Vincentian Research Fellows Program

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Introduction to the Program

History

In the summer of 2000, after considerable study and discussion with academic leaders, the Vincentian Chair of Social Justice and the Vincentian Center for Church and Society at St. John’s University created the Vincentian Research Fellows Program.  This program grew out of several years experience of the Chair sponsoring social justice seminars, colloquia and convenings in which faculty from the six schools of the University participated very actively. Its initiation was also animated by professors from The College of Business who, in the spirit of Ex Corde Ecclesiae, in 1995 developed and continues to offer a Church Management program, a contemporary version of St. Vincent de Paul’s 17th century commitment to clerical formation. Also, the interest generated by the Center’s Rendu Roundtable on Religion and Science program brought several disciplines to bear on issues like climate change, evolution, hunger, natural catastrophes and neuroscience. The potential of organizing a cadre of faculty had also been actualized in the assistance offered by faculty in the planning and execution of the 1999 Poverty Conference of the Social Justice Chair, “The Moral Dimensions of Poverty,” the first in what has become a biennial event and is described later in this publication.

This publication is both a tribute to the work of the Fellows as well as a response to the number of questions and the general interest expressed both within the University and from other colleges, universities, sponsors and professional organizations. Many see this collaborative, mission driven program as an effective means to further educate personnel in Vincentian mission and to identify and relate the great resources and learning of the St. John’s faculty.

Food for Thought

A Catholic university is called to become an evermore effective instrument of cultural progress for individuals as well as for society. Included among its research activities, therefore, will be a study of serious contemporary problems in areas such as the dignity of human life, the promotion of justice for all, the quality of personal and family life, the protection of nature, the search for peace and political stability, a more just sharing in the world’s resources and a new economic and political order that will better serve the human community at a national and international level.

Pope John Paul II,
Ex Corde Ecclesiae (32)