Please join us in Room 205 of Falvey Memorial Library on Wednesday, Apr. 3, at 1:00 p.m. for the Pope John Paul II Legacy Lecture featuring Christopher M. Bellitto, PhD, chair and associate professor of history, Kean University. Dr. Bellitto’s talk is titled “John Paul II’s Apologies: The Church Examines Her Conscience.”
According to Dr. Bellitto, John Paul II made an open approach to the church’s past an important aspect of his papacy, especially as he led the church toward the year 2000. In 1994, in his Tertio millennio adveniente, the pope asked the church to examine her conscience to find elements not of faithful service, but of “counter-witness and scandal.” Then he offered his own example of what to do next by asking God’s forgiveness more than 100 times for actions that Christians had taken which “departed from the spirit of Christ and his gospel.” Most dramatically, in the jubilee year 2000, he journeyed to Jerusalem’s Western Wall and asked God’s forgiveness for Christian crimes and sins against the Jews. And yet, few talk about this critical element of his papacy. Join us as we explore this overlooked aspect of John Paul II’s legacy.
As mentioned, Dr. Christopher M. Bellitto is Chair and Associate Professor of History at Kean University in Union, N.J. His nine books include 101 Questions and Answers on Popes and the Papacy, Renewing Christianity, and The General Councils. He is also academic editor at large of Paulist Press and editor in chief of Brill’s Companions to the Christian Tradition.
This event, co-sponsored by Falvey Memorial Library, Office for Mission and Ministry, and Department of Theology and Religious Studies, is free and open to the public.