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Elms College to Host Rev. Hugh Crean Distinguished Lecture on April 20

CHICOPEE — Elms College will hold its second Rev. Hugh Crean Distinguished Lecture on Tuesday, April 20 from 4 to 5:30 p.m. This lecture is presented by the St. Augustine Center for Ethics, Religion, and Culture at Elms College, and, due to COVID-19 protocols, this event will be held virtually via Zoom.

The featured speaker will be David O’Brien, professor emeritus and Loyola professor of Roman Catholic Studies at the College of the Holy Cross, where he has been a faculty member since 1969. His talk is titled “Reflections on the Year of St. Joseph,” and he will address the significance of St. Joseph as patron of the church during the Year of St. Joseph.

This distinguished lecture series was established in 2019 to honor the late Rev. Hugh Crean, who was a professor of Religious Studies at Elms College from 1973 to 1979. He was a respected pastor and theologian who dedicated his life to pastoral care, spiritual leadership, and education at Elms and with the Diocese of Springfield.

Each year, a national leader in theology, ethics, or philosophy is invited to lecture on a topic that highlights the richness of the Catholic intellectual tradition. Last year’s lecture was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

An historian of American Catholicism, O’Brien specializes in Catholic social and political thought and religion and politics. He is the author of several books, including The Renewal of American Catholicism, Public Catholicism: The American Church and Public Life, and From the Heart of the American Church: Catholic Higher Education and American Culture. He also was co-editor of Catholic Social Thought: The Documentary Heritage.

The free event is open to the public. Visit www.elms.edu/crean to register. A Zoom link will be sent to all participants prior to the lecture.