DUBUQUE, Iowa — Loras College, a four-year Catholic liberal arts college, will host theological ethicist Ryan McLaughlin who will present a lecture on nature and theodicy titled “Natural Evil and the Guilt of God” at 7 p.m. Monday, Oct. 9 in the Alumni Campus Center, ballrooms C and D.
The lecture will address issues of theodicy, the question of how and why God permits the existence of evil, in relation to current understandings of cosmology and evolutionary theory. In particular, McLaughlin will address the theological questions raised by prevalence suffering within the natural processes of the world.
McLaughlin, Ph.D., is visiting professor of religious and theological studies at Merrimack College, North Andover, Massachusetts. His research interests are in constructive theology and ethics. He is particularly concerned with developing a constructive theological framework that adequately addresses nonhuman ethics, including both environmental and animal ethics.
McLaughlin is author of “Preservation and Protest: Theological Foundations for an Eco-Eschatological Ethics,” “Christianity and the Status of Animals: The Dominant Tradition and its Alternatives,” and has published multiple articles in top tier journals, including Modern Theology, the Journal of Religious Ethics and the Journal of Animal Ethics. Currently, he’s finishing a manuscript entitled “Celebration and Lament: Divine Goodness and Natural Evil.”
McLaughlin received his doctorate in theology from Duquesne University, Pittsburgh, in 2014. Prior to his appointment at Merrimack, he served as visiting assistant professor at Siena College, Albany, New York, where he taught courses in theological ethics and medical ethics.
This lecture is made possible through the Science in Seminaries grant of the John Templeton Foundation. It’s the second lecture in the series on science and religion following Neuroscientist Warren S. Brown’s lecture in February.
ABOUT LORAS COLLEGE
Loras leverages its historic roots as Iowa’s first college, the second oldest Catholic college west of the Mississippi River and one of the nation’s 10 diocesan institutions to deliver challenging, life-changing experiences as part of its residential, Catholic setting. Loras ranks among 450 NCAA Division III athletic programs in Learfield Sports Directors’ Cup standings, 11th out of the Top 100 baccalaureate colleges, according to the 2016 Washington Monthly College Rankings, 13th Best Regional College, according to Midwest U.S. News Best Colleges and is among the 200 Best-Loved Colleges in the nation, according to Forbes Magazine.