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St Mary's University

The Royal Priesthood and the Renewal of the Church, International Conference at St Mary’s University

Date: Thursday 20th June 2024

Venue: St Mary's University

The Royal Priesthood is a rich scriptural theme which draws together God's work of creating and saving humanity in Christ. It implies our divine filiation, the life of grace, the metaphysics of participation, the indwelling trinity, the church and the sacraments, the theology of nature and grace, and many other central Catholic doctrines. It has great potential to aid the renewal already well underway in contemporary Catholic theology, and, more concretely, to direct this renewal towards an awakening and revival of the church in our times.

This theme of the Royal Priesthood was an important aspect of Catholic theology from the mid-nineteenth century onwards and featured prominently in the Second Vatican Council. As part of the ongoing reception of the council, and in service to the contemporary church, the School of Theology at St Mary’s University, London, and The Aquinas Center for Theological Renewal at Ave Maria University, Florida, are delighted to work together to sponsor and organise a conference dedicated to this topic.

Alongside invited speakers, there will be a number of parallel panels of papers from postgraduate students. These will be grouped thematically and proposals for papers in the following areas are particularly welcome:

  • Scripture
  • Patristics
  • St Thomas Aquinas
  • Nature and grace
  • Sacramental theology and liturgy
  • Mariology
  • Divinization
  • Individual nineteenth and twentieth-century theologians
  • The Sacred Heart
  • Ecclesiology
  • The Second Vatican Council.

Please submit paper proposals by 15th November 2023 to You will be notified if your proposal has been accepted as soon as possible.

Conference schedule

Thursday 20th June 2024

The schedule for Thursday the 20th of June will be as follows:

  • 12pm - lunch

  • 1pm - opening

  • 1.15pm-3.15pm - panel one,

  • 1.15pm-1.45pm - Rev Dr Javier Ruiz-Ortiz – “What is so especial about Israel?” Understanding Exod 19:3-6 (Mater Ecclesiae College, London)

  • 1.45pm-2.15pm - Rev Dr Richard Ounsworth (Blackfriars, University of Oxford)

  • 2.15pm-2.45pm - Dr Joshua Madden - “The Commandment of the Lord is Lightsome”: Deification and the Erotic Teleology of the Royal Priesthood (Blackfriars, University of Oxford)

  • 2.45pm-3pm - questions for panel one

  • 3pm-3.30pm - tea and coffee break

  • 3.30pm-4.45pm - postgraduate panels (3 x 20 minute papers, with five minutes each for questions) – three parallel sessions

  • 4.45pm-5.30pm - break

  • 5.30pm - Mass

  • 6.45pm - conference dinner

  • 6.45pm-7pm - welcoming address from Vice-Chancellor, Anthony McClaran

  • 7pm-8.30pm - dinner

  • 8.30pm - Keynote one - Prof John Bergsma (Franciscan University, Steubenville).

Friday 21st June 2024

The schedule for Friday the 21st of June will be as follows:

  • 9am - Keynote two - Prof Matthew Levering – The Royal Priesthood and the Sacrament of Orders (Mundelein Seminary, University of St Mary of the Lake)

  • 10am - coffee

  • 10.15am-12pm - panel two

  • 10.15am - Prof Brandon Gallagher – Patristics (University of Exeter)

  • 10.45am - Prof Roger Nutt – The participatory way sacramental character conforms the soul to the priesthood of Christ (Ave Maria University, Florida)

  • 11.15am - Rev Dr Michael Lang – The Royal Priesthood and the offering of the Eucharist in the Roman liturgical tradition (Mater Ecclesiae College, London)

  • 11.45am-12pm - questions for panel two

  • 12pm - lunch

  • 1pm-2.45pm - panel three

  • 1pm - Sr Magdalene Eitenmiller OP – Christ, the Exemplar Cause, According to Whose Priesthood We Are Conformed (Mater Ecclesiae College, London)

  • 1.30-2pm - Prof George Corbett – Dante: Lay Theologian (University of St Andrews, Scotland)

  • 2pm-2.30pm - Prof Michael Dauphinais (Ave Maria University, Florida)

  • 2.30pm-2.45pm - questions for panel three

  • 2.50pm - panel four - Art and the Royal Priesthood

  • 2.50pm-3.10pm - Aidan Hart – Matter Matters: Why visual liturgical art is essential to fulfil mankind’s priestly ministry

  • 3.10pm-3.30pm - Martin Earle – Liturgical Orientation and Image in the Roman Rite

  • 3.30pm-3.50pm - questions

  • 3.50pm-4.15pm – tea break

  • 4.30pm-6pm - panel five

  • 4.30pm-5pm - Rev Dr Marcelo Navarro – The Catholic Priesthood: a Visible Extension, per Participation, of Christ’s Priesthood

  • 5pm-5.30pm - Rev Fr Brad Elliott OP – nature, grace and the Royal Priesthood

  • 5.30pm-6pm - Dr Bill Keimig – The Pragmatic, Practical, and Possible: Real-World Implications and Potential of the Theology of the Royal Priesthood for Evangelisation and Catechesis in Parish Life (Franciscan University, Steubenville, Ohio)

  • 6pm-6.15pm - questions

  • 6.30pm - Mass

  • 7.45pm - dinner.

Saturday 22nd June 2024

The schedule for Saturday the 22nd of June will be as follows:

  • 9am -  Keynote three- Prof Lawrence Feingold – Mary, the Model of the Eucharistic Life of the Royal Priesthood (Kenrick-Glennon Seminary)

  • 10am-10.30am - coffee.

Panel six

  • 10.30am-11am - Dr Jeremy Pilch – Henri Ramière and Columba Marmion (St Mary’s University, London)

  • 11am-11.30am - Rev Dr Isaac Morales OP – Created for Worship: Scripture’s Doxological Anthropology (Providence College, Rhode Island)

  • 11.30am-12pm - Prof Jacob Phillips – Ratzinger (St Mary’s University, London)

  • 12pm-12.15pm - questions

  • 12.15pm-1.30pm - lunch.

Panel seven

  • 1.30pm-2pm - Dr Dan Schneider – Non Specie Tibi Aestimandus, sed Munere: Sacerdotal Office, Invisible Fire, and the (Royal) Priestly Ministry of Exorcism

  • 2pm-2.30pm - Prof Mark Miravalle – Mary’s Spiritual Motherhood, the Royal Priesthood, and the Role of Women in the Church (Franciscan University, Steubenville, Ohio)

  • 2.30pm-3pm - Rev Dr Andrej Maria Caja – Ministerial Priesthood and Spiritual Motherhood as Two Essential Modalities of Participation in Christ’s Royal Priesthood according to Cardinal Herbert Vaughan (University of Nitra, Slovakia)

  • 3pm-3.30pm - Rev Dr Serafino Lanzetta – Our Lady’s unique participation in the priesthood of Christ (St Mary’s University, London)

  • 3.30pm-4pm - questions.

  • 4pm-4.15pm - closing remarks.

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