Visiting scholar to address the Christian roots of religious freedom at Benedictine

October 28, 2015

Lisle, Illinois ~ Robert Louis Wilken, Ph.D., professor emeritus at the University of Virginia and author of several books on Christianity and its history, will lecture at Benedictine University on the Christian roots of religious freedom as part of the Visiting Scholar in Catholic Thought Lecture Series.

Wilken will present "A Loser's Creed" at 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday, November 4, in the St. Benedict Chapel on the fourth floor of Kindlon Hall. He will address "The Church Fathers, Roger Williams and Thomas Jefferson" at 12:20 p.m. on Thursday, November 5, on the fifth floor of Kindlon Hall.

The lectures are free and open to the public.

A professor emeritus at the University of Virginia, where he was the William R. Kenan Jr. Professor of the History of Christianity, Wilken earned a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago and has taught at Notre Dame, Fordham, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Institutum Patristicum Augustinianum and Gregorian University.

Wilken is the author of 10 books, including "The First Thousand Years: A Global History of Christianity" and "A Land Called Holy: Palestine in Christian History and Thought." His books are popular worldwide and have been translated into Japanese, Chinese, Polish, Ukrainian, German and Italian.

The Visiting Scholar in Catholic Thought Series is sponsored by the Center for Mission and Identity (CMI) at Benedictine University.

CMI supports the ongoing development of Catholic social teaching and the Catholic intellectual tradition at Benedictine University. CMI works to communicate a common mission, to provide programming that supports the University's Catholic identity and Benedictine heritage, and maintains that tradition while nurturing a culture of lifelong learning, responsible leadership, social engagement, and religious and cultural dialogue within the entire University community.


Benedictine University is an independent Roman Catholic institution located in Lisle, Illinois just 25 miles west of Chicago, and has branch campuses in Springfield, Illinois and Mesa, Arizona. Founded as a Catholic university in 1887, Benedictine enrolls 10,058 students in 56 undergraduate and 20 graduate programs. Benedictine University is ranked No. 2 among the country's fastest-growing campuses between 2003-2013 in The Chronicle of Higher Education's list of private nonprofit doctoral institutions, and Forbes magazine named Benedictine among "America's Top Colleges" for the fifth consecutive year in 2015. Benedictine University's Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) program is listed by Crain's Chicago Business as the fifth largest in the Chicago area in 2015. 

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