NEWS

Global scholars examine Thomistic philosophy at annual Mount workshop

July 10, 2017
NEWBURGH, N.Y. -

Philosophy 7

Jacob Gruber of St. Paul’s Seminary in Pittsburgh, Pa. (left) speaks with Fr. James Brent, OP of the Dominican House of Studies in Washington, D.C., during the seventh annual philosophy workshop on Thomas Aquinas at Mount Saint Mary College.

 

More than 100 scholars from around the world recently explored the wisdom of 13th century Dominican friar Thomas Aquinas at Mount Saint Mary College’s Seventh Annual Philosophy Workshop.

The theme of this year’s conference was “Aquinas on Metaphysics.”

The scholars were welcomed by Dr. David Kennett, Mount Saint Mary College president, and Fr. Thomas Joseph White, OP, director of the Thomistic Institute in Washington, D.C.

“I’m so happy that you’re here,” said Kennett, noting that attendance of the workshop was the highest ever, necessitating the creation of a waitlist. The scholars in attendance hailed from at least a half dozen different countries, he added.

Fr. White, a professor of systematic theology at the Dominican House of Studies, is also a member of the Pontifical Academy of Saint Thomas Aquinas, which meets annually in Rome.

“In examining Aquinas on metaphysics, we study being, truth, goodness, and beauty, and ask questions about what constitutes reality and how a deeper study of reality leads to knowledge of God,” explained Fr. White. In applying this to the human condition, “these deep metaphysical questions have concrete applications in their eventual conclusions.”

Philosophy 7

Fr. Thomas Joseph White, OP, director of the Thomistic Institute in Washington, D.C. (right) meets with Dr. David Kennett, Mount Saint Mary College president; and philosophy workshop co-organizer Anna Halpine, founder of the World Youth Alliance and member of Mount Saint Mary College Board of Trustees.

 

In addition to Fr. White, this year’s presenters included Fr. James Brent, OP of the Dominican House of Studies in Washington, D.C.; Jeffrey E. Brower of Purdue University; Edward Feser of Pasadena College; Fred Freddoso of the University of Notre Dame (emerita); Michael Gorman of The Catholic University of America; Steve Long of Ava Maria University in Florida; John O’Callaghan of the University of Notre Dame; and Candace Vogler of the University of Chicago.

The workshop was sponsored by Mount’s Catholic and Dominican Institute (CDI), The Thomistic Institute of the Dominican House of Studies in Washington, D.C., and The Notre Dame Center for Ethics & Culture in Indiana. It was organized by Fr. White; Charles Zola, CDI director, associate professor of philosophy, and division chair; and Anna Halpine, founder of the World Youth Alliance and member of Mount Saint Mary College Board of Trustees.

CDI promotes the Mount’s heritage of St. Dominic, advances the Dominican charism of study and service, provides a forum for discussion of contemporary ethical issues, and enhances Catholic and Jewish dialogue.

Since its inception seven years ago, the philosophy workshop has become “the preeminent event of its kind, drawing scholars from around the globe,” Zola explained. “It inspires great debate, advances research, and fosters community among those individuals studying these topics. We are honored to play host to this academic event at Mount Saint Mary College.”