The Russell Family Research Fellowship in Religion and Science

Annual Russell Family Research Fellowship in Religion and Science
 

The annual Russell Family Research Fellowship in Religion and Science brings internationally distinguished scholars in religion and science to the GTU.

Since 1981, Russell Fellows have been in residence at CTNS/GTU every year to conduct research, teach doctoral and seminary courses and present public lectures at the GTU and at other San Francisco Bay Area locations.

The annual Russell Family Fellowship in Religion and Science was created in memory of John K. Russell (1896-1958). Mr. Russell, born of Italian immigrants, was an industrial engineer and humanitarian. In 2015, The J.K. Russell Research Fellowship in Religion and Science was renamed the Russell Family Fellowship in Religion and Science to honor the contributions of the Russell Family as a whole to this annual Fellowship.

2019-2020 Fellowship

Living Into our Shared Humanity: Exploring the Religious Significance of Astrobiology

2020 Fellow Dr. Adam Pryor

Adam Pryor is Associate Professor of Religion and Dean of Academic Affairs for Student Success at Bethany College. Dr. Pryor supervises the Student Success Center which coordinates first-year experience programming on campus with academic services such as tutoring and advising. As a scholar his research is especially focused on issues in religion and science, phenomenology, queer studies, and the work of Paul Tillich. He is the author or editor of a number of books, the most recent is entitled Living with Tiny Aliens: The Image of God for the Anthropocene (Fordham Univ. Press, 2020). It works to articulate foundational insights for an astrobiological humanities. Specifically, it seeks to imagine how an individual's meaningful existence persists when we understand ourselves to be planetary creatures situated in deep time―not only on a blue planet burgeoning with life, but in a cosmos pregnant with living possibilities.

Fellowship Events:

CTNS Public Forum, Thursday, March 5

Research Conference, Saturday, March 7

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Playful Encounters of the Third Kind: How Science and Religion Dialog Intersects with Interfaith Advocacy

Fellow's Public Forum

Thursday, March 5, 2020, 7pm

Richard S. Dinner Board Room
Graduate Theological Union (Flora Lamson Hewlett) Library
2400 Ridge Road, Berkeley, California, USA 

In this talk, Adam Pryor will examine how the development of intellectual values that can occur through Religion and Science dialog overlap with the development of critical values and skills for Interfaith advocacy work. Focusing particularly on envy, humility, and belonging, he will reflect on how classic methods in the field of Religion and Science can open new avenues for thinking about contemporary challenges in Interfaith Studies and the articulation of faith identity in teaching undergraduate students. 

This event is free and open to the public.

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What if We're not Alone: Considering the Significance of Non-Intelligent Alien Life for Constructive Christian Theology

The Annual Russell Family Research Conference

Saturday, March 7, 2020, 1-5pm 

Richard S. Dinner Board Room
Graduate Theological Union (Flora Lamson Hewlett) Library
2400 Ridge Road, Berkeley, California, USA

Registration required.

Building on his forthcoming work, Living with Tiny Aliens, Dr. Pryor will consider how the astrobiological research can influence three concepts widely used within the Christian theological tradition: the image of God, sin, and vocation. He will consider the significance and challenges of understanding these doctrines in light of an astrobiological and ecological sense of 'planetarity.' Finally, he will consider how reframing these theological concepts at a planetary scale has consequences for imagining the ethical actions of individual religious persons.

Conference Respondents: Braden Molhoek, Hyung-Joo Lee, Jamie Fowler, and Ted Peters

Braden Molhoek

Braden Molhoek is a Program Associate at the Center for Theology and the Natural Sciences, a Lecturer in Science, Technology, and Ethics at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, and an Adjunct Lecturer in the School of Engineering at Santa Clara University. Studying Genetics and Religion as a double major in his undergraduate studies, he went on to obtain a Ph.D. from the GTU in Ethics and Social Theory. His interests include the science and religion dialogue, how science shapes theological anthropology, gene editing and human enhancement, transhumanism, AI, and virtue ethics.Braden Molhoek is a Program Associate at the Center for Theology and the Natural Sciences, a Lecturer in Science, Technology, and Ethics at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, and an Adjunct Lecturer in the School of Engineering at Santa Clara University. Studying Genetics and Religion as a double major in his undergraduate studies, he went on to obtain a Ph.D. from the GTU in Ethics and Social Theory. His interests include the science and religion dialogue, how science shapes theological anthropology, gene editing and human enhancement, transhumanism, AI, and virtue ethics.

Hyung-Joo Lee

Hyung-Joo Lee is currently a 3rd year GTU Ph.D. student in the concentration of Theology and Science under the supervision of Prof. Robert John Russell. Studying Physics and Mathematics in his undergraduate studies in Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, he went on to obtain a Ph.D. from the same institute in Early Universe Cosmology. After his Ph.D. study in Cosmology, he began his theological studies to obtain an M.Div. in Seoul Theological University, where he also worked as a part-time instructor to teach courses on Theology and Science as well as on Physics during and after his M.Div. program. He is now preparing for his dissertation for his 2nd Ph.D. on how Creation and Eschatology in Christian Theology can be understood with the concepts of Time in Modern Sciences.

Jamie L. Fowler

As an ever-spirited child, Jamie always demonstrated a keen interest in the world around her. That interest bloomed as Jamie earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Biochemistry and Biology Magna Cum Laude from Gustavus Adolphus College in Minnesota. Following college, she worked for the Cytogenetics Laboratory at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN as the Technical and Research Specialist for Solid Tumors. Jamie developed cell culture techniques to increase the diagnostic success for certain tumors and stem cells. During the course of her work at the Mayo Clinic, she obtained a Master’s Degree in Tumor Biology.

In 2009 Jamie took on a half-time course load at Luther Seminary in St. Paul, MN. She graduated in 2012 with a Master of Arts degree in Systematic Theology Suma Cum Laude. In the fall of 2012, Jamie and her young daughter moved to Berkeley, CA to pursue a Doctoral Degree in Systematic Theology at Graduate Theological Union. Her individual focus in the study of theology and science is the relationship both of sin and grace (i.e. the real presence of Christ in the Lord’s Supper) to our biological bodies and physical world. Jamie is currently writing her dissertation. She intends to teach systematic theology and continue her work in science and theology.

Jamie leads a busy life as mother, wife, and theologian. She also teaches and practices power yoga regularly. She and her family have an active life of faith. They are involved in worship and fellowship. They are also incredibly committed to the work their congregation does for the homeless in Berkeley. Finally, Jamie loves to spend time with her family. She particularly enjoys walks through her neighborhood with her husband and their two dogs, visiting her family in Minnesota and Massachusetts, and any time spent with her young teenage daughter.

Ted Peters

Ted Peters is an author, professor, and pastor. He is Research Professor Emeritus in Systematic Theology and Ethics at Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary (PLTS), the Center for Theology and the Natural Sciences (CTNS), and the Graduate Theological Union (GTU) in Berkeley, California.

Ted has authored, co-authored, edited, and co-edited more than two dozen books. The topics range from sin and evil to the future of God and to points where science and religion clash and cooperate.

Ted offers a theological analysis of culture, analyzing especially the role of science in culture. He co-edits the journal, Theology and Science.

Registration is now closed. We hope to see you next year!

Tentative Conference Schedule (lunch not provided)

1:00pm

Registration

1:20pm

Welcome and Introduction

1:30pm

Fellowship Lecture: Adam Pryor

2:20pm

Response #1: Hyung-Joo Lee

2:40pm

Response #2: Jamie L. Fowler

3:00pm

Break (opportunity to move cars)

3:20pm

Response #3: Braden Molhoek

3:40pm

Response #4: Ted Peters

4:00pm

Respondents' Panel Discussion

4:15pm

General Q&A

4:35pm

Final Remarks from the Fellow

4:45pm

Presentation of the 2020 Charles H. Townes Graduate Student Fellowship

4:50pm

Refreshments & Adjournment

 

Questions?  Please write to mmoritz@gtu.edu.

 

Past CTNS Russell Research Fellows

Joshua M. Moritz — 2018-2019
What has Science to do with Youth Ministry?: Why Theological Engagement with the Natural Sciences is Vital for Effective and Impactful Youth Ministry

Ron Cole-Turner — 2017-2018
New Perspectives from Science on Human Origins

Hava Tirosh-Samuelson — 2016-2017
Religion, Science and Technology: Jewish Perspectives

Terrence W. Deacon and Tyrone Cashman — 2015-2016
Science, Naturalized Teleology and a Metaphysics of Incompleteness

Noreen Herzfeld — 2014-2015
More than Information: A Christian Critique of a New Dualism

Alex Filippenko — 2013-2014
Life in the Universe, Scientific and Religious Perspectives

Niels Henrik Gregersen — 2012-2013
God, Information and the Sciences of Complexity

J. K. Russell Research Fellowship / CTNS 30th Anniversary Conference — 2011-2012
God and Creation: Jewish, Christian and Muslim Perspectives on Scientific Cosmology
Alnoor Dhanani, Daniel Matt and William Stoeger, SJ, Joint Fellows

Thomas Tracy — 2010-2011
Scientific Vetoes and the "Hands-Off God": Can we Say that God Acts in History?

Francisco J. Ayala — 2008-2009
Darwin's Gift to Science and Religion

George V. Coyne — 2007-2008
Twenty Years After the New View from Rome: Pope John Paul II on Science and Religion

Celia Deane-Drummond — 2006-2007
The Evolution of Sin and the Redemption of Nature

Martinez Hewlett and Ted Peters — 2005-2006
Assessing the Case(s) for Theistic Evolution

Niels Henrik Gregersen — 2003-2004
Complexity Studies and Theories of Emergence: What Does It All Mean for Religion?
The Complexification of Nature: Supplementing the Neo-Darwinian Paradigm

Paul Davies — 2002-2003
Multiverse and Anthropic Fine-Tuning: Philosophical and Theological Implications

Archbishop Joseph Zycinski — 2001-2002
Beyond Necessity and Design: God's Immanence in the Process of Evolution

Philip Clayton — 2000-2001
The Emergence of Spirit

John Cobb, Jr. — 1999-2000
Science, Theology and Whitehead's Philosophy

Nancey Murphy — 1998-1999
Neuroscience, Mental Causation, and Freedom of the Will

Mary-Claire King — 1997-1998
Theological and Ethical Implications of Recent Research in Genetics

John Haught — 1996-1997
Science, Religion, and the Role of Metaphysics

Margaret Wertheim — 1995-1996
Women in Science, Women in Theology

George F.R. Ellis — 1994
What Does Scientific Cosmology Tell Us About God

Mary Gerhart & Allan M. Russell — 1993
Metaphoric Process as the Reformation of Worlds of Meaning in Theology and Natural Sciences

CTNS Decade Conference — 1992
Building Bridges Between Theology and Science: Beginning the Second Decade of CTNS

Holmes Rolston, III — 1991
Genes, Genesis, and God in Natural and Human History

Robert W. Jensen — 1990
Does God Have Time? The Doctrine of the Trinity and the Concept of Time in Physical Sciences

John Polkinghorne — 1990
The Church and the Environmental Crisis: Which Way Are We Heading?
God's Interaction with the World: Research Proposals by John Polkinghorne
The Challenge of Physics to World Religions

Lindon Eaves — 1989
Genes, Culture and Personality: An Empirical Approach

William R. Stoeger, S.J. — 1988
Cosmology and What It Tells Us About Physical Reality Philosophical and Theological Implications of Contemporary Cosmology-the Philosophy and Theology of Creation

Ernan McMullin — 1987
The Viability of Natural Theology from a Roman Catholic Perspective in Light of Contemporary Science and Philosophy

Wolfhart Pannenberg — 1986
The Doctrine of Creation and Modern Science

Arthur R. Peacocke, SOSc — 1985
Critical Realism in Science and Religion

Philip Hefner — 1984
Do the Sciences Throw Light on God's Presence in the World?

Ian G. Barbour — 1983
Toward a Theology of Technology

Andrew Dufner, S.J. — 1981-1982
Science, Theology & Spirituality