Science and Religion: Faculty, Students and Benedictines in Conversation
St. John’s University
This society brings together monks, students and faculty from the university, the College of St. Benedictine, St. John’s Seminary and the Abbey of St. John the Baptist to form this dynamic and exploratory group. Bi-monthly discussion groups focuses on one or two texts per semester examining topics such as the religious interface with physics and cosmology; evolutionary biology; environmental biology; computer and biotechnology. Coupled with readings and discussions, invited authors spend time at each institution giving public presentations and addressing classes, with informal discussions as an added benefit for society members. Envisioned as a “step toward developing a program in science and religion at St. John’s”, a broader goal includes the ability to leverage and solicit funds, based on the successful reception of the society, to develop an endowed chair in science and religion and the future consideration of a minor concentration in science and religion. This initiative has been awarded two LSI Supplemental grants, in 2004 and 2005, to support the production of roundtable discussions with invited authors for local public television. Matching funds are provided by St. John’s University.