Hellenic News of America

Brookline - Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology, in cooperation with the World Council of Churches and the Boston Theological Institute' will host an international conference on Violence and Christian Spirituality from October 27 to 29, 2005 on the college campus in Brookline, Massachusetts.

Guest speakers will include Dr. Marc Gopin, Director of the Center for World Religions, Diplomacy and Conflict Resolution at George Mason University; and Dr. Ioannis Petrou, Professor of Social' Ethics at the University of Thessalonike's School of Theology, among other notable theologians and academicians. In opening remarks, the General Secretary of the World Council of Churches, Dr. Sam Kobia, will present the ecumenical challenge of the Christian churches to participate in the building of a culture of justice and peace by overcoming violence. The Keynote Address will be presented by His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios of America, who will address how Christian spirituality advances a culture of justice and peace.

Of particular significance will be Friday,
evening's lecture entitled "Ecumenical Perspectives on Religious Freedom and Human Rights, by Dr. John Witte, Jr., Director of the Center for Interdisciplinary Study of Religion at Emory University in Atlanta. Dr. Witte is a noted specialist in legal history and religious liberty and has published 100 professional articles and twelve books. He is also the Director of the Law and Religion Program at Emory.

Rev. Dr. Emmanuel Clapsis, Dean of' Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology stating his purpose behind this conference remarked: "Violence is a universal scourge that tears at the fabric of communities and threatens life. According to the Report of the World Health Organization on Violence and Health, almost two million people worldwide lose their lives to violence. But violence is often predictable and preventable. The Christian churches, because of their commitment to the gospel of Jesus Christ, must contribute their spiritual tradition in the common effort of humanity to overcome violence by building a culture of justice and peace. The conference will study the multiple and complex aspects of violence and retrieve those aspects of Orthodox Christian spiritual life that contribute towards the building of a culture of peace."

"By hosting the conference here at Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology, we as a center of theological study will also be seen as a center for serious theological reflection," added the Rev. Fr. Nicholas Triantafilou, President of Hellenic College and Holy Cross.

Distinguished scholars from nearby Harvard University, Boston College and Boston University will contribute to the weekend's program. They will include David Little from Harvard Divinity School, David Hollenbach from Boston College, and Dr. Elizabeth Prodromou , from Boston University.

Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology is the only Greek, Orthodox seminary and graduate center for Orthodox higher education in American. Home of the Archbishop Iakovos Library and Learning Resource Center, Holy Cross shares its campus with Hellenic College, the only fully accredited Christian Orthodox undergraduate liberal arts college in America. The schools are located at 50 Goddard Avenue in Brookline, Massachusetts.

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