San Diego Bishop Robert McElroy to Discuss Politics and the Common Good at Symposium Here April 8

San Diego Bishop Robert McElroy will discuss “Catholics and the Common Good: The Growing Ends of the Argument” in a lecture Friday, April 8, at 7 p.m. in James B. Woulfe Alumni Hall in the University of St. Thomas’ Anderson Student Center.

Bishop Robert McElroy

Bishop Robert McElroy

The lecture, free and open the public, is part of a two-day symposium, “The Common Good Isn’t Common: Catholic Citizenship in an Individualistic Age” that is sponsored by St. Thomas’ Institute for Catholicism and Citizenship.

Dr. Angela Senander, interim director of the institute, said that in his talk, “Bishop McElroy will discuss the importance of the common good in Catholic social teaching and American public life, and will develop insights from his recent America magazine article, 'The Greatness of a Nation.'"

McElroy began his America magazine article this way: “The contrast between the beautiful vision of politics that Pope Francis presented to the United States and the political campaigns that have unfolded in the past several months could not be more heartbreaking.”

McElroy became bishop of San Diego in April 2015. He holds a bachelor’s in history from Harvard, a master’s in history from Stanford, a licentiate in theology from the Jesuit School of Theology, a doctorate in moral theology from Gregorian University in Rome and a doctorate in political science from Stanford.

The two-day symposium will include two other lectures:

  • Kristin Heyer

    Kristin Heyer

    Dr. Kristin Heyer, a theology professor at Boston College, will bring her expertise on immigration to bear on the current refugee crisis in Europe in her lecture on "Civic Kinship: A Catholic Ethic of Immigration" on Friday, April 8, at 3 p.m. in James B. Woulfe Alumni Hall.

  • Nicholas Cafardi

    Nicholas Cafardi

    Nicholas Cafardi, dean emeritus and law professor at Duquesne University, will discuss "Pursuing the Common Good:  Catholic Participation in Political Life" on Saturday, April 9, at 9 a.m. in James B. Woulfe Alumni Hall. Cafardi, a well-known commentator on the intersection of faith and politics, is the author of the 2012 Voting and Holiness.

The McElroy lecture is free and open to the public. The Heyer and Cafardi lectures are open to those registered for the two-day symposium, “The Common Good Isn’t Common.”

The registration fee for the two-day symposium is $30 for the general public and is free for St. Thomas students, staff and faculty.

To register or for more information about the symposium, visit or call (651) 962-5300.

The symposium marks the first anniversary of its sponsor, the Institute for Catholicism and Citizenship, part of St. Thomas’ Theology Department. According to its website, the institute was established to “promote civil discourse, faithful citizenship and the common good by fostering theological insight and interdisciplinary inquiry into economic, political and social issues.”