redemption, but rather as being itself an “Incarnation,” a manifestation or extension of redemption in the very midst of our lives.
About Dr. David Henderson:
Dr. David Henderson is a native of the Lower Mainland and received his B. A. in Christianity and Culture from TWU. He also holds a Masters of Theology from Regent College and a doctorate in Moral Theology from the Saint John Paul II Institute for Marriage and Family at the Catholic University of America in Washington, DC. David has authored essays on ecology and sexual ethics and is an assistant editor of the online review journal Humanum. Having converted to Catholicism in 2013, David brings an interest for theological aesthetics, the conflict between ancients and moderns, and the ongoing reception of the Second Vatican Council. He currently lives with his wife and two children in Langley, BC.
"Mary Our Mother: John Paul II’s Theology of Maternal Mediation" by Dr. Carly Henderson
Jordan Peterson: Sic et Non by Prof. Ron Dart February 10, 2022
"The Challenge and Promise of Christian Humanism" with Dr. Jens Zimmermann
January 27, 2022
Jens Zimmermann is J.I. Packer Chair of Theology at Regent College. He is former Canada Research Chair for Interpretation, Religion, and Culture (2006-2016), and has published widely on on philosophical and theological topics. Some of his works are Humanism and Religion (2012), Hermeneutics: A Very Short Introduction (2015), and Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s Christian Humanism (2019), all with Oxford University Press. He is currently working on a book on what it means to be a person.
Christian educational institutions often wonder how best to educate in a secular age. In this lecture, Jens Zimmermann will argue that the main challenge Christian education faces at present is neither secularism nor secularity but a techno-scientific worldview that disregards, diminishes, and therefore destroys, the living human person. According to Christian Humanists, the goal of Christian education is to foster true humanity by helping students to become more Christlike, and therefore to become fully a person, a truly living human being. The techno-scientific vision and our uncritical immersion in its applications are diametrically opposed to this humanistic goal. For example, giving ourselves over to technology fosters neither embodied living, nor the freedom of critical thought, nor the patient dwelling with texts, or the slow, deliberate acquisition of language required for understanding another’s viewpoint. And yet, this techno-scientific vision drives the pet projects of those who are increasingly shaping our societies. What educators should worry about, therefore, is not so much secularity itself, but the techno-scientific worldview and technocratic policies that threaten to redefine and govern every aspect of our lives.
"Human Dignity in Creation: Evolution and Metaphysical Form" with Dr. Paul Allen
October 28, 2021
Dr. Paul Allen is Dean and Professor at Corpus Christi College, Vancouver, Canada.
In his lecture, Dr. Allen will present a paper on a theological argument that human dignity is best understood within the scope of the theological doctrine of creation, assisted by an engagement with Darwin’s theory of evolution.Human dignity based on human will (Kant), our legal equality with one another (Rawls) or a loose concept of self-transcendence (Tanner et al.) are insufficient. But, as a component part of creation doctrine, human dignity is both a plausible interpretation of our bodily form and a way of expressing the irreducible character of human freedom, ordered to relationship with God. Darwin’s theory of evolution supports a metaphysics of human form, despite the naturalism that runs through his thought.
From Idol to Icon with Dr. Andrew Kaethler
September 30, 2021
Arguably, the human individual and its concomitant the human body are idols of secularism. There is a certain irony, perhaps an irony shared with all idols, that such idolatry is so close, and yet so far, from true Christian worship. C.S. Lewis notes that if we could see our neighbour for who he will one day be we would be tempted to worship him. That is, “next to the Blessed Sacrament itself, your neighbour is the holiest object presented to your senses. If he is your Christian neighbour, he is holy in almost the same way, for in him also Christ vere latitat—the glorifier and the glorified, Glory Himself, is truly hidden.” Following Lewis’ direction, we could say that idols and icons are closely related. If this is truly the case then confronting the idols of secularism may involve re-conception rather than replacement.
With this affirmative approach I want to think through how idolatry of the body can be re-conceived as a step in the right direction, leading away from idolatry of the self, and how the body as an idol can be transformed into an icon. In particular, it will explore how male and female difference, or otherness, can be a catalyst for such an iconic transformation.
Presented on November 2, 2020
Topic Outline: Ophelia’s madness and death have inspired visual art for centuries. But what makes her image so spectacular and compelling? Considering the post-Reformation environment in which Hamlet was written, this talk suggests resonances between the play’s representation of mad Ophelia and the iconography of St. Mary Magdalene. Ophelia’s unbound hair and bawdy lute call to mind similar characteristics of the penitent disciple as she is depicted in Renaissance art. Mary Magdalene’s renunciation of material comforts and physical beauty was, for many Reformers, a fitting symbol of the Protestant attempt to return to a pared-down aesthetic of worship. In carrying over these distinctive traits of Magdalene iconography, the image of mad Ophelia implicates a broader concern in Hamlet with the material nature of repentance. Through her, Shakespeare holds a mirror up to England after the Reformation, reflecting what it was and what had been lost.
Presented on October 2, 2020
Find out more about him at https://www.catholicpacific.ca/academics/faculty/fr-david-bellusci-o-p
Presented on February 27, 2020
Dr. David Baird, Assistant Professor of Theology at Catholic Pacific College, on the Immaculate Conception of Mary. As the title says, find out the ‘when? why? and how?’ of Catholic doctrine concerning Our Lady’s preservation from sin from the moment of her conception.
Dr. Baird’s research focuses on theology and culture, with particular interests in Christianity’s intersections with story and film. He is currently working on projects related to the early writings of G.K. Chesterton, the theology of Holy Saturday, and the theological significance of postapocalyptic zombie fiction.
Presented on October 17, 2019
Fr. David Bellusci, O.P. has just released his book "Love Deformed, Love Transformed: A Christian Response to Sexual Addiction" (Copies are available at Holy Family Catholic Bookstore or at Amazon.ca) and he is our next CPC³ guest lecturer. On October 17, at 7pm, Fr. Bellusci will present a lecture on his book which will be responded to by CPC Academic Dean, Dr. Andrew Kaethler, and CPC student, Dominic Lindl.
Presented on April 4, 2019
Dr. Andrew Kaethler spoke on the place of "Church" in Christian life. Is it essential, part of the nature of being a Christian? Or is it merely external, and potentially something onerous, to Christian life?
theological interests are Catholic thought, the church fathers, and spiritual interpretation of Scripture. Hans and his wife Linda attend Saint Matthew’s Anglican Church (ACNA) in Abbotsford, BC.
Presented on March 22, 2018
Presented on February 22, 2018
Presented on January 25, 2018
Presented on October 26, 2017
Presented on November 28, 2017