The Thomistic Institute exists to promote Catholic truth in our contemporary world by strengthening the intellectual formation of Christians at universities, in the Church, and in the wider public square. The thought of St. Thomas Aquinas, the Universal Doctor of the Church, is our touchstone. The Thomistic Institute is part of the Pontifical Faculty of the Immaculate Conception at the Dominican House of Studies in Washington, DC. It was founded in 2009.
The Thomistic Institute has founded student chapters on approximately 27 university and liberal arts college campuses since 2016. These chapters organize academic talks and conferences on elite campuses, dedicated to the intellectual consideration of religious viewpoints. This project will provide a series of talks and conferences on university campuses such as Harvard, Yale, Duke, and Williams, on the topics of (1) the compatibility of science and religion as well as (2) natural theology (the rationality of theism). A coherent presentation of the compatibility of modern natural science and metaphysical affirmation of the existence of God entails a broader intellectual presentation of the rational warrant of theism more generally. The Institute works with a variety of respected scientists, philosophers and theologians, who are competent to speak on these two topics as they inter-relate to one another. This project would sponsor at least 55 events of this kind, including an annual summer conference on science and religion for graduate students from these elite institutions that is overseen by a interdisciplinary team of philosophers and scientists. The first of annual conference will take place in June of 2018. Eventually it would be envisaged to have occasional, multi-day conferences on science and religion on the campuses. The Institute already has a proven track record of overseeing these sorts of events, but this grant will permit a great expansion in the domain of science and religion programming.