Ireland Library Lectures


  • Fall: On October 14, 2019, Dr. David G. Hunter, Margaret O'Brien Flatley Chair of Catholic Theology, Boston College presented Between Discipline and Doctrine: Augustine's Response to the Problem of Clerical Misconduct, which addressed how, as an active bishop, St. Augustine of Hippo often had to deal with cases of clergy misconduct, sometimes sexual in nature, sometimes financial in character. Dr. Hunter addressed both Augustine's practice in dealing with specific cases of clergy abuse of power and position, as well as his doctrinal convictions on the question of the holiness of the Church and its clergy. Lecture video on YouTube.
  • Spring: Dr. Deborah Savage will present the spring lecture from 7:30 to 9:00 PM on April 20, 2020 in the 3-M Auditorium in the Owens Science Hall. Watch for more information closer to that date.


  • Fall: On November 8, 2018, Dr. Russell Hittinger presented the intersection of education, church and state, and how Archbishop John Ireland, the first archbishop of Saint Paul and Minneapolis, conceived of this relationship. To mark the 100th anniversary of Archbishop Ireland’s death, Dr. Hittinger addressed the current situation of the three “necessary societies.” Francis Russell Hittinger is the Warren Chair of Catholic Studies and Research Professor of Law at the University of Tulsa. The fall Archbishop Ireland Memorial Library Lecture was co-sponsored by The Saint Paul Seminary School of Divinity, The University of St. Thomas’ Center for Catholic Studies and Office for Mission, and the Office for the Mission of Catholic Education at the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis. Lecture video on YouTube:
  • Spring: Dr. William Stevenson, Associate Professor of Dogmatic Theology, presented the spring Archbishop Ireland Memorial Library Lecture on April 8, 2019. His talk, entitled, Listening Up: Music and Cosmos in Plato’s Timaeus, examined how Plato’s dialogue, the Timaeus, teaches us about the relationship between cosmology and the way we think about our souls, and he especially addressed how one might contemplate the dialogue’s claim that music is the source of both the world and the soul. Lecture video on Panopto.


  • Fall: Sr. Katarina Schuth, O.S.F., Ph.D., Professor Emerita/Endowed Chair for the Social Scientific Study of Religion, presented the fall Archbishop Ireland Memorial Library Lecture on October 16, 2017. She shared insights from her most recent book, Seminary Formation: Recent History-Current Circumstances-New Directions (Liturgical Press 2016). She explored the evolution and development of seminaries and anticipated challenges and principles to guide the future.
  • Spring: Dr. Christopher Thompson presented his book entitled The Joyful Mystery: Field Notes Toward a Green Thomism (October 2017) on Monday, April 9, 2018. The Joyful Mystery seeks to revive the Church's practice of integral ecology and encourages a deeper awareness of the presence of God, the Creator and Lord of the universe. Dr. Thompson, associate professor of moral theology and director of the Center for Theological Formation at The Saint Paul Seminary School of Divinity, draws from the wisdom of St. Thomas Aquinas and the "Green Thomism" he inspires in contemporary life.
    Listen to streaming audio of the lecture


  • Fall: Instead of holding a fall Ireland Lecture, The Saint Paul Seminary School of Divinity collaborated with the University of St. Thomas Institute for Catholicism and Citizenship, the College of Arts and Sciences, the Office for Mission, the Theology Department,  the Center for Catholic Studies, the History Department, the Sociology Department, the Justice and Peace Studies Department, and the GALE Office of Community Engagement to sponsor a presentation by Archbishop Joseph Tobin, C.Ss.R., who had been recently named a Cardinal of the Church by Pope Francis.  Topic:  "Welcoming the Stranger While Challenging the Fear: The Response of the Catholic Church to the Polemic Around Refugee Resettlement in the United States."


  • Fall: Rev. Dr. Tom Margevicius, Instructor of Liturgical Theology and Homiletics at The Saint Paul Seminary School of Divinity.  “Holy and Venerable Hands: Sign Language and the Eucharistic Prayer.”
  • Spring:  Msgr. Jeffrey Steenson P.A., Professor in Patristic Studies, St. Mary's Seminary, Houston, TX, and first Ordinary of the Personal Ordinariate of the Vatican’s Chair of St. Peter, a jurisdiction established by the Holy Father for groups coming from the Anglican tradition who are seeking full communion with the Catholic Church.  "Fr. Paul Wattson, S.A., Servant of God: Adventures on the Path to Christian Unity."
    View a streaming video of the lecture


  • Fall: Dr. Thomas Fisch, Associate Professor of Sacramental Theology and Liturgy at The Saint Paul Seminary School of Divinity. “William Busch and the Pre-Conciliar Liturgical Movement.”
  • Spring: Robert Vischer, Dean and Mengler Chair in Law, University of St. Thomas Law School. "Conscience and the Common Good."


  • Fall: Fr. Scott M Carl. Assistant Professor of Sacred Scripture at The Saint Paul Seminary School of Divinity. “Honey in the Comb: Towards a Spiritual Reading of Sacred Scripture  in the 21st Century.”
  • Spring: Fr. Peter F. Ryan, SJ, Executive Director of the Secretariat of Doctrine and Canonical Affairs of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB). "Priestly Celibacy and its Significance for Evangelization."


  • Fall: Father Andrew Cozzens, Assistant Professor of Systematic Theology and Director of Liturgy at The St. Paul Seminary School of Divinity. "From Crisis to Holiness: Vatican II, Blessed John Paul II and the Renewal of the Ministerial Priesthood."
  • Spring: Bishop Arthur Kennedy, Auxiliary Bishop of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston. "The New Evangelization: Emergence and Conversion in the Lord"


  • Fall: Dr. Stephen Hipp, Associate Professor of Systematic Theology at the St. Paul Seminary School of Divinity. "'Hierarchy' as a Pervasive Feature of the World"
  • Spring: Spring: Fr. Brian Mullady, O.P. "In Defense of Natural Philosophy." Mullady is a nationally-known Dominican priest, retreat master and spiritual director, is the theological consultant to the Institute on Religious Life.


  • Fall: Dr. John Martens, UST Theology Professor and Program Director for the School of Divinity's Master of Arts program. "The Child in the Family of God."
  • Spring: Father Marvin O'Connell, a 1956 graduate of the St. Paul Seminary, Professor Emeritus of History (University of Notre Dame) and a former member of UST's History Department. "A Red Hat for Newman"


  • Fall: Dr. Christian Washburn of the St. Paul Seminary School of Divinity. "Condign Merit, the Council of Trent, and Ecumenism"
  • Spring: Msgr. John Radano, Scholar in Residence, the St. Paul Seminary School of Divinity. "From Reformation to Counter-Reformation and Reconciliation: Approaching the 95 Theses with an Ecumenical Perspective."


  • Fall: Dr. Janet Smith, "Stop! In the Name of Love: John Paul II on Transforming Sexual Desire." [Dr. Smith was Scholar in Residence this semester at the St. Paul Seminary School of Divinity]
  • Spring: Monsignor Christopher Schreck from the Josephinum speaking on St. Paul.


  • Fall: Dr. Christopher J. Thompson, "Preliminary Reflections on the Church and the Environment"
  • Spring: speaker Fr. Michael Sherwin, O.P. spoke on "Rejoice in the Lord: Paul VI's Gaudete in Domino and the Quest for Happiness." [ This kicked off a week-long SPSSOD Pope Paul VI Symposium sponsored by the SPSSOD.]


  • Fall: Panel: Sr. Paul Therese Saiko, SNND; Rev. Christopher Beaudet, and Rev. Andrew Cozzens from the St. Paul Seminary School of Divinity. "Reflections on Deus Caritas Est; The first encyclical by Pope Benedict XVI"
  • Spring: Sr. Katarina Schuth, OSF, "Priestly Ministry in Multiple Parishes: An Emerging Phenomenon"


  • Fall: Dr. Seung A. Yang, "International Priests and American Catholics: History, Context, and Hope"
  • Spring: Rev. Peter Laird, "Autonomy and Morality: Ethics, Aesthetics, and Religion"


    "Great Theologians of the Twentieth Century: A Celebration of Their Legacy"
  • Fall: Rev. Patrick Quinn, TOR, on Yves M. J. Congar, O.P., "Tradition and Traditions: Challenging the Church to a New Future."
  • Spring: Rev. J. Michael Byron, on Karl Rahner, S.J., "The Freedom to Soar: Rahner's Cosmic Vision" Sister Mary Christine Athans, B.V.M., on John Courtney Murray, S.J., "Religious Liberty--A Gift and a Challenge: The Contribution of John Courtney Murray" Rev. Jerome Dittberner, on Bernard Lonergan, "Lonergan for Non-Lonerganians"


  • Fall: Rev. Jerome Dittberner, "Seminary Theology 2003: Still Getting God Right."
  • Spring: Rev. Patrick Quinn, TOR, "Emerging Ministries in the Church: Theological Context and Problems"


  • Fall: Jan Viktora, "Exploring the Nature of Effective Pastoral Leadership in Roman Catholic Parishes: Portraits, Insights and Recommendations for Ministry Formation."
  • Spring: Dr. Deborah Organ, "And So What? Preaching Connection between Professed Faith and Community Living."


  • Fall: Rev. J. Michael Byron, "A Church for Others: Why Non-Christians Have a Claim Upon Roman Catholic Theology."
  • Spring: Sr. M. Christine Athans, on her book, To Work for the Whole People: John Ireland's Seminary in St. Paul


  • Fall: Dr. Tom Fisch, "Theological Significance of the Unvarying and Canonical Aspects of Christian Liturgy"
  • Spring: Sr. M. Christine Athans, "The Americanism Crisis in the Catholic Church"


  • Fall: Sr. Katarina Schuth, "Church Ministry in a New Millennium: Making the Most of These Times"
  • Spring: Dr. Seung Ai Yang, "Re-linking Spirituality and Justice: A Scriptural Perspective"


  • Fall: Rev. Patrick Quinn, "The Church: Communion of Persons and Hierarchically Ordered Society"
  • Spring: Rev. Peter Feldmeier, "The Contemplative Life: East and West"


  • Fall: Rev. Dominic Serra, "In Persona Christi: A Meaning Suggested by the Rubrics and Grammar of the Eucharistic Prayer"
  • Spring: Dr. David Hunter, "The Origins, History and End of Marriage in the Theology of St. Augustine"


  • Fall: Rev. Bill McDonough "The Redemptorists and the Second Vatican Council – 'New terrain' and a 'stumbling stone' in Bernhard Haring's methodological contributions to Gaudium et spes"
  • Spring: Dr. Gene Scapanski, "Origins of a New Identity for the Laity: The 1950s as Prelude to Vatican II"


  • Fall: Rev. John Echert, "Interpretation of the Bible in the Church"


  • Spring: Dr. Michael Patrick O'Connor, "The Catechism of the Catholic Church and the Life of Faith"
  • Note: The library's "Gift for Many Minds" open house was held on May 1 in conjunction with a Centennial lecture given by Sr. Karen Kennelly.


  • Fall: Sr. Valerie Lesniak, "Wisdom's Alchemy: Raissa Maritain's Contemplative Journey"
  • Spring: Dr. Victor Klimoski, "Speaking Their Minds: Priests Reflect on Ministry and Formation"


  • Fall: Rev. James Motl, "Community to Community: Preaching as Social Activity"
  • Spring: Rev. Ron Bowers, "Religion and Law: How Theologies of Law Affect Belief and Practice in Judaism"


  • Fall: Sr. Katarina Schuth, "Catholics in America: Membership, Ministry and Future Trends"
  • Spring: Sr. M. Christine Athans, "Theological Roots of Anti-Semitism of Fr. Charles E. Coughlin—Famous Radio Priest of the 1930s & 1940s"


  • Fall: Dr. Tom Fisch, "Current Thought in Liturgical Theology"
  • Spring: Rev. Phil Rask, "List of Tribes in the Book of Revelation: Anti-Semitism in Traditional Interpretation?"