Conference to celebrate ND theologian John Dunne’s 50th year of teaching

Author: Michael O. Garvey


Seeking the Heart’s Desire,a conference honoring Rev. John Dunne, C.S.C., Rev. John A. O’Brien Professor of Catholic Theology, for his half-century-long presence on the faculty at Notre Dame, will be held Friday to Sunday (March 30 to April 1) at McKenna Hall.

Judge John T. Noonan of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court, a former member of theNotre DameLawSchoolfaculty and a close friend of Father Dunne, will give the conference keynote address at7 p.m.Friday (March 30).

On Saturday (March 31) at9 a.m.there will be a panel discussion onJohn Dunne and Contemporary Spiritual Theology.Panelists will include theologians Jon Nilson ofLoyolaUniversity,Chicago; Elizabeth Carr ofSmithCollege; and William D. Collinge of Mount Saint Mary’s College.

Following the discussion, three former students of Father Dunne will speak onJohn Dunne as Teacher.The three are Rev. Timothy Scully, C.S.C., professor of political science and director of Notre Dames Institute for Educational Initiatives;Mary Anne Wolfe, professor of child development at Tufts University; and Colleen Moore, coordinator of formation activities in Notre Dames Echo: Faith Formation Leadership Program.

At3:30 p.m., Father Dunne, a pianist, will give a musical performance of his own work, accompanied by Quinn Pilari, executive assistant atSouth Bends Center for the Homeless.

The conference will conclude on Sunday (April 1) at10 the chapel of Welsh Family Hall with a Mass at which Father Dunne will preside.

A 1951 Notre Dame alumnus, Father Dunne began to teach at Notre Dame whenhe returned from studies at theGregorianUniversityinRomein the fall of 1957.One of the Universitys most popular, even beloved teachers, he has written numerous influential works on theology and the spiritual life, includingThe City of the Gods,A Search for God in Time and Memory,andWay of All the Earth.He has taught arguably more Notre Dame students than any other person.

* Contact: * Rev. ** Paul Kollman, C.S.C., at 574-631-3873 or or visit

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