Contributing Scholars

Birth and Human Flourishing (2015)
Michael Banner
University of Cambridge

Michael Banner is Dean, Fellow and Director of Studies in Theology and Religious Studies at Trinity College. He was previously the Director of ESRC Genomics Forum and Professor of Ethics and Public Policy in Life Sciences in the School of Molecular and Clinical Medicine, University of Edinburgh, and from 1994 to 2004 was F.D. Maurice Professor of Moral and Social Theology, King’s College, London. His 2013 Bampton Lectures were published in 2014 by Oxford University Press as The Ethics of Everyday Life: Moral Theology, Social Anthropology and the Imagination of the Human. Amongst his other publications are The Justification of Science and the Rationality of Religious Belief (OUP, 1990), Christian Ethics and Contemporary Moral Problems (CUP, 1999), and Christian Ethics: A Brief History (Blackwells, 2009). 

Tina Beattie
University of Roehampton

Tina Beattie is the Director of the Digby Stuart Research Centre for Religion, Society and Human Flourishing at the University of Roehampton. Much of her research focuses on the relationship between the Catholic tradition and contemporary culture, particularly in areas to do with gender, sexuality and reproductive ethics; Catholic social teaching and women’s rights, and theology and the visual arts. She has a keen interest in Marian theology, art and devotion, and in the relationship between medieval mysticism, sacramental theology, and psychoanalytic theory. Her latest research monograph, Theology After Postmodernity: Divining the Void, was published by Oxford University Press in 2013.

Tina Beattie, “A Mother is Born: A Reflection in Four Parts” (pdf)

Lisa Guenther
Vanderbilt University

Lisa Guenther is associate professor of philosophy at Vanderbilt University and the author of The Gift of the Other: Levinas and the Politics of Reproduction (SUNY Press, 2006) and Social Death and its Afterlives: A Critical Phenomenology of Solitary Confinement (Minnesota University Press, 2013). She facilitates a weekly discussion group at Riverbend Maximum Security Institution in Nashville, Tennessee.

James Mumford
University of Virginia

James Mumford is the Nicholas Wolterstorff postdoctoral research fellow. He earned his PhD from Oxford in ethics and religion, published in 2013 as Ethics at the Beginning of Life: A Phenomenological Critique (Oxford University Press). His research interests include bioethics, political theology and modern Catholic social thought. Mumford was an undergraduate at Oxford and a Henry Fellow at Yale. From 2010-13 he worked for leading British political/social policy think-tank, The Centre for Social Justice. He writes on a range of ethical, political and social issues for The Guardian, The Daily Telegraph, Demos Quarterly, The Huffington Post, The Spectator, The Hedgehog Review, The American Conservative and Standpoint.

James Mumford, “Dependency and Begottenness

Expectation and Human Flourishing (2015)
Nancy Bedford
Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary

Nancy Bedford has been the Georgia Harkness Professor of Applied Theology at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary in Evanston since 2003; she is also Profesora Extraordinaria No Residente (Nonresident Professor) at the Instituto Universitario ISEDET in Buenos Aires, Argentina, where she taught systematic theology from 1995 to 2002. She was born in Argentina and obtained her doctorate in theology at the University of Tübingen in Germany, studying under Jürgen Moltmann.

Nancy Bedford, “Expectation

Andrew Chignell
Cornell University

Andrew Chignell is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Cornell University’s Susan Linn Sage School of Philosophy, with secondary appointments in German Studies and Religious Studies. He works primarily in 17th-18th century philosophy (especially Kant), epistemology, aesthetics, and philosophy of religion, and has also written on hope, acceptance, and the ethics of belief. He has co-edited several volumes, and his book on Kantian conceptions of hope, What May I Hope? Answers to a Kantian Question, is forthcoming as part of Routledge’s Kantian Questions series.

Andrew Chignell, “Expectation and Hope in the Anthropocene

Craig Keener
Asbury Theological Seminary

Craig S. Keener is F. M. and Ada Thompson Professor of Biblical Studies at Asbury Theological Seminary. Dr. Keener has authored 17 books, four of which have won book awards in Christianity Today, and has published more than 70 academic articles and more than 170 popular ones. His IVP Bible Background Commentary: New Testament (1993), now in its 2nd revised edition (2014), has sold more than half a million copies. He is coeditor of the New Covenant Commentary Series and of Global Voices: Reading the Bible in the Majority World, is a consulting editor for the Africa Study Bible, and recently served as program chair for the Institute for Biblical Research (2010-12).

Craig Keener, “Messianic Expectation

Jürgen Moltmann
University of Tübingen

Jürgen Moltmann is the Professor Emeritus of Systematic Theology at the University of Tübingen. He was a member of the Faith and Order Committee of the World Council of Churches and also the Robert W. Woodruff Distinguished Visiting Professor of Systematic Theology at Candler School at Emory University. He won the 2000 Louisville Grawemeyer Award in Religion for his book The Coming of God: Christian Eschatology.

Jürgen Moltmann, “Expectations

Christ the Key to Human Flourishing (2014)
Christopher A. Beeley
Yale Divinity School

Christopher A. Beeley is Walter H. Gray Associate Professor of Anglican Studies and Patristics at Yale Divinity School. He is the editor of the Patristic Monograph Series and a director of the North American Patristics Society, a previous director of the American Society of Church History, a steering committee chair of the Society of Biblical Literature, and a founding member of the Episcopal Gathering of Leaders. An Episcopal priest, he has served parishes in Connecticut, Indiana, Texas, and Virginia, and he contributes to Berkeley Divinity School’s Anglican formation program. 

Christopher A. Beeley, “Christ and Human Flourishing in Patristic Theology

Stephen J. Pope
Boston College

Stephen J. Pope is Professor of Theology at Boston College. His research interests include Christian ethics and evolutionary theory, charity and natural law in Aquinas, and Roman Catholic social teachings. He has written The Evolution of Altruism and the Ordering of Love (Georgetown, 1994) and Human Evolution and Christian Ethics (Cambridge, 2007), and he has edited Essays on the Ethics of St. Thomas Aquinas (Georgetown, 2001). 

Stephen J. Pope, “Jesus Christ and Human Flourishing: An Incarnational Perspective

Marianne Meye Thompson
Fuller Theological Seminary

Marianne Meye Thompson is George Eldon Ladd Professor of New Testament at Fuller Theological Seminary. She has developed advanced-level interdisciplinary courses that integrate biblical interpretation with other disciplines of the theological curriculum. A member of the Studiorum Novi Testamenti Societas, she has participated in various projects at the Center of Theological Inquiry, including “The Scripture Project” and “The Identity of Jesus,” as well as ”Teaching the Bible in the 21st Century” at the Wabash Center for Teaching and Learning. 

Marianne Meye Thompson, “Alpha and Omega – and Everything in Between

Joseph P. Wawrykow
University of Notre Dame

Joseph Wawrykow teaches in the Theology department at the University of Notre Dame, where he is also a fellow of the Medieval Institute. He is the author of God’s Grace and Human Action (1995) and The Westminster Handbook to Thomas Aquinas (2005), and co-editor of Christ Among the Medieval Dominicans (1998) and The Theology of Thomas Aquinas (2005).

Joseph Wawrykow, “Aquinas and Bonaventure on Christ and Human Flourishing

Respect and Human Flourishing (2013)
Alon Goshen-Gottstein
Elijah Interfaith Institute

Alon Goshen-Gottstein is the founder and director of the Elijah Interfaith Institute. He has held academic posts at Tel Aviv University and has served as director of the Center for the Study of Rabbinic Thought, Beit Morasha College, Jerusalem. From 1989 to 1999, he was a member of the Shalom Hartman Institute for Advanced Studies, Jerusalem, where he also served as director for interreligious affairs.

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“Arguing For/Over the Dignity of Difference”

Gilbert Meilaender
Valparaiso University

Gilbert Meilaender is Professor of Theology at Valparaiso University. Previously, he has taught at the University of Virginia and Oberlin College. He has served on the Editorial Board of various journals including Journal of Religious Ethics, Religious Studies Review, and Annual of the Society of Christian Ethics. His interest lies in bioethics, and he is a Fellow of the Hastings Center, and has been a member of the President’s Council on Bioethics since its inception in January 2002.

“Transcendence and Alienation”

Michael Peppard
Fordham University

Michael Peppard is Assistant Professor of New Testament, Early Christian Studies, and Religion and Public Life at Fordham University. His work brings to light the meanings of New Testament and other Christian sources in their social, political, artistic, and ritual contexts. Several of his current research projects deal with early Christian art, ritual, and material culture.

“Paul Would Be Proud: The New Testament and Jewish-Gentile Respect”

Miroslav Volf
Yale Divinity School

Miroslav Volf is Henry B. Wright Professor of Systematic Theology at Yale Divinity School. He is also the founding Director of Yale Center for Faith and Culture. A member of the Episcopal Church in the U.S.A. and the Evangelical Church in Croatia, Professor Volf has been involved in international ecumenical dialogues and interfaith dialogues, and is active participant in the Global Agenda Council on Values of the World Economic Forum. A native of Croatia, he regularly teaches and lectures in Central and Eastern Europe, Asia, and across North America.

Joy and Human Flourishing (2012)
Charles Mathewes
University of Virginia

Charles Mathewes is the Carolyn M. Barbour Professor of Religious Studies at the University of Virginia. He was the editor of The Journal of the American Academy of Religion and of the third edition of the Westminster Dictionary of Christian Ethics. He is also the Chair of the Committee on the Future of Christian Ethics by the Society of Christian Ethics.

Charles Mathewes, “Toward a Theology of Joy

Jürgen Moltmann
University of Tübingen

Jürgen Moltmann is the Professor Emeritus of Systematic Theology at the University of Tübingen. He was a member of the Faith and Order Committee of the World Council of Churches and also the Robert W. Woodruff Distinguished Visiting Professor of Systematic Theology at Candler School at Emory University. He won the 2000 Louisville Grawemeyer Award in Religion for his book The Coming of God: Christian Eschatology.

Jürgen Moltmann, “Christianity – A Religion of Joy

Mary Clark Moschella
Yale Divinity School

Mary Clark Moschella is Roger J. Squire Professor of Pastoral Care and Counseling. Prior to joining YDS in 2010, she taught at Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, D.C., for ten years. Beore that, she was a pastor in United Church of Christ congregations in Masschusetts for thirteen years. She coleads the Study Group for Religious Practices and Pastoral Research in the Society for Pastoral Theology. She serves on the editorial board of the Journal of Childhood and Religion.

Mary Clark Moschella, “Calling and Compassion: Elements of Joy in Lived Practices of Care

Marianne Meye Thompson
Fuller Theological Seminary

Marianne Meye Thompson is George Eldon Ladd Professor of New Testament at Fuller Theological Seminary. She is also an ordained minister of the Presbyterian Church USA. She has been instrumental in developing advanced-level interdisciplinary courses that integrate biblical interpretation with other disciplines of the theological curriculum. A member of the Stuidorum Novi Testamenti Societas, she has participated in various projects at the Center of Theological Inquiry, including “The Scripture Project” and “The identity of Jesus.”

Marianne Meye Thompson, “Reflections on Joy in the Bible

Happiness and Human Flourishing (2011)
Adam B. Cohen
Arizona State University

Adam B. Cohen is Associate Professor of Psychology and affiliated faculty of the Barrett Honors College, the Center for Social Dynamics and Complexity, the Center for the Study of Religion and Conflict, the Jewish Studies area, and the Center for Strategic Communication, at Arizona State University. He was the 2009 Margaret Gorman early career award winner from the American Psychological Association and the 2013 of the Godin award from the International Association for the Psychology of Religion.

“Religion and well-being” (with Kathryn A. Johnson)

Eric Gregory
Princeton University

Eric Gregory is Professor of Religion at Princeton University. His interests include religious and philosophical ethics, theology, political theory, law and religion, and the role of religion in public life. A graduate of Harvard College, he earned an M. Phil. and Diploma in Theology from the University of Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar, and his doctorate in Religious Studies from Yale University.

“Happiness: Experienced and Remembered”

Luke Timothy Johnson
Emory University

Luke Timothy Johnson is R.W. Woodruff Professor of New Testament and Christian Origins at Candler School of Theology at Emory University. His research concerns the literary, moral, and religious dimensions of the New Testament, including the Jewish and Greco-Roman contexts of early Christianity, particularly moral discourse, Luke-Acts, the Pastoral Letters, and the Letter of James. He received the 2011 Louisville Grawemeyer Award in Religion for Among the Gentiles: Greco-Roman Religion and Christianity.

“Jesus among the Philosophers: Ancient Conceptions of Happiness” 

Kathryn A. Johnson
Arizona State University

Kathryn A. Johnson is Assistant Research Professor in the Department of Psychology at Arizona State University. She is interested in the social perception of non-human agents across different religious and cultural worldviews. She is also interested in why people come to represent God in these different ways and how representations of God ultimately influence many of our values, moral intuitions, and behaviors.

“Religion and well-being” (with Adam B. Cohen)

Marilynne Robinson
University of Iowa

Marilynne Robinson is F. Wendell Miller Professor of English and Creative Writing at Iowa Writers’ Workshop at the University of Iowa. She is the author of the novels including Housekeping, Gilead, and Home. Her awards include the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction (2005), the Orange Prize for Fiction (2009), the National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction (2005), the PEN/Diamonstein-Spielvoel Award for the Art of the Essay (1999), and the Louisville Grawemeyer Award in Religion (2006).

“Happiness” 

Desire and Human Flourishing (2010)
Wendy Farley
Emory University

Wendy Farley is Professor of Religion and Ethics in the Department of Religion at Emory University. Her teaching and research interests include women theologians, religious dialogue, classical texts, contemporary ethical issues, and contemplative practices. Her most recent book, Gathering Those Driven Away: A Theological of Incarnation, reflects on the meaning of Christian faith and tradition for women, queers, and others that the church has had difficulty recognizing as part of the body of Christ.

“Reforming Desire: a Theology of Incarnation”

Jennifer Herdt
Yale Divinity School

Jennifer Herdt is the Gilbert L. Stark Professor of Christian Ethics at Yale Divinity School. She is the author of Religion and Faction in Hume’s Moral Philosophy and Putting on Virtue: the Legacy of the Splendid Vices, together with many articles and book chapters on a host of subjects. She is currently working on a book manuscript on happiness, obligation, and Christian ethics.

“Desire for the Common Good: A Defense of Eudaimonism” 

R. R. Reno
First Things

R. R. Reno is the editor of First Things magazine. He was formerly a professor of theology and ethics at Creighton University. He is the author of several books including Fighting the Noonday Devil, a theological commentary on the Book of Genesis in the Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible series. His work ranges widely in systematic and moral theology, as well as in controverted questions of biblical interpretation.

“The Empire of Desire”

Jennifer Prah Ruger
University of Pennsylvania

Jennifer Prah Ruger is Associate Professor of Medical Ethics and Health Policy at University of Pennsylvania. She conducts theoretical and empirical studies of health equity to reduce global and national health inequities with a focus on the most impoverished populations worldwide, especially women and children. She has been Principal Investigator and Co-Investigator on awards from the National Institutes of Health, Fogarty International Center, Hewlett Foundation, Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation and she was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship to complete her forthcoming book, Global Health Justice and Governance. She received a Greenwall Faculty Scholar Award in Bioethics and a Donaghue Investigator Award in ethics and economics of health disparities.

“Shared Health Governance”

The Same God? (2009)
Bruce Chilton
Bard College

Bruce Chilton is Bernard Iddings Bell Professor of Religion at Bard College. He is also Chaplain of the College and Executive Director of the Institute of Advanced Theology. He was formerly Lillian Claus Professor of New Testament at Yale University. He is the Founder of Journal for the Study of the New Testament and The Bulletin for Biblical Research. He wrote the first critical commentary on the Aramaic version of Isaiah, and received Evangelical Scholars Fellowship from Whitney Humanities Center at Yale University.

“Alleging the Sameness of God for Christianity, Islam, and Judaism” 

Alon Goshen-Gottstein
Elijah Interfaith Institute

Alon Goshen-Gottstein is the founder and director of the Elijah Interfaith Institute. He has held academic posts at Tel Aviv University and has served as director of the Center for the Study of Rabbinic Thought, Beit Morasha College, Jerusalem. From 1989 to 1999, he was a member of the Shalom Hartman Institute for Advanced Studies, Jerusalem, where he also served as director for interreligious affairs.

“God Between Christians and Jews - Is it the Same God?”

Jacob Neusner
Bard College

Jacob Neusner is Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus of the History and Theology of Judaism at Bard College. He is also Senior Fellow at the Institute of Advanced Theology. He has received fellowships from Fullbright Foundation, Guggenheim Foundation, National Endowment for the Humanities, and American Council of Learned Societies. He has written or edited hundreds of books, including Theology of the Oral Torah (1998) and Theology of the Halakhah (2001).

“Do Monotheist Religions Worship the Same God: A Perspective on Classical Judaism” 

Peter Ochs
University of Virginia

Peter Ochs is Edgar M. Bronfman Professor of Modern Judaic Studies at University of Virginia, where he teaches Jewish philosophy and directs a graduate program in Abrahamic scriptural traditions (“Scripture, Interpretation, and Practice”). He is also the Co-founder of the Society for Scriptural Reasoning.

“Do We Worship the Same God?”

Amy Plantinga Pauw
Louisville Seminary

Amy Plantinga Pauw is Henry P. Mobley Jr. Professor of Doctrinal Theology at Louisville Seminary. She is general editor for Westminster John Knox Press’ theological commentary series, Belief, and serves on the board of the Louisville Institute. She receive a Henry Luce III Fellowship in Theology for 2012-2013 for a project on Wisdom Ecclesiology.

“The Same God?”

Christoph Schwöbel
University of Tübingen

Christoph Schwöbel is Professor of Systematic Theology and director of the Institute of Hermeneutics and Cultural Dialogue at the University of Tübingen. He previously taught at the Universities of Marburg, Kiel, and Heidelberg, as well as King’s College at the University of London. Die Religion des Zauberers. He has many publications in both English and German, including Theologisches in den großen Romanen Thomas Manns (2008), Gott in Beziehung (2002), and God: Action and Revelation (1992).

“The Same God? The Perspective of Faith, the Identity of God, Tolerance and Dialogue” 

Reza Shah-Kazemi
Institute of Ismaili Studies

Reza Shah-Kazemi is a Research Associate at the Institute of Ismaili Studies with the Department of Academic Research and Publications. He is also Managing Editor of Encyclopaedia Islamica, the English translation and edition of the on-going multi-volume Persian Great Islamic Encyclopaedia. He is an author who specializes in comparative mysticism, Islamic studies, Sufism, and Shi’ism, and also the founding editor of the Islamic World Report.

“Do Muslims and Christians Believe in the Same God?”

Denys Turner
Yale Divinity School

Denys Turner is Horace Tracy Pitkin Professor of Historical Theology at Yale Divinity School. Prior to his appointment at Yale, he served as the Norris-Hulse Professor of Divinity at Cambridge University. His area of concentration is the study of the traditions of Western Christian mysticism, with special emphasis on doctrines of religious language and selfhood and on the links between the classical traditions of spirituality and mysticism and the social and political commitments of Christianity.

“Christians, Muslims and the Name of God: Who Owns It, and How Would We Know?”

God's Power and Human Flourishing (2008)
Jean Bethke Elshtain
University of Chicago

Jean Bethke Elshtain was the Laura Spelman Rockefeller Professor of Social and Political Ethics in the Divinity School, Political Science, and the Committee on International Relations at the University of Chicago. She was a Guggenheim Fellow, holder of the Maguire Chair in Ethics at the Library of Congress, and a fellow at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, N.J. She received the Goodnow Award in 2002 and served on the boards of the National Humanities Center and the National Endowment for Democracy.

“Three Meditations on Human Flourishing”

David F. Ford
University of Cambridge

David F. Ford is the Regius Professor of Divinity at the University of Cambridge. He is also the founding director of the Cambridge Inter-Faith Programme and a co-founder of the Society for Scriptural Reasoning. His research interests include political theology, ecumenical theology, Christian theologians and theologies, theology and poetry, the shaping of universities and of the field of theology and religious studies within universities, hermeneutics, and inter-faith theology and relations.

“God’s Power and Human Flourishing: A Biblical Inquiry after Charles Taylor’s A Secular Age“ 

David H. Kelsey
Yale Divinity School

David H. Kelsey is Luther Weigle Professor Emeritus of Theology at Yale Divinity School. He was awarded an honorary doctorate in theology from the University of Tübingen in 2012 and he delivered the Warfield Lectures at Princeton Theological Seminary in 2011.

“On Human Flourishing: A Theocentric Perspective” 

Nicholas Wolterstorff
Yale University

Nicholas Wolterstorff is the Noah Porter Professor Emeritus of Philosophical Theology at Yale University and Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for Advanced Studies in Culture at the University of Virginia. Two of his most recent publications are Journey toward Justice and Justice in Love. He is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

“God’s Power and Human Flourishing” 

Good Power: Divine and Human (2007)
Martin Hailer
Pädagogische Hochschule Heidelberg
John Hare

John Hare is Noah Porter Professor of Philosophical Theology at Yale Divinity School. His interests extend to ancient philosophy, medieval Franciscan philosophy, Kant, Kierkegaard, contemporary ethical theory, the theory of the atonement, medical ethics, international relations (he has worked in a teaching hospital and for the Foreign Affairs Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives), and aesthetics (he is a published composer of church music).

Catherine Keller
Drew University

Catherine Keller is a professor of Constructive Theology in the Theological School of Drew University and its Graduate Division of Religion. As director of the annual Drew Transdisciplinary Theological Colloquim since its inception in 2000, she works with colleagues and students to foster a hospitable local setting for planetary conversations.

“Folding Power”

David H. Kelsey

David H. Kelsey is Luther Weigle Professor Emeritus of Theology at Yale Divinity School. He was awarded an honorary doctorate in theology from the University of Tübingen in 2012 and he delivered the Warfield Lectures at Princeton Theological Seminary in 2011.

Kathryn Tanner
Yale Divinity School

Kathryn Tanner is the Frederick Marquand Professor of Systematic Theology at Yale Divinity School. She serves on the editorial boards of Modern Theology, International Journal of Systematic Theology, and Scottish Journal of Theology, and is a former Co-Editor of Journal of Religion. She is a past president of the American Theological Society, and an active member of the Theology Committee that advises the Episcopal Church’s House of Bishops.

“Power of Love”

Nicholas Wolterstorff
Yale University

Nicholas Wolterstorff is the Noah Porter Professor Emeritus of Philosophical Theology at Yale University and Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for Advanced Studies in Culture at the University of Virginia. Two of his most recent publications are Journey toward Justice and Justice in Love. He is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

“Fallen Powers” 



The God and Human Flourishing consultations are sponsored by the McDonald Agape Foundation.