Catholic Studies Professors Publish Books

By Victoria Mescall

Co-News Editor

Three professors from Sacred Heart’s department of Catholic Studies have recently published books in the discipline of the Catholic Intellectual Tradition.

The Catholic Intellectual Tradition (CIT) is a 2,000-year-old examination by theologians, philosophers, writers, artists and others seeking answers about God, humanity, society and nature. Sacred Heart students are required to take two seminar classes in the disciple prior to graduation.

“The Catholic Intellectual Tradition is at the core of our mission statement at Sacred Heart,” said Dr. Michelle Loris, Associate Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and chair of the Department of Catholic Studies. “We have built our foundation around it.”

Professor Brent Little’s book, Revelation & Convergence: Flannery O’Connor and the Catholic Intellectual Tradition, is currently available on Amazon.

“Revelation & Convergence brings together professors of literature, theology, and history to help both critics and readers better understand Flannery O’Connor’s religious imagination,” reads the description of the text.

Many CIT instructors assign O’Connor’s works in their seminars, said Little, because of her stories’ creative engagement with Catholic themes such as faith, grace, sin and redemption, which represent the interdisciplinary nature of the CIT.

Revelation & Convergence provides a critical examination that is often missing from contemporary criticism, representing O’Connor’s ongoing conversation with her Catholic theological and literary heritage, and provides a glimpse into the rich Catholic texture of her life and work.

Little produced the text with theologian Mark Bosco, formerly of Loyola University in Chicago, who now serves as Georgetown University’s Vice President for Mission and Ministry.

“I had Professor Little for honors CIT 201 and I loved his class,” said junior nursing major Amanda Miller. “Professor Little made the Catholic Intellectual Tradition engaging, interesting, and thought provoking.”

Professor Jennifer Reek recently penned her novel, A Poetics of Church: Readings and Writing Sacred Spaces of Poetic Dwelling.

Amazon describes Reek’s text as “an imaginative intellectual and spiritual journey away from an institutional model of Church into more radical, ambiguous ‘sacred’ spaces of text.”

Reek explained that her text relates to the Catholic Intellectual Tradition through its interdisciplinary nature, its method of research by “conversation,” and its concern with the Church.

Profesor Daniel Rober’s book began as part of his dissertation at Fordham University, and is now published and entitled Recognizing the Gift: Toward a Renewed Theology of Nature and Grace.

The novel is available online through the EReader JSTOR and Fortress Press.

Rober noted that his text is inspired in part by his studies with theologian Jean-Luc Marion at the University of Chicago. Outside of the classroom, his current research focuses on the convergence of Catholic theology and discourses surrounding the secular.

“Recognizing the Gift puts twentieth-century Catholic theological conversations on nature and grace, particularly those of de Lubac and Rahner, into dialogue with continental philosophy, notably the thought of Marion and Ricoeur,” said the Fortress Press.

“We facilitated great class discussion in Professor Rober’s CIT class”, said junior Lindsay Rourke. “He encouraged a judgment-free environment, so my classmates and I felt comfortable expressing our genuine feelings and opinions about topics relating to Catholic Studies.”

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