Benedictine College Welcomes Upcoming Papal Document at 2016 Symposium

2016 Symposium on Advancing the New Evangelization

Benedictine College Welcomes Upcoming Papal Document at Symposium

Published: Friday, April 1, 2016

The Vatican Press Office announced Thursday, March 31, that Pope Francis will release the post-synodal apostolic exhortation from the Synod on the Family on April 8. That day is also the start of the fifth annual Symposium on Advancing the New Evangelization held by the Institute for Missionary Activity at Benedictine College.

The theme of this year’s Symposium, “Mercy and the Revolution: The Church’s Mission after the Sexual Revolution,” is inspired by the Synods of Bishops that met in Rome in the Fall of 2014 and 2015, and the Holy Father’s calling of a jubilee year of mercy. Get all the information on the Symposium here.

The content of the forthcoming apostolic exhortation, entitled, “Amoris Laetitia,” will deliver the Holy Father’s concluding remarks on the discussions and recommendations of the ordinary synod of bishops, which was held October 4-25, 2015. The symposium will provide one of the first opportunities to learn about and discuss the vision the Pope Francis will recommend for love, marriage, and family life in the world and the Church today.

“The debates at the Synod on the Family highlight the challenges that the post-sexual revolution world presents to the Church in living out Her mission of proclaiming God’s mercy,” said Matthew Muller, associate director of the Institute for Missionary Activity, “this year the Symposium will one of the first opportunities for the faithful to gather to learn about and discuss the Pope’s decisions following the synod meetings of the past couple of years.”

The two-day symposium consists of three keynote addresses, a set of featured speakers, and dozens of shorter presentations in smaller colloquium sessions. There will also be a screening of the documentary film, “40” which highlights the Pro-life movement since the Roe vs. Wade Supreme Court decision. The film presents abortion as the most important human and civil rights issue of our time.

The keynote speakers are: Dr. Pia de Solenni, theologian, ethicist, cultural analyst and the Associate Dean of the Augustine Institute – Orange County; Dr. Ryan T. Anderson, the William E. Simon Senior Research Fellow in American Principles and Public Policy at The Heritage Foundation; and Bishop Mark J. Seitz, Bishop of the Diocese of El Paso.

The four featured speakers are: Henry Cappello, founding President and Executive Director of Caritas in Veritate International; Dr. David Crawford, an expert in the areas of fundamental moral theology, bio- and sexual ethics, marriage and family, and law; Catherine Pakaluk, Chair of the Economics Department at Ave Maria University and Founder-Director of the school’s Stein Center for Social Research; and Christopher Tollefsen, College of Arts and Sciences Distinguished Professor of Philosophy at the University of South Carolina. 

The dozens of colloquium presenters represent 20 different institutions, various professions, and a variety of vocations. Many presenters will draw upon the contents of “Amoris Laetitia,” in their papers and discussions.

Founded in 1858, Benedictine College is a Catholic, Benedictine, residential, liberal arts college located on the bluffs above the Missouri River in Atchison, Kansas.  The school is proud to have been consistently named one of America’s Best Colleges by U.S. News & World Report as well as one of the top Catholic colleges in the nation by First Things magazine and the Newman Guide.  It prides itself on outstanding academics, extraordinary faith life, strong athletic programs, and an exceptional sense of community and belonging.  It has a mission to educate men and women within a community of faith and scholarship.