Communities of Faith and Covid-19

This event was hosted part of Baylor in Washington's Robert P. George Initiative on Faith, Ethics, and Public Policy

In these precarious times, Americans need more guidance than ever before from religious and spiritual leaders. Yet in many places we have ceased gathering together. How can faith communities cope with the COVID-19 pandemic, and what advice do religious leaders have for American citizens right now?

On April 1st, Baylor in Washington and The Trinity forum hosted this important discussion with four of America's most prominent religious commentators about how believers and religious communities can thrive during this extraordinary season and so be prepared to contribute to America's common good.

Meet Our Distinguished Speakers

Dr. Robert P. George is McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence and Director of the James Madison Program in American Ideals and Institutions at Princeton University. He is also the Herbert W. Vaughan Fellow of the Witherspoon Institute in Princeton, and has on several occasions been a Visiting Professor at Harvard Law School. In August of 2017, Baylor University launched the Robert P. George Initiative on Faith, Ethics & Public Policy, and Professor George was appointed as a Distinguished Senior Fellow in the Baylor Institute for Studies of Religion. Professor George has served as Chairman of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom. He previously served on the President’s Council on Bioethics, and as a presidential appointee to the United States Commission on Civil Rights. He has also been the U.S. member of UNESCO’s World Commission on the Ethics of Science and Technology. 

Dr. Cornel West is a prominent and provocative democratic intellectual. He has taught at Yale, Harvard, the University of Paris, Princeton, and, most recently, Union Theological Seminary. He graduated Magna Cum Laude from Harvard in three years and obtained his MA and PhD in philosophy at Princeton. He has written 20 books and has edited 13. He is best known for his classics Race Matters and Democracy Matters, and his memoir, Brother West: Living and Loving Out Loud. He appears frequently on the Bill Maher Show, CNN, C-Span, and on Tavis Smiley’s PBS TV Show.

Professor Hamza Yusuf Hanson is the President of Zaytuna College, the first accredited Muslim liberal arts college in the United States. He has been recently ranked by The Muslim 500 as the 23rd most-influential Muslim worldwide. A leading proponent of classical learning, the traditional liberal arts, and great books education in both the Western and Muslim traditions, he has translated, authored, and coauthored numerous publications. He serves as vice president of the UAE-based Forum for Promoting Peace in Muslim Societies. He is a co-president of Religions for Peace and served on the Ethics in Action for Sustainable and Integral Development initiative. He is a member of the Jordanian Royal Academy for Islamic Studies and has worked with Prince Ghazi bin Muhammad on key initiatives promoting peace between Muslims and Christians. He holds traditional advanced degrees (ijazaat) in Islamic law and theology.

Dr. Daniel Mark is assistant professor at Villanova University, where he teaches political theory, philosophy of law, and politics and religion. He is a faculty associate of the Ryan Center for the Study of Free Institutions and the Public Good, and holds the rank of battalion professor in Villanova’s Navy Reserve Officers’ Training Corps unit. He has served as Chairman of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom. At Princeton, where he earned his bachelor’s and doctoral degrees, he was President of the Center for Jewish Life.

Moderated by:

Cherie Harder serves as President of The Trinity Forum. Prior to joining The Trinity Forum in 2008, Ms. Harder served in the White House as Special Assistant to the President and Director of Policy and Projects for First Lady Laura Bush. Ms. Harder has contributed articles to publications including Policy Review, Human Events, the Harvard Political Review, and various newspapers.

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