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Saint Vincent College Center for Catholic Thought and Culture holds second annual Fides et Ratio Seminar on American Politics and Catholic Thought

by Public Relations | July 19, 2023

LATROBE, PA – On July 3, The Center for Catholic Thought and Culture (CCTC) at Saint Vincent College held its second annual seminar on the American Regime and Catholic Social Thought and Practice at the Fred Rogers Center. In conjunction with the organization Fides et Ratio Seminars, this year’s theme included discussions on Abraham Lincoln and Catholic Thought during his presidency. 

Dr. Jerome C. Foss, Professor of Politics and Endowed Director of the Center for Catholic Thought and Culture, moderated the weeklong seminar of plenary and group discussions. Paul Jackson, Executive Vice President and Director of Advancement at Thomas More College in New Hampshire, helped organize and moderate the sessions.

While most of the week’s discussion centered on Lincoln and the speeches he gave during his presidency, the group read other primary source materials about Catholics living in America during the Civil War. “We wanted to focus primarily on Lincoln, but also wanted to get a sense of what Catholics were doing during the Civil War,” explained Foss.


One such source was Fr. James Sheeran’s journal, which he kept while serving as a chaplain for the Confederacy. Readings and conversation also stemmed around the exchanges between Boniface Wimmer, the founder of Saint Vincent College, and President Lincoln concerning the draft of many monks who were part of the Saint Vincent Archabbey.

Welcoming participants from all over the world, the group brought a mix of backgrounds and perspectives. “Conversation was very lively all week,” said Foss. “It was a great week, and we’re excited to continue with the seminars over the next couple years.”

The CCTC welcomed 30 exclusive participants on campus representing a variety of academic disciplines including philosophy, music and science. Practicing lawyers, high school educators and political figures joined the seminar as well. Among the participants included former Congressman Daniel Lipinski, representative for the 116th district in Illinois.

The attendees included:

Kyle E. Albarado, John Paul the Great Academy

Katie Brizek, University of Illinois at Chicago

Kevin Burns, Christendom College

Nikola Derpich, L.C., S.Th.D., Legionaries of Christ

Thomas Cole, Holy Spirit Preparatory School 

Tony Francois, practicing attorney in California

David Franks, Boston Trinity Academy

Jonathan Fuqua, Conception Seminary College

Elizabeth Goyette, Baylor University

Justin Hernandez, O.S.B., Conception Academy

Mary Imparato, Belmont Abbey College 

Kevin Jones, Alaska Pacific University

Patrick Jones, Catholic University of America

Michael Krom, Saint Vincent College

Daniel Lipinski, Former member of the U.S. House of Representatives 

Steve Mirarchi, Benedictine College

Nikolas Nikas, Bioethics Defense Fund

Nathan Orlando, Benedictine College

John Antonio Pascarella, Utah State University

Gian Parham, Mount Carmel High School, Belize

Maria Arcara, George Mason Law School 

Kaitlin Repp, Saint Vincent College

Richard Sherlock, Utah State University

Benjamin Slomski, Purdue Fort Wayne 

Duston Stout, Our Lady of Wisdom Church and Catholic Student Center

Gerriet Suiter, Duquesne University

Adam Tate, Clayton State University

Matthew Walz, University of Dallas

Telia Mary U. Williams, Northern Illinois University College of Law

Carl Vater, Saint Vincent College

Nick Jobe, Seton Hill University