On April 16, 2018, The Center for Civil and Human Rights continued its annual series of closed-door roundtable discussions aimed at probing key human and civil rights issues. Bringing an interdisciplinary group of scholars from the Notre Dame community into conversation with those from across the country, the 2018 roundtable focused on race and racism, exploring responses and challenges presented by Catholic Social Teaching.
"Race, Racism, and Catholic Social Teaching" was structured as a series of reflections on the Church and the academy, their relationship to historical racial inequities, and their potential for improving social justice into the future. Both the opportunities presented by CST in fighting racism, and the challenges it faces in doing so, were explored in frank discussions throughout the morning. Turning to the academy, the assembled group sought innovative ways in which institutions of higher learning might leverage their particular strengths to fight the social injustices brought about by racism.
Following the conversation, roundtable participant George Murry, Bishop of the Diocese of Youngstown, delivered a public talk entitled “The Church as a Consistent Voice Against Racism.” Informed by his work as Chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Ad Hoc Committee Against Racism, Bishop Murry laid out an ambitious set of goals for the Catholic Church as an agent for changing racial attitudes. The address may be viewed in its entirety here.
Participating in the 2018 CCHR Roundtable were:
Christine Cervenak, Concurrent Assistant Professor of Law and Associate Director, The Center for Civil and Human Rights
Maria Teresa Dávila, Associate Professor of Christian Ethics, Andover Newton Theological School
Darren Davis, Professor of Political Science, University of Notre Dame
Diane Desierto, Associate Professor of Human Rights Law and Global Affairs, Keough School of Global Affairs, University of Notre Dame
David Hooker, Associate Professor of the Practice of Conflict Transformation and Peacebuilding, Keough School of Global Affairs, University of Notre Dame
Rev. David Jones, Pastor, St. Benedict the African – East, Chicago, Illinois
Jennifer Mason McAward, Associate Professor of Law and Director, The Center for Civil and Human Rights
Maria McKenna, Associate Professor of the Practice, Department of Africana Studies, University of Notre Dame
Karrah Miller, Director for Public Affairs, University of Notre Dame (formerly Director, Office of Institutional Equity & Title IX Coordinator, University of Notre Dame)
The Most Reverend George Murry, Bishop of the Diocese of Youngstown (OH) and Chairman, Ad Hoc Committee Against Racism, U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops
Sean O’Brien, Concurrent Associate Professor of Law and Assistant Director, The Center for Civil and Human Rights
Margaret Pfeil, Associate Professional Specialist, Department of Theology, University of Notre Dame
Bill Purcell, Associate Director, Notre Dame Center for Social Concerns; Operations and Catholic Social Tradition Director
Rev. Pat Reidy, C.S.C., Student Affairs, University of Notre Dame
Veronica Root, Associate Professor of Law, Notre Dame Law School
Vincent Rougeau, Dean, Boston College Law School
Rev. Kevin Sandberg, C.S.C., Executive Director, Notre Dame Center for Social Concerns
Susan Sharpe, Restorative Justice Advisor, Notre Dame Center for Social Concerns
Stephen Smith, Professor of Law, Notre Dame Law School
The Roundtable Series is inspired by the work of CCHR founder Fr. Theodore Hesburgh, whose guiding vision for the Center was to create at Notre Dame a locus for enlightened, vigorous, and engaged inquiry into the most pressing social issues of the day. Key to the Roundtable Series is a commitment to use its insights to inform future research and educational activities.
The 2016 inaugural roundtable focused on the intersection of human rights and Catholic social teaching. Details may be found here.