WELLAND — A fall tradition continues at the Parish Community of St. Kevin.
Monday, November 26 is the date of the parish’s 2018 Distinguished Speaker Night, the 21st annual.
This year’s invited guest is Dr. Cristina Vanin, an associate professor of theology, associate dean, and director of the Master of Catholic Thought theology program at St. Jerome’s University in Waterloo.
Vanin has chosen as the theme of her address: One Earth: Pope Francis’ Call for an Integral Ecology, a reflection based on Laudato Si’ (“On Care for Our Common Home”), the 2015 encyclical by Pope Francis.
Some of the encyclical’s highlights as reported in Commonweal Magazine (June 2015):
The encyclical strongly affirms the climate science and the gravity of the environmental challenge;
The Pope offers a beautiful meditation on the profound interconnectedness of all creation; and,
The encyclical calls on the global economy to prioritize people and the planet over profits.
Distinguished Speaker Vanin received her BA from St. Jerome’s University, her Master of Divinity from St. Michael’s College, Toronto, and her PhD in theology from Boston College.
Her research is focused on the role that theology can have in helping us respond adequately to the ecological crisis.
She will join an assembly of social justice activists, theologians, journalists, authors and others who, over the years, have come to Welland and St. Kevin’s as participants in the Distinguished Speaker program.
Some of these include: theologian and refugee activist Mary Jo Leddy, Merton scholar and author Michael Higgins, journalists Janet Sommerville, Michael Valpy and Joe Fiorito, social justice activist and theologian Rev. Bill Ryan SJ, social justice activist Doryne Kirby, environmentalist Rev. Greg Kennedy SJ, and last year’s, social justice activist and former Wellander, Ellen Kaas.
Distinguished Speaker Night is being held Monday, November 26 in St. Kevin church, 303 Niagara St. A question and answer session will follow the address. The program gets underway at 7 p.m. It is open to the community.