Baylor Professors Will Lead Discussion on 'Meaning of Christian Pacificism'

Feb. 11, 2008

by Katie Brooks, student newswriter, (254) 710-6805

Baylor University's Center for Jewish Studies, Philosophy Club and Institute for Faith and Learning are sponsoring a presentation and discussion of war and Christianity titled, "Being Christian in a Nation at War...What Are We to Say?" at 3:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 12, in the Heschel room in the Marrs McLean Science Building.

"The presenters will be discussing what they think the church should consider as it reflects on its responsibility before God while living in a nation at war," said Adam Urrutia, a 2007 Baylor alumnus who is coordinating the event.

Dr. Robert Kruschwitz, director of Center of Christian Ethics, will be sharing his opinions on how Christians can understand patriotism.

Dr. Paul Martens, assistant professor of religion, will discuss the proper place and understanding of natural law in moral reflection and action.

Dr. Jon Singletary, assistant professor of social work and director of Center for Family and Community Ministries, will talk about his view about what it means to be disciples of Jesus called to be peacemakers.

Dr. Barry Harvey, professor of Great Texts, and Dr. Jonathan Tran, assistant professor of Christian ethics, will talk about just war theory and pacifism.

The presentations will lead to a conversation, including the audience, discussing the proper Christian conviction concerning the alternative approaches to war and discipleship.

"This conference is of utmost importance," Urrutia said. "We are living in a nation at war and it is our obligation before God to discern what it means to follow Him at this time with respect to armed conflict."

He said the mini-conference will recognize the questions of ambiguity this topic presents and that the presenters hope to suggest possible ways to move forward.

"Some say warfare can be just and others say warfare is inherently unjust. Every side can raise arguments for support...serious objections to the other. Each position, moreover, has been defended by different Christians and Christian groups at different times throughout history," Urrutia said.

Food will be served, and open discussion will take place for the remainder of the presentation, from 5-7 p.m., he said.

For more information, contact Urrutia at

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