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HCHC Hosts Symposium on Creation and Ecology

The Pappas Patristic Institute of Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology sponsored a “Symposium on Creation and Ecology: Insights from Patristic and Contemporary Christian Sources” on October 5 and 6, 2017, here on campus. The subject, both timeless and timely, drew diverse audiences of scholars and students, both graduate and undergraduate, to lectures by four distinguished speakers.

Dr. Jame Schaefer of Marquette University focused her talk on “Receiving the Gift of Creation with Gratitude: Insights from Basil of Caesarea, John Chrysostom, and Patriarch Bartholomew Informed by Contemporary Science.” Dr. Bruce Foltz of Eckerd College titled his lecture “’The Lord Is in This Place, Yet I Did Not See It’: From the Concept of Nature to the Experience of Creation.” Dr. David Goodin of McGill University spoke about “Christology and Eco-Theology: The Centrality of Cyril of Alexandria in Safeguarding Ethiopian Tewahedo Church Forests.” His lecture included extraordinary aerial images of churches surrounded by forests with vast tracts of desert beyond those sacred oases. The final lecture was delivered by Rev. Dr. Robert Daly, SJ, of Boston College on “Ecological Euchology: ‘Cosmic Liturgy?’” and offered yet another perspective.

Reflecting on the symposium as a whole, Dr. Bruce Beck, Director of the Pappas Patristic Institute and member of both the Hellenic College and Holy Cross faculties, said, “I was delighted that our students were able to take advantage of this symposium on our campus. Also, I was pleasantly surprised to hear a few shared themes across all four of the papers, including—to take just one—the importance of cultivating an aesthetic gratitude for God’s creation, and articulating a theological understanding of God’s creation as a gift rather than just a consumable resource.”


Learn more about the Pappas Patristic Institute and its upcoming events at www.hchc.edu/patristics.