2019 Australian Lonergan Workshop

Meeting the challenges of our day

How has Lonergan’s thought helped you to meet the challenges of our day, and how will it help you in the future?
Friday 3 May to Sunday 5 May, 2019, St Mary’s College, The University of Melbourne, Parkville

Friday 3rd May

Tom Daly Oration – an Oration in Honour of Fr Tom Daly, SJ

Dr Stephen Ames, Honorary Fellow, School of Historical and Philosophical Studies, University of Melbourne and an Honorary Research Fellow of the University of Divinity

“How might Lonergan help us in addressing the problem of natural evil?”

Natural evil is a problem for belief in this world as created by an all-powerful, all-knowing, and wholly good God, in view of the terrible things that happen due to natural processes, e.g. tsunamis, genetic disorders, extreme weather events, all the suffering and death that is part of the evolution of life on this planet. Natural evil is distinguished from the evil that human beings do to each other and life on this planet. Many people cite this natural evil as why they do not believe in such a God. This paper answers the following question: How might Lonergan help us address this problem and the unbelief with which it is associated?

Video     Audio (56m 53s)

Questions and discussion: Audio (25m 59s)

Saturday 4th May

Keynote presentation:

Professor Frederick Lawrence and Associate Professor Jeremy Wilkins in Conversation

“How Lonergan’s thought has helped me to meet the challenges of our day, and how will it help me in the future?”

Fred Lawrence is Professor of Theology at Boston College and Jeremy Wilkins is Associate Professor of Systematic Theology at Boston College

Video       Audio (40m 39s)

Questions and discussion: Audio Part 1 (42m 55s) and Audio Part 2 (46m 32s)

Panel and Discussion

on “How Lonergan’s thought has helped me to meet the challenges of our day, and how it will help me in the future”

  • Elizabeth Snedden
  • Brendan Cartmel
  • Jacob Mudge
  • Peter Madden
  • John Little

Panel:  Audio (48m 11s)

Discussion: Audio (43m 25s)

Presentations and discussion of current work using Bernard Lonergan’s writings (Post-graduate students)
  • Geoff Brodie (University of Notre Dame): The Horizon of the Teacher as the Foundation of Progress, Decline and Recovery in Catholic Education
  • Elissa Roper (Yarra Theological Union, University of Divinity): The Catholic Church as Synodal: Theological and Practical Implications
  • Clement Papa (Yarra Theological Union, University of Divinity): Lonergan’s Theology of Redemptive History
  • Maddison Reddie-Clifford (University of Notre Dame): Verbum as Linguistic Cipher
  • Michael Costas (Boston College): The Role of Ascesis in Formational Education

Audio Part 1 (38m 48s)   Audio Part 2 (39m 17s)

Sunday 5th May

Keynote presentation and discussion

Dr Kathleen Williams, r.s.m., lecturer at the University of Divinity

“Grace and Forgiveness”

The paper “Grace and Forgiveness” attempts to approach an understanding of what grace is and to explore its relevance to authentic living and in particular its function in human forgiveness: “You can’t have one without the other.” With examples from literature and everyday life, it then examines ways in which the gift of grace, God’s gift to all, plays out in the ordinary – and extraordinary – experiences of people seeking, giving and/or receiving forgiveness. Accordingly, while not ignoring Systematics, the paper is basically an exercise in Communications.

Video     Audio (43m 59s)

Questions and discussion: Audio (10m 19s

Keynote presentation and discussion

Professor Matthew Ogilvie, Professor of Theology at the University of Notre Dame, Perth

“Where is Lonergan Located in Catholic theology?”

In 1965, Fr Lonergan predicted that Catholicism would be afflicted by a divide between “a solid right that is determined to live in a world that no longer exists” and “a scattered left, captivated by now this, now that new development.” The 50+ years since Vatican II seem to have turned Lonergan’s prediction into a fulfilled prophecy. In this presentation, Fr Lonergan will be located within Catholic theology as one who pursued method, rather than issues, and who was dedicated to providing a vantage point outside current debates by being based not on issues or trends but on the intentionality of human consciousness.

Video    Audio (44m 46s)

Questions and discussion: Audio (14m 38s)